Europe’s premier event for independent cinema, ÉCU – The European Independent Film Festival – announces its 2019 award-winning films, including its highest honour, “Best European Independent Film 2019.”

After showcasing 79 films from 30 countries, ÉCU 2019 ended its indie-packed weekend with a dazzling final ceremony recognizing 26 award winners in 14 categories. Winners included: SYDNEY, directed by Paul Wyett (UK) for Best European Independent Dramatic Short; RWANDA, directed by Riccardo Salvetti (Italy) for Best European Independent Dramatic Feature; and EL HOR, directed by Dianne Lucille Campbell (UK) for Best Independent Experimental Film. Artjom Baranov took home Best Director for PIG HEART (Germany). Together with Arab Cinema Center, ÉCU is proud to award Ahmed Khedr Excellence in Arab Filmmaking to FACES IN THE SUN by Farah Shaer (Lebanon, USA). The award for Best European Independent Film 2019 went to PIGGY (Spain), directed by Carlota Martínez Pereda.

During the festival weekend, international audiences were exposed to film and their filmmakers from across a spectrum of experiences, cultures, and genres. The Director Q&A sessions provided a great informal setting for discussion between the audience and the directors on filmmaking, while after-parties throughout Paris extended these conversations into the music-fuelled early morning hours. ÉCU endeavours to provide a cultural platform not only for entertainment but also for active networking across the independent film world.

For the last 14 years, ÉCU has been helping to launch and expand the careers of many talented independent filmmakers. The Festival is extremely proud to assist these passionately driven artists who create incredible cinema without the benefits of large production budgets. ÉCU’s mission to discover and promote extraordinary independent films from around the world renders it a major European cultural event.

Scott Hillier, Academy Award-honoured filmmaker and ÉCU President, remarked that “it has been an incredible experience and a deep honour to showcase the wide variety of high-calibre constituting ÉCU’s 2019 Official Selection this past weekend,” adding that “these deeply insightful and highly well-crafted narratives reveal the profound promise that the next generation of filmmakers have to offer.”

Listed below is the full list of ÉCU 2019 award-winners:

Best European Independent Film 2019 PIGGY Carlota Martínez Pereda
Best European Independent Dramatic Short SYDNEY Paul Wyett
Best European Independent Dramatic Feature RWANDA Riccardo Salvetti
Best European Independent Documentary THE QUIET REBEL Carole Cassier
Best Experimental Film EL HOR Dianne Lucille Campbell
Best European Independent Music Video BIRTHPLACE Jorik Dozy, Sil van der Woerd
Best European Independent Animated Film AUGENBLICKE – A BLINK OF AN EYE Kiana Naghshineh
Best European Independent Comedy PATER FAMILIAS Giacomo Boeri
Best Non-European Independent Dramatic Short THE MOUSE Liat Akta
Best Non-European Independent Dramatic Feature IN GOD I TRUST Maja Zdanowski
Best Non-European Independent Documentary WOMEN OF THE GULAG Marianna Yarovskaya
Best Student Film REVERIE Philip Louis Piaget Rodriguez
Best Short Script CLEMENT German Perugorria Pans
Best Feature Script COURTESY OF THE KAISER Mark Larson
Best Actor Mark Weinman in SEX ED by Alice Seabright
Best Actress Sylvie Le Clanche in LE MAL BLEU by Anaïs Tellenne and Zoran Boukherma
Best Editing SUBMISSION by Gary Coogan (Director: Savvas Stavrou)
Best Cinematography THIRD KIND by Yannis Kanakis (Director: Yorgos Zois)
Best Director PIG HEART Artjom Baranov
Special Jury Mention SKIN Guy Nattiv
SALAM Claire Fowler
I LOVE MY MUM Alberto Sciamma
Audience Award EVERYTHING YOU DIDN’T SAY Charlie Reader
The Ahmed Khedr Award for Excellence in Arab Filmmaking.
Presented in collaboration with Arab Cinema Center
FACES IN THE SUN Farah Shaer
Excellence in Women’s Filmmaking JOC Andreea Valean

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