Tampere Film Festival Prizes Awarded at Tuulensuu Palace – Grand Prix to Wander to Wonder by Nina Gantz

Tampere Film Festival reached its peak with its Award Ceremony on Saturday night, March 9, where winners of the competition series were made public. Awards were given in International, National and the Generation XYZ Competition. In addition, audience favourites were awarded, as well as the winner of the Sustainability Award Verso. For the first time, Sylvi Prizes by the Writers Guild of Finland for the Best Film Script and the Best TV Script were also handed out at the Award Ceremony.

International Competition

The main prize of the International Competition, Grand Prix, went to Wander to Wonder (The Netherlands, France, Belgium, 2023) by Nina Gantz. The film was also chosen as Tampere’s Short Film Candidate for the European Film Awards 2024.

The International Competition Jury described the film as inventive and bittersweet. The film sucks the viewer into a children’s TV show whose production has been interrupted, leaving the animated main characters with nowhere to go. Carefully crafted down to its every detail, the film doubles as a moving and playful meditation on storytelling and all its possibilities.

Shotplayer (United States, 2023) by Sam Shainberg was chosen as Best Documentary in the International Competition. The award for Best Animation went to La saison pourpre (France, 2023) by Clémence Bouchereau. The Jury pick for Best Fictional Film went to Oyu (France, 2023) by Atsushi Hirai. The International Competition chose to give their Special Mention to the documentary Leila (Sweden, 2023) by Fariba Haidari.

The Audience Award in the International Competition went to Guazuvirá (Uruguay, 2023) by Joaquin Araújo and Nicolás Sequeira.

Miguel Dias, Paul Drey, Nino Orjonkidze, Anton Vanha-Majamaa and Emily Wright served in the International Jury.

National Competition

The Main Prize for films under 30 minutes went to Lasse kaatuu, voi ei! (Finland, 2023) by Risto-Pekka Blom. The juries described the absurd comedy as one that blends fiction together with reality, and through cinematic means creates a fully formed story of the most famous fall in Finnish history, that has a surprising connection to one of the darkest moments in Finnish democracy.

The Special Prize in the same competition series went to Elina Talvensaari’s How to Please (Finland, 2023). The same film also took home the Risto Jarva Prize and the Prize of the Youth Jury. The film was described as creative and theatrical, telling the story of the obstacles asylum seekers have to face and overcome. The main character’s steadfast attitude while being trapped in the cogs of faceless and unjust bureaucracy is moving in this compassionate and visually innovative documentary.

Heta Jäälinoja’s Nun or Never! (Finland, 2023) was chosen as Tampere’s nominee for the European Short Film Audience Award. The crew was also awarded the Sustainability Award Verso. The crew’s way of working in ways that support ecological sustainability was described as systematic and comprehensive.

The Main Prize for films over 30 minutes in the National Competition went to Hard to Break (Finland, 2023), a documentary by Anna-Maija Heinonen and Krista Moisio. According to the Jury, the filmmakers succeeded in portraying their young leads’ vulnerability and experiences of social exclusion from their own level and with honesty. The Special Prize was given to Matti Elo’s film Eila Babushka – The Past is a Foreign Country (Finland, 2024). The film was described as a moving, intimate portrait of rootlessness and identity.

The Church Media Foundation prize was given to Do No Harm (Finland, 2024) by Satu Majava and Joel Tainio. The Golden Shade Equipment Rental Prize For Cinematographer was awarded to the cinematographer of Máhccan – Homecoming (Finland, 2023), Anssi Kömi. The Tampere Film Festival Student Award was given to My Father’s Badger (Finland, 2024) by Sameli Muurimäki.

The National Competition also handed out one Special Mention, which went to Every Tom, Dick and Urpo (Finland, 2023) by Karoliina Gröndahl. It was described as a film for every sensitive man in Finland who has experienced bullying. The Audience Award in the National Competition went to Not Withholding Anything From You (Finland, 2023) by Veikko Aaltonen.

Madison Egan, Katja Gauriloff and Leena Virtanen served in the National Jury.

Generation XYZ

The award for Best Genre Film went to Se dit d’un cerf qui quitte son bois (Belgium, 2023) by Salomé Crickx. According to the jury, the film poses a drastic and entertaining solution to the issues with an increasingly older population. Full of surprising twists and turns, the film combines great ensemble acting and an innovative approach to an actual societal issue – all conceived within a distinct genre setting.

The Special Mention in the Generation XYZ Competition went to Wildmen of the Greater Toronto Area (Canada, 2023) by Solmund MacPherson. The Audience Award was given to Bannkorb (Germany, 2024) by Vincent Ercolani, Julius Schulze Farwick and Nicholas Dues.

Aino Suni, Anders E. Larsson and Jani Pösö served in the Generation XYZ Jury.

Sylvi Prizes

Since 1985, the Writers Guild of Finland has awarded scriptwriting with the Sylvi Prize. The prize has been given to numerous notable Finnish writers, and is judged purely based on text. This is the first year that the winners of the Sylvi Prizes have been announced at Tampere Film Festival’s Award Ceremony.

The Sylvi Prize for the Best TV Script was given to Paula Mononen and Kaarle Aho for Eroja ja sovintoja. The series was said to put a radical fresh focus on a middle-aged woman and the people and relationships around her.

Je’vida (2023), written by Katja Gauriloff and Niillas Holmberg, won the Sylvi Prize for the Best Film Script. The film was described as a lyrical story of the time when colonialism hiding under the cloak of civilization destroyed the Sami people’s way of life in such a way that even the main character’s own name became shameful. The film is a controlled work in form, and the writers’ approach to the subject is very comforting.

See the Awarded Films at Cine Atlas This Sunday

Awarded films will be played on Sunday, March 10, at Finnkino Cine Atlas starting at 11. You can buy tickets to the Awarded Films screenings from lippu.fi’s online store or ticket outlets, as well as Tampere Film Festival’s own ticket outlet at Finnkino Cine Atlas.