China's Tuya's Marriage wins Berlinale
19 February 2007, Berlin (dpa) - Tuya's Marriage (Tu ya de hun shi) by Chinese director Wang Quan'an won Saturday the Berlin Film Festival's coveted Golden Bear for best film, further underscoring the emergence of Asia as a major force in global cinema. The film, about a woman forced to find a new husband who can take care of both her family and her partially disabled ex-husband, was chosen by a seven-member international jury headed by internationally renowned American director Paul Schrader. Accepting th
19 February 2007
Berlin (dpa) - Tuya's Marriage (Tu ya de hun shi) by Chinese director Wang Quan'an won Saturday the Berlin Film Festival's coveted Golden Bear for best film, further underscoring the emergence of Asia as a major force in global cinema.
The film, about a woman forced to find a new husband who can take care of both her family and her partially disabled ex-husband, was chosen by a seven-member international jury headed by internationally renowned American director Paul Schrader.
Accepting the prize, which was handed out in a Hollywood Academy Awards-style ceremony, Wang Quan'an said that he had learnt when he was studying that as a filmmaker, he should use his skills to show dreams.
"And now today a dream comes true," said the 42-year-old director.
His film became the third Chinese film to win the Golden Bear since 1988.
Set in the harsh, isolated and arid world of north-west Mongolia, Tuya's Marriage features a rising star of Chinese cinema, Yu Nan, in the title role.
The film was one of a series of films in the festival where strong women characters played the leading role.
However, the story of Tuya and her family is also very much about the Mongolian people, whose life is threatened by China's rapid economic change and government pressure for them to abandon their nomadic existence and move to urban centres.
Tuya's Marriage was one of two films from China selected for the main competition at this year's Berlinale, with the Asian movies in the festival in general dealing more with themes about the pressures of modern life compared to many films from Europe and the US.
Controversy emerged over the other entry, Lost in Beijing, from director Li Yu, after the movie's producers screened the uncut version of the film which had not been approved by China's Film Bureau.
Asked during a TV interview later about the problems about censorship faced by filmmakers in China, Wang Quan'an said he believed that his success in Berlin would give him "more freedom in the future" in making films.
A total of 22 films were competing for the festival's top honours this year.
Now in its 57th year, the Berlinale is one of the world's top three film festivals.
Altogether about 400 films were shown during the 10-day movie marathon.
The best director prize went to Israeli director Joseph Cedar for his anti-war drama, Beaufort, about his nation's 2000 withdrawal from southern Lebanon and which gave a forthright description of the horrors and fear of war.
Cedar told the Saturday night gala audience that Beaufort was "the story about how wars end, and the complicated feelings about lowering the flag ... and returning home and about fear."
He went went on to say that he hoped that "our leaders will be fearful of war and have the courage to end them."
Another Israeli film, Sweet Mud (Adama Meshuga'a T), from director Dror Shaul, won the Berlinale's Crystal Bear for best youth cinema.
Julio Chavez won the best actor award for his role in the film The Other (El Otro) by Argentinean-born director Ariel Rotter. Germany's Nina Hoss won the best actress award for her role in German director Christian Petzold's Yella.
Rotter's film also won the jury prize. An emotional Rotter thanked the jury for selecting his movie, saying they had focused on what cinema really meant rather than the commercial side of the industry.
The Alfred Bauer prize, which is awarded for the festival's founder and is for movies opening up new perspectives in cinema, went to Korean director Park Chan-Wook's off-the-wall romantic comedy I'm a cyborg, but that's Ok (Sai bo gu ji man gwen chan a).
Park said that he was dedicating the award to his wife, who sometimes was less than happy with his life as a film director.
"I hope she will now say: 'My husband is a film director, but he is OK," Park said. His award also marked another success for Korea's burgeoning movie business.
Indian director Rajnesh Domalpalli also picked up a prize for the best first feature at the Berlinale for his movie Vanaja, which tells the tale of about India's cast system.
The jury awarded the cast of US actor-turned-director Robert De Niro's The Good Shepherd a silver bear.
Starring Matt Damon and Angelina Jolie, the film focuses on how a young agent essentially sacrifices his family and private life for the sake of his CIA work.
Playing in the film, German born Martina Gedeck said the prize would be dedicated to the 63-year-old De Niro.
The Berlinale-awarded British director David Mackenzie's Hallam Foe the prize for best musical score.
The previous Golden Bear winners from China were Xie Fei in 1993 for his movie Women from the Lake of Scented Souls, and Zhang Yimou for Red Sorghum in 1988.
Subject: German news