Berlin Film Festival Awards: Climate Change Movie Wins Golden Bear

Yu Nan Tuya's Marriage
Yu Nan in Tuya's Marriage

“When I started making films, my teacher said film should show people's dreams. This film made my dreams come true,” remarked Chinese director Wang Quan'an upon accepting the Berlin Film Festival's Golden Bear for his rural drama Tuya's Marriage, a portrait of the social and environmental costs of China's unbridled economic growth.

In Tuya's Marriage, a woman (Yu Nan) living in desertifying Inner Mongolia (a territory in northern China) tries to find a new husband to take care of herself and of her family, including handicapped husband no. 1. “I think that it is important, particularly in this time when the economy is booming,” Wang remarked, “to ponder and reflect on what we're losing.”

Tuya's Marriage is the third Chinese film to win the Golden Bear in the last 20 years, following Zhang Yimou's Red Sorghum (1988) and Xie Fei's Women from the Lake of Scented Souls (1993). Last year, Jia Zhang-Ke's Still Life, which shows the environmental and social damage caused by the building of the Three Gorges Dam, won the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival.

The runner-up for best film was Grand Prix winner The Other, Argentinean director Ariel Rotter's tale of a man who undergoes a mid-life crisis – including an attempt to find himself a new identity – upon learning that his partner is pregnant. For his performance as the middle-aged man, Julio Chávez (above) won the Silver Bear for best actor. Critics generally gave Rotter's leisurely paced drama a cool reception.

The anti-war drama Beaufort, which depicts the withdrawal of an Israeli army unit from southern Lebanon, brought director Joseph Cedar a Silver Bear. At the Saturday gala ceremony, Cedar expressed his hope that “our leaders will be fearful of war and have the courage to end them.”

The Silver Bear for best actress went to Nina Hoss (above) for her role as a woman who must deal with the ghosts from her past in Christian Petzold's German drama Yella. Hoss beat favorites Yu Nan and Marianne Faithfull, who plays a grandmother-turned-sex worker in the well-received Irina Palm – which was also one of the two or three favorites to win the Golden Bear.

“I didn't expect this at all because of the huge competition,” Hoss told reporters. “I feel even more honored … to get this gift against Cate Blanchett [for The Good German] and Marianne Faithfull … and all those great actresses I really admire.”

Hoss' win was the third in a row for German actresses at the Berlin festival. Last year, Sandra Hüller received the Silver Bear for her performance as a woman who believes herself possessed by the devil in Requiem, and the year before Julia Jentsch won the award for her star-making turn as German underground leader Sophie Scholl in Sophie Scholl: The Final Days.

A special Silver Bear was given to the cast of Robert De Niro's Cold War drama The Good Shepherd, which was coolly received in the United States. The film stars Matt Damon as a CIA spy; also in the cast are Angelina Jolie, William Hurt, Alec Baldwin, Timothy Hutton, Martina Gedeck, Tammy Blanchard, and De Niro himself. Upon accepting the award, Martina Gedeck (one of the stars of the popular The Lives of Others) dedicated the trophy to director De Niro.

The Alfred Bauer award, named after the festival's founder and given to “innovative” films, went to Park Chan-Wook's Korean romantic comedy I'm a Cyborg, But That's Ok.

“I would like to share this award with my wife,” Park declared. “She is very unhappy with my career as a director. I am not home for weeks, busy all the time and even when I am home my head is full of other thoughts. I hope she will now forgive me. When I get home, I hope she will tell our friends, 'My husband is a director but that's OK.'"

Approximately 400 films were screened and more than 200,000 tickets were sold during the ten-day Berlin festival. Twenty-two of those films were competing for the Golden Bear.

2007 Berlin Film Festival Awards

2007 Berlin Film Festival: February 8–18.


International Competition

Yu Nan in Tuya's Marriage

Golden Bear for the Best Film: Tu ya de hun shi / Tuya's Marriage by Wang Quan'an

Silver Bear - The Jury Grand Prix: El Otro / The Other by Ariel Rotter

Silver Bear - Best Dir.: Joseph Cedar for Beaufort

Silver Bear - Best Actor: Julio Chávez in El Otro / The Other by Ariel Rotter

Nina Hoss in Yella

Silver Bear - Best Actress: Nina Hoss in Yella by Christian Petzold

Silver Bear - Outstanding Artistic Contribution: To the ensemble cast of The Good Shepherd by Robert De Niro

Silver Bear - Best Film Music: David Mackenzie for Hallam Foe

Alfred Bauer Prize: (for innovative work) Sai bo gu ji man gwen chan a / I'm A Cyborg, But That's Ok by Park Chan-wook


Honorary Golden Bear: Arthur Penn

Berlinale Camera: Gianni Miná, Màrta Mészáros, Ron Holloway and Dorothea Moritz


Best First Feature Award: Vanaja by Rajnesh Domalpalli


International Short Film Competition

Golden Bear: Raak by Hanro Smitsman (The Netherlands)

Silver Bear (ex aequo): Decroche by Manuel Schapira (France) and Mei by Arvin Chen (USA-Taiwan, China)

Prix UIP: Rotten Apple by Ralitza Petrova (UK)

The DAAD Short Film Award: Annem Sinema Ögreniyor by Nesimi Yetik (Turkey)


Generation Awards

Generation Kplus Children's Jury Awards

Crystal Bear for Best Feature Film: Dek Hor / Dorm by Songyos Sugmakanan

Special Mention: Mukhsin by Yasmin Ahmad

The Crystal Bear for Best Short Film: Menged by Daniel Taye Workou

Special Mention: Land gewinnen / Gaining Ground by Marc Brummund

Generation 14plus Youth Jury Awards

The Crystal Bear for the Best Feature Film: Adama Meshuga'at / Sweet Mud by Dror Shaul

Special Mention: The Fall by Tarsem Singh

International Jury of Generation Kplus

Grand Prix of the Deutsches Kinderhilfswerk for Best Feature Film: Mukhsin by Yasmin Ahmad

Special Mention: Dek Hor / Dorm by Songyos Sugmakanan

Grand Prix of the Deutsches Kinderhilfswerk for Best Short Film: Land gewinnen / Gaining Ground by Marc Brummund

Special Mention: Drengen i kufferten / Having a Brother by Esben Toft Jacobsen


Prizes of the Ecumenical Jury

Competition: Tu ya de hun shi / Tuya's Marriage by Wang Quan'an

Panorama: Luo Ye Gui Gen / Getting Home by Zhang Yang

Forum: Chrigu by Jan Gassmann and Christian Ziörjen


Prizes of the FIPRESCI (International Film Critics) Juries

Competition: Obsluhoval jsem anglického krále / I Served the King of England by Jirí Menzel

Panorama: Takva / Takva - A Man's Fear of God by Özer Kiziltan

Forum: Jagdhunde / Hounds by Ann-Kristin Reyels


Prize of the Guild of German Art House Cinemas: Hallam Foe
by David Mackenzie


C.I.C.A.E. (International Confederation of Art House Cinemas) Awards

Panorama: The Bubble by Eytan Fox

Forum: Heimatklänge / Echoes of Home by Stefan Schwietert


Label Europa Cinemas Award: El Camino de los Ingleses / Summer Rain by Antonio Banderas


Manfred Salzgeber Prize: (to a film “that broadens the boundaries of cinema today”) The Tracey Fragments by Bruce McDonald

Special Mention: Boldog új élet / Happy New Life by Árpád Bogdán


Teddy Awards (for films with gay content)

Best Feature Film: Ci-Qing / Spider Lillies by Zero Chou

Special Mention for cinematography: La León by Santiago Otheguy

Best Documentary Film: A Walk into the Sea: Danny Williams and the Warhol Factory by Esther B. Robinson

Spcial Teddy: Helmut Berger, for his body of work

Teddy Audience Award: Notes on a Scandal by Richard Eyre


Dialogue en perspective Award: (for films screened in the German Cinema Perspective sidebar) Prinzessinnenbad / Pool of Princesses by Bettina Blümner

Special Mention: Hotel Very Welcome by Sonja Heiss


Caligari Film Prize:(for a film screened in the Forum) Kurz davor ist es passiert / It Happened Just Before by Anja Salomonowitz

Special Mention: Wolfsbergen by Nanouk Leopold


NETPAC (Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema) Prize (ex aequo): Tuli by Auraeus Solito and Ichijiku no kao / Faces of a Fig Tree by Momoi Kaori


Peace Film Prize: Goodbye Bafana by Bille August

Amnesty International Film Prize: När Mörkret Faller / When Darkness Falls by Anders Nilsson

Femina Film Prize: (for “outstanding artistic contribution of a female technician”) Editor Bettina Böhler for Yella by Christian Petzold


Readers Juries and Audience Awards

Panorama Audience Award: Blindsight by Lucy Walker

The Berliner Morgenpost Readers' Jury Award: (for a film in the Competition section) Irina Palm by Sam Garbarski

The Siegessäule Readers' Jury Award: (for a film with gay content) The Bubble by Eytan Fox

The Tagesspiegel Readers' Jury: (for a film in the Forum) Heimatklänge by Stefan Schwietert


Prizes of the Berlinale Talent Campus

Volkswagen Score Competition Award: (for sound designers and composers) Ilja Coric

Berlin Today Award: (for a short film about Berlin) Kasia Klimkiewicz (Poland) and Andrew Friedman (USA) for Wasserschlacht - The Great Border Battle


International Competition Jury: American director-screenwriter Paul Schrader (president), Palestinian actress Hiam Abbass, German actor Mario Adorf, American actor Willem Dafoe, Mexican actor Gael García Bernal, Hong Kong producer Nansun Shi, and Danish film editor Molly Malene.

Best First Feature Jury: Judy Counihan, Niki Karimi, and Gerhard Meixner

International Short Film Jury: Peace Anyiam-Fiberesima (Nigeria), Riina Sildos (Estonia), Ning Ying (China)

Generation Children's Jury: Can Deniz Binici, Sandra Botzet, Liliann Fischer, Maïmouna Guirassy, Maxim Michaelis, Anita Oberlin, Mara Ohlhoff, Sammy Steward, Paul Trabhardt, Ngoc Diep Lila Tran, and Moritz Wagner

Generation Youth Jury: Lena-Lotte Agger, Silvia Dudek, Elif Erönder, Till Gerber, Adam Heise, Jean-Marc Philippe Montag and Ruby Reimann

International Jury of the Generation Kplus Competition: Andreas Steinhöfel, Sitora Alieva, Justin Johnson, Leontine Petit, and Reza Bagher

Ecumenical Jury: Charles Martig (jury president). Angelika Obert, Théo Peporte, Anita Uzulniece, Marjorie Suchocki, Katharina Zeckau

FIPRESCI Juries: Phillip Bergson, Heike Hurst, Jerzy Plazewski (Competition); José Carlos Avellar, Jürgen Kiontke, Dinko Tucakovic (Panorama); Salome Kikaleishvili, Dana Linssen, Rüdiger Suchsland (Forum)

Guild of German Art House Cinemas Jury: Adrian Kutter, Werner Renneke, Burkhard Hofmann

C.I.C.A.E. Jury: Stephanie Flauger, Nikos Grigoriadis, Marianne Piquet in the Panorama; Katri Laiho, Ursula Philipp Schürmann, Davide Zanza in the Forum

Label Europa Cinemas Jury: Georgette Ranucci, Michal Drobny, Christian Schmalz, Staš Ravter

Manfred Salzgeber Prize Jury: Udi Aloni, Kanako Hayashi, and Jost Hering

Teddy Jury: Charlie Boudreau (jury president), Ailton Franco Jr., Frédéric Arends, Kam Wai Kui, Michaela Pnacekova, Raymond Phathanavirangoon, Jason Plourde, Fanney Tsimong

Dialogue en perspective Jury: Mathilde Bonnefoy (president), Anja Göbel, Michael Hack, Anton Ludwig, Stéphane Demoustier, Aurore Giraudon, Thomas Hochmann, Elisabeth Scherrer

Caligari Film Jury: Rolf-Rüdiger Hamacher, Peter Link, Beate Preisler

NETPAC Jury: Budi Irawanto (president), Intishal al Timimi and Yang Yong-hi

Peace Film Prize Jury: Harriet Eder, Christoph Heubner, Wilma Pradetto, Monica Chana Puginier, Simone Schmollack, Michael Schorr, Marianne Wündrich-Brosien

Amnesty International Film Prize Jury: Christiane Paul, Ayfer Ergün, and Dietmar Kammerer

Femina Jury: Sophie Maintigneux, Katharina Sykora, and Monika Treut

Volkswagen Score Competition Jury: Martin Steyer, Martin Todsharow and Jan Kaczmarek


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