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Cliff Curtis awarded at APSA

Brisbane hosted the Asia-Pacific Screen Awards Thursday evening, with Apichatpong Weerasethakul’s Cemetery of Splendour taking away the Best Film gong. Pictured above, producer Najwa Abu Bakar (right) accepted the APSA for Best Film on behalf of Weerasethakul from international jury president KIM Dong-ho.

During the event Cliff Curtis was named one of four awardees of MPAA-APSA Academy development grants. Curtis, whose Best Actor win last year for The Dark Horse inducted him into the Academy and qualified his future projects for consideration for APSA grants, was awarded for feature project The Foxboy.

River, awarded development support by the APSA Children’s Film fund in 2012, took the APSA for Youth Feature.

While the Singapore International Film Festival (SGIFF) was readying to host its opening night a couple of time zones away, the city state’s Cannes and APSA Best Director winner Anthony Chen (Ilo Ilo) hosted the APSA event in Queensland with Australian TV presenter Sofie Formica.

Taking even longer to get going than a European arthouse title (and including a rendition of La Vie en Rose en français as one of number of expressions of solidarity with France during the evening), this year’s event happily lacked some of the disruptive drama that last year’s electric storm created.

When the first award winner was announced, the decision promptly put the sword to any notions of home ground advantage as Blinky Bill missed out on the Animated Feature gong. Later in the evening Australian Stephen Page won a Special Mention in the APSA UNESCO award category for Spear.

39 films from 22 Asia Pacific countries and territories competed, with HOU Hsiao-hsien’s The Assassin having led the way in with three nominations. Having collected the Best Cinematography gong at Taiwan’s Golden Horse last weekend, Mark Lee Ping-Bing was on hand to take the film’s sole award in Brisbane.

The Asia Pacific Screen Awards ceremony ran 26 November in Brisbane. The 2015 APSA winners were (marked ***):

Best Feature Film
Alive, Republic of Korea
The Assassin, Taiwan
*** Cemetery of Splendour, Thailand, Malaysia, France, Germany, United Kingdom
End of Winter, Republic of Korea
Journey to the Shore, Japan, France

APSA Jury Grand Prize (two winners)
Park Jung-bum, for writing, directing and acting in Alive
Emin Alper, for writing and directingFrenzy

Best Youth Feature Film
A Corner of Heaven, People’s Republic of China, France
Mina Walking, Afghanistan, Canada
Mustang, Turkey, Qatar, France, Germany
*** River, People’s Republic of China
Set Me Free, Republic of Korea

Best Animated Feature Film
Blinky Bill The Movie, Australia, India, Ireland
*** Miss Hokusai, Japan
The Road Called Life, Republic of Korea
The Snow Queen 2: The Snow King, Russian Federation
When Marnie Was There, Japan

Best Documentary Feature Film
Among the Believers, Pakistan, United States of America
Another Country, Australia
*** The Chinese Mayor, People’s Republic of China
The Look of Silence, Indonesia, Denmark, Norway, Finland, United Kingdom
A Flag Without a Country, Iraq

Achievement In Directing
Park Jungbum, Alive, Republic of Korea
Hou Hsiao-hsien, The Assassin, Taiwan
Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Cemetery of Splendour, Thailand, Malaysia, France, Germany, United Kingdom
Yermek Tursunov, Stranger, Kazakhstan 
*** Alexey German Jr, Under Electric Clouds, Russian Federation, Ukraine, Poland

Best Screenplay
*** Senem Tüzen, Motherland, Turkey, Greece
Emin Alper, Frenzy, Turkey, Qatar, France
Xin Yukun, Feng Yuanliang, The Coffin in the Mountain, People’s Republic of China
Kenzhebek Shaikakov, Tent, Kazakhstan
Vimukthi Jayasundara, Dark in the White Light, Sri Lanka, France
Achievement In Cinematography
Jean-Marc Ferrière, Sunrise, India 
Murat Aliyev, Stranger, Kazakhstan
*** Mark Lee Ping-Bing, The Assassin, Taiwan 
*** Special Mention: Lu Songye, Tharlo, People’s Republic of China 
Miaoyan Zhang, A Corner of Heaven, People’s Republic of China, France 

Best Performance By An Actress
*** Kirin Kiki, An, Japan, France, Germany
Lee Yeong-lan, End of Winter, Republic of Korea
Shamaine Buencamino, Lorna, Philippines
*** Special Mention: Fatemeh Motamed Arya, Avalanche, Islamic Republic of Iran
Evgeniya Mandzhieva,The Gulls, Russian Federation

Best Performance By An Actor
Alexey Gusykov, The Find, Russian Federation, Finland 
*** Jung Jaeyoung, Right Now, Wrong Then, Republic of Korea
Reef Ireland, Downriver, Australia 
Misha Gomiashvili,The President, Georgia, United Kingdom, France, Germany 
Shide Nyima, Tharlo, People’s Republic of China 

Miaoyan Zhang, A Corner of Heaven, People’s Republic of China, France
Ella Manzheeva, The Gulls, Russian Federation
Senem Tüzen, Motherland, Turkey, Greece
*** Hany Abu-Assad, The Idol, Palestine, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, Netherlands
*** Special Mention: Stephen Page, Spear, Australia

FIAPF Award for Outstanding Achievement in Film
Esaad Younis

NETPAC Development Prize
Sutak, written by Aktan Arym Kubat & Ernest Abdyjaparov

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