If you haven’t been following the Reykjavík International Film Festival (aka RIFF), the title of this news article might have lured you here under false pretences. Because rather than an Icelandic kids story designed to foster cross-cultural understanding, it’s actually about the awards ceremony that closed the festival last night.
The Golden Puffin is the top prize on offer at the RIFF award ceremony, given to the “Discovery of the Year”, as selected by an international jury. This year, after consideration of a twelve-strong shortlist, the prize went to the Iranian production ‘Wednesday May 9th’.
The director, Vahid Jalilvand, gave his acceptance speech via this video recording:
The jury said they were “really moved by the stories of three women in contemporary Teheran” and that it was “a really strong film with many layers to be explored.”
The Best icelandic Short category, chosen in collaboration with Icelandic broadcaster RÚV, was a tie between ‘Heimildarminnd’ (or ‘Docyoumentory’, in English) by Jón Ásgeir Karlsson and ‘Regnbogapartý’ (or ‘Rainbow Party’, in English) by Eva Sigurðardóttir. Both were were praised for evoking strong emotional responses from the jury.
Other winners included ‘Krisha’ (USA), ‘How To Change The World’ (CAN/GBR), ‘Cartel Land’ (MEX/USA) and ‘Winter Hymns’ (CAN).