Competitions

Tokyo Grand Prix: Heaven Knows What (directed by Joshua Safdie, Benny Safdie) ©2014 TIFF

Special Jury Prize: The Lesson (directed by Kristina Grozeva, Petar Valchanov)

Award for Best Director: Joshua Safdie, Benny Safdie (Heaven Knows What)

Award for Best Actress: Rie Miyazawa (Pale Moon)

Award for Best Actor: Robert Więckiewicz (The Mighty Angel)

Award for Best Artistic Contribution: Test (directed by Alexander Kott)

The Audience Award: Pale Moon (directed by Daihachi Yoshida)

WOWOW Viewer’s Choice Award: Test (directed by Alexander Kott)

Asian Future

Best Asian Future Film Award: Borderless (directed by Amirhossein Asgari)

The Spirit of Asia Award by the Japan Foundation Asia Center: Director Sotho Kulikar (The Last Reel)

Japanese Cinema Splash

Best Picture Award: 100 Yen Love (directed by Masaharu Take)

Japanese Film Splash, Special Mention: Ecotherapy Getaway Holiday (directed by Shuichi Okita)

SAMURAI Award: Director Takeshi Kitano, Director Tim Burton

The newly established award, the Samurai Award was presented to Director Takeshi Kitano and Director Tim Burton. They were each presented with a trophy by Yasushi Shiina, Director General of TIFF. Kitano commented, “I think I was in the first TIFF which was still a small festival. Then the Green Carpet appeared that made us feel like grasshoppers. I understand there’s no prize money but a trophy made up of left over material from other nicer trophies. I didn’t want to receive the prize but when I heard that Tim Burton was coming, I didn’t feel so ashamed. I wasn’t satisfied making TV and comedy shows but I finally feel like I’m casting off my skin. Not like a snake turning into a larger snake, but more like a cicada turning into a dragonfly.”

Burton said, “Thank you for having me. Japan is one of my favourite countries, so it’s an honour to be here with all of you, with the great Takeshi Kitano, and with the Japanese monsters that I love.”

The Japanese Cinema Splash section Best Picture Award, was presented to 100 Yen Love, directed by Masaharu Take. Christian Jeune, Deputy General Delegate at the Festival de Cannes welcomed Take to the stage and jury member Kazuyoshi Kumakiri presented a trophy.

Take said, “This film started from a small scenario, but with the award we received, it’ll help us spread this movie to a larger audience.” Take added, “Film festivals are a good platform for independent filmmakers, but it’s important to have an open mind, to want to promote your film worldwide. Young filmmakers should be more active in trying to deliver their films to the world.”

Jury member, Tony Rayns made a comment on the judging process. “We saw all sorts of films like one that was homage to Federico Fellini, about a film that taught us the meaning of love, or one that none of us could understand! We were impressed enough by another film which we also thought deserved a special mention, which is Ecotherapy Getaway Holiday directed by Shuichi Okita. We thought Sakura Ando in 100 Yen Love gave a heroic performance, we liked the music and we particularly liked how Take-san directed the film. I think he expressed the deep understanding of what it means to be defeated. I hope this film will be a great success.”

The Asian Future section saw two winners. Director Sotho Kulikar with her film, The Last Reel, won The Spirit of Asia Award by the Japan Foundation Asia Center. “This was my first film as a director and my first film to be in such a prestigious festival, so this award is very meaningful to further erect my career. I’m grateful to my mother who is my role model of my life. Without her, I wouldn’t be here today. My mother once told me that a few months before the civil war, my father was suggested by a friend that he should take us and leave for Europe until the country became stable. This was just before the collapse of Cambodia. But my mother said, “Why leave? There is only six months of sunshine in Europe.” This was her expression for her love for Cambodia. I had a personal desire to tell a story to know about my family history. I was born two years before the civil war and grew up during the war. I don’t remember the genocide period and people didn’t want to talk about it. My generation grew up only knowing that Pol Pot regime destroyed our country. After working with people in the Khmer Rouge, I understood why Cambodians kept silent. I developed a desire to tell a story from a Cambodian perspective. There is a large population of young Cambodians who aren’t interested in their heritage; rather they are ashamed of it. I wanted to communicate to people across generations to move on to the future. That’s why this trophy is for my country.”