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Various | Various 2009-10-25
A BRAND NEW LIFE wins Tokyo's Best Asian award

[The Hollywood Reporter]
'Eastern Plays' wins Tokyo's top prize
Bulgarian drama also takes best director, best actor
By Gavin J. Blair

Oct 25, 2009, 07:50 AM ET

TOKYO -- Bulgaria's "Eastern Plays" was the big winner at the 22nd Tokyo International Film Festival, as it took the Sakura Grand Prix for best film, best director for Kamen Kalev, and best actor for Christo Christov, at the closing ceremony on Sunday

The $50,000 prize for "Eastern Plays," the tale of two disaffected brothers in Sofia's housing projects, was announced by jury president Alejandro Gonz?ez Iñárritu ("Babel").

The Winds of Asia section was won by "A Brand New Life," the debut by French-Korean filmmaker, Ounie Lecomte, who began her acceptance speech with an apology for speaking French while accepting the Asian section award.

Tetsuaki Maki's "Live Tape" won the Japanese Eyes Award for upcoming domestic directors, with his 80-minute, one tape, one-take, film.

The Toyota Earth Grand Prix for the film that best expressed the fest's ecological theme went to "Wolf" from France's Nicolas Vanier. France was also represented by Xabi Molia's "Eight Times Up," for which Julie Gayet took the best actress gong.

The Special Jury Prize went to Sebastian Cordero's "Rabia" (Spain-Colombia), and the audience award went to Canadian comedy, "The Trotsky" by Jacob Tierney.

The 22nd TIFF ended its nine-day run with a screening of Pixar's "Up," followed by the Grand Prix winner.

Tokyo fest touts 'Plays'
Drama wins Grand Prix at film festival
By MARK SCHILLING, Sun., Oct. 25, 2009, 2:18pm PT

"Eastern Plays," Bulgarian helmer Kamen Kalev's drama about two brothers brought together by an act of racial violence, which played in Cannes Directors' Fortnight, won the Grand Prix at the 22nd Tokyo Film Festival.

Kalev also scooped the director prize while star Christo Christov, on whose life the pic was based, received the actor award.

The special jury prize went to Sebastian Cordero's Toronto fest-player "Rabia," a Spanish-Columbian co-production about a killer who goes into hiding, while the audience award was given to another Toronto favorite, Jacob Tierney's "The Trotsky," a Canadian drama about a high school boy who thinks he is the reincarnation of Russian revolutionary Leon Trotsky.

In the Winds of Asia section, the Asian-Middle Eastern film award went to Ounie Lecomte's "A Brand New Life." Mahsun Kirmizigul received a special mention for "I Saw the Sun." The late Malaysian helmer Yasmin Ahmad, who died in July, was honored with the section's special contribution award and three of her pics were screened in a special retro.

And in the Japanese Eyes section, Tetsuaki Matsue's "Live Tape," a documentary about a street musician shot in one 74-minute take, won the best picture award. Some 41,771 people attended the fest's 270 screenings. There were 278,339 visitors to the Tiffcom market and allied events.

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