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Film Luzzu wins Grand Prize in Japanese International Cinema Festival

Film Luzzu wins Grand Prize in Japanese International Cinema Festival

The Maltese feature film, Luzzu, which was released earlier this year, continues to impress viewers, on a local and international level as it racks up an impressive array of awards from festivals all over the world.

Luzzu’s most recent win? The grand prize in the International Feature Competition at Skip City International D-Cinema Festival in Japan. The 18th edition of the Japanese International festival received no less than 1,084 submissions, from over 100 regions in the world.

The festival was established in 2004 and shines a light on both Japanese and international movies and therefore, accepts submissions from all over the world. For instance, Luzzu won the Grand Prize, Rival (a German and Ukrainian feature) won best director and Kiss Me Before It Blows Up (a German feature) won the audience award.

Following preliminary judges nominated the first round of nominees, the official jury judged the films, with Luzzu eventually winning the grand prize. The film also made the long list for the best feature film at this year’s edition of the European Film Awards.

The members of the European Film Academy vote for those that have been nominated in the main categories and these will be announced during the Seville European Film Festival in Spain, on 9 November. The overall winner will then be announced on 11 December, during the 34th European Film Awards in Berlin.

Jesmark Scicluna also bagged the Special Jury Award for his performance at the Sundance Film Festival.

What is Luzzu about?

Luzzu revolves around a hardworking Maltese fisherman named Jesmark, who is faced with an agonising choice. He can either repair his leaky luzzu – a traditional Maltese fishing boat – in the hopes of eking out a humble living at sea for his wife and newborn son just as his father and grandfather did before him, or he can decommission the luzzu. The latter would be in exchange for an EU payout, and cast his lot with a sinister black-market operation, which is decimating the Mediterranean fish population, as well as the livelihoods of the local families who depend on it.

The film was directed by Alex Camilleri, produced by Oliver Mallia, Ramin Bahrani and Rebecca Anastasi and stars real-life fisherman Jesmark Scicluna and Michela Farrugia.

Check out the trailer for Luzzu below: