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Female Filmmakers Win Top Prizes at Hong Kong International Film Festival

Female filmmakers bagged top prizes at the Hong Kong International Film Festival on Monday, with Chinese drama “Girls Always Happy” scooping two awards and Japanese gay documentary “Of Love & Law” leading the documentary race.

“Girls Always Happy,” the directorial debut of Chinese filmmaker Yang Mingming, revolves around a complex mother-daughter relationship. It won the Firebird Award in the Young Cinema Competition and the FIPRESCI Prize. The film premiered at the Berlinale earlier this year.

The Hong Kong festival features three different competitions: young cinema, documentary and short film. “Daughter of Mine” by Italian filmmaker Laura Bispuri, which also premiered in Berlin, was awarded Jury Prize in the Young Cinema Competition.

The Firebird Award of the documentary competition went to “Of Love & Law” by Toda Hikaru, which follows the story of gay couple Fumi and Kazu, who run a law firm together in Japan. Simon Lereng Wilmont’s “The Distant Barking of Dogs,” which was set in a village near the front line of the Ukraine-Russia conflict, took home the jury prize. “Mama” by Jin Xingzheng earned a special mention.

Animated short film “Wicked Girl” by Turkish filmmaker Ayce Kartal won the Firebird Award in the short film section. Niki Lindroth von Bahr’s “The Burden” was presented the jury prize in this category.

“An Elephant Sitting Still”, the directorial debut of Chinese filmmaker Hu Bo – and also his last feature due to his untimely death – won the Audience Choice Award.

The festival runs until Thursday.

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