The Foyle Film Festival is one of only a handful of international festivals with Oscar® affiliation and BAFTA recognition. The awards were presented by BAFTA nominated director and special guest of the festival Mat Whitecross.
Irish filmmaker Ian Power took home the prize for Best Irish Short for his film The Tattoo, qualifying it for Oscar® contention. The film tells the story of a Holocaust survivor working in a New York funeral home who is confronted with a reminder of her past. The film was commended by the judges for an original and emotionally engaging story with a strong visual tone achieved by the cinematographer.
I Made This For Mum, by Dutch filmmaker Melanie Essink, took home the award for Best International Short, qualifying it for Oscar® consideration also. It tells the story of a young girl who uses film to forge a connection with the mother she never knew. The film was praised by the jury for the emotional impact of the storytelling and creativity of the cinematography.
The award for Best Animation went to Sister, by Chinese director Siqi Song. In the film a man remembers growing up in 1980s China with an annoying little sister and wonders how his life would be if things had gone differently. The short was commended by the jury for the strength of emotion brought about by the excellent quality of animation and execution of story.
The awards, sponsored by City of Derry Crystal, were presented ahead of the packed Closing Gala screening of The Kindergarten Teacher in Brunswick Moviebowl, bringing to a close ten days of premiere screenings, special guest discussions and industry networking. This year the Oscar®-affiliated festival welcomed a host of special guests that included Mat Whitecross, Sue Clayton and Edwin Thomas.
Festival director, Bernie McLaughlin, said: ‘The standard of short films and animations entered into this year’s competition has been of an extremely impressive standard and we are privileged to have had our competitors share their work with us. We are delighted to present these three excellent films with our prestigious Light in Motion award. I would like to thank all of our competitors and wish them all the very best in their careers going forward.’
Foyle Film Festival is funded by the Department for Communities through Northern Ireland Screen, Derry City and Strabane District Council and Tourism Northern Ireland. The Festival acknowledges the ongoing support of City of Derry Crystal, and venue partner Brunswick Moviebowl.