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London Film Festival announces nominees for first Best Film trophy

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For the first time in its history, the Times BFI London Film Festival will have a formal competition, with films competiting for two new trophies. A Star of London award will be presented to the Best Film and the Best British Newcomer.
The BFI will also bestow Fellowships on two distinguished film-makers as part of an awards ceremony on the penultimate night of the festival.
The existing prizes at the festival, the Sutherland Trophy – for the best first feature at the festival – and the Grierson Award for documentaries will also be handed out.
The new awards ceremony has been introduced to help the Festival raise its profile at home and abroad.
This year’s Fellowships will go to two individuals with films screening at the Festival. The actor John Hurt – whose films 44 Inch Chest and The Limits of Control are both being shown – and the Malian director Souleymane Cissé – whose film Tell Me Who You Are will receive its UK Premiere at the event. Hurt said receiving the tribute was the highest possible honour that he could receive.
The new Best Film prize will recognise creative, original, imaginative, intelligent and distinctive filmmaking at the Festival. The short-list, drawn up by the programming team, includes The White Ribbon – Michael Haneke’s Palme d’Or winning film from this year’s Cannes Film Festival, Jane Campion’s John Keats biopic Bright Star, Nowhere Boy – Sam Taylor-Wood’s debut feature about the early years of John Lennon and the opening night film of the Festival, Wes Anderson’s stop-motion animation, Fantastic Mr Fox.
The jury for this prize will be chaired by the actress Anjelica Huston and include the actress Charlotte Rampling, the director Iain Softley and the director/actor Matthieu Kassovitz.
The other first-time award, presented to the Best British Newcomer, will honour the writer, producer or director who’s demonstrated “real creative flair and imagination with their first feature.” The nominees include the writers and directors of the films Kicks and The Scouting Book for Boys. On the jury are Lenny Crooks, from the UK Film Council’s New Cinema Fund, Christine Langan from BBC Films, Tessa Ross from Film4 and Tanya Seghatchian, from the Film Council’s Development Fund.
The existing prizes at the festival, the Sutherland Trophy – for the best first feature at the festival – and the Grierson Award for documentaries will also be handed out.
The nominees for the long-standing Sutherland Trophy include Lebanon, which won the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival, and Bunny and the Bull, by Paul King – who’s best known for directing the Mighty Boosh. The jury includes the directors Edgar Wright and Paul Greengrass and the actress Kerry Fox. The documentary maker Nick Broomfield will be among the jurors for the Grierson Award.
Full list of nominees:
BEST FILM
Balibo
Bright Star
Fantastic Mr. Fox
Micmacs
Nowhere Boy
A Prophet
The Road
A Serious Man
The White Ribbon
SUTHERLAND AWARD SHORTLIST
Ajami
Bunny & the Bull
Cold Souls
Eyes Wide Open
Lebanon
Metropia
Samson & Delilah
Shirley Adams
Wah Do Dem
Wolfy
BEST BRITISH NEWCOMER SHORTLIST
Malcolm Venville – director, 44 Inch Chest
J Blakeson – director, The Disappearance of Alice Creed
Jordan Scott – director, Cracks
Lindy Heymann – director, Kicks
Leigh Campbell – writer, Kicks
Tom Harper – director, The Scouting Book for Boys
Jack Thorne – writer, The Scouting Book for Boys
GRIERSON AWARD SHORTLIST
45365
La Danse – The Paris Opera Ballet
Defamation
Have You Heard from Johannesburg: The Bottom Line
His & Hers
Mugabe and the White African
Osadné
Sergio

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