Feathers flies to Critics Week victory

Egyptian takes gong in first and second film selection

by Richard Mowe

Egyptian comedy-drama Feathers took top prize in Critics Week
Egyptian comedy-drama Feathers took top prize in Critics Week Photo: Courtesy of Cannes Critics Week
In the run-up to this weekend at the Cannes Film Festival when the Official Competition prizes will be awarded by Spike Lee and his jury, the Critics’ Week - celebrating its 60th anniversary - has announced the winners of the strand to devoted to first and second films.

The Nespresso Grand Prize has gone to Feathers, a comedy-drama by Omar El Zohairy set in contemporary Egypt. The picaresque tale follows a woman with three children whose husband is turned into a chicken by a magician in a trick that goes awry.

Omar El Zohairy
Omar El Zohairy Photo: Courtesy of Cannes Film Festival
The Rising Star award promoted by the Louis Roederer Foundation was bestowed on Sandra Melissa Torres for her performance in Simón Mesa Soto's Amparo as a working class mother seeking to save her son from military conscription in Columbia.

The jury was presided over by Christian Mungiu, the Romanian director of 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days.

In other awards the Gan Foundation Award to aid distribution was won by Zero Fucks Given by Emmanuel Marre and Julie Coustre.

Screenwriters Elie Grappe and Raphaëlle Desplechin were given the SACD award for best script for Olga which explores the trials and tribulations of a competitive gymnast in Ukraine.

The Short Film Discovery prize went to Lili Alone by Zou Jing and the Canal+ short award was bestowed on Brutalia: Days of Labour by Manolis Mavris.

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