Here are the winners of New Directors Award 2020!

New Directors Award is Kosmorama’s competition program dedicated to the filmmakers of the future. The filmmakers in this program are new voices in the global film world that we believe will be important in the years to come. In addition to the high quality of the films in this program, the directors distinguish themselves as extraordinary storytellers and/or cinematographers.

The criteria for the nominees for the New Directors Award is that they have not made more than three feature films. Kosmorama’s program department has nominated the nine competing films. These make up our New Directors Program Series. A professional jury appoints the winner of the New Directors Award.

The nominated films for 2020 were: A Son, Alice, Beanpole, Buoyancy, Honey Boy, Uncle, The Farewell, The House of Us and You Deserve a Lover.

The members of this year’s NDA jury are the former head of film at Kosmorama Ola Lund Renolen, artistic director at the Dutch Noordeljiik Film Festival Fredau Buwalda and producer Marina Guinness from Ireland.

The jury’s assessment:

Special mention:

Cinema is storytelling with pictures. This film deserves a special mention in that matter.

What is told in between the words, in the details between the scenes, in everyday routines and how humans relate to one another and depend on each other. It’s a lovely study of how jealous people can mind each other, and how much one can love the unlovely.

The film also poses uncomfortable questions about the lives young people can expect on a modern farm, with machinery for company instead of people. Still, beauty can be found within this very uncompromising world of two very silent individuals.

A special mention is to honour the danish scriptwriter, producer, director, cinematographer and editor – an auteur in the true meaning of the word – Mr. Frelle Petersen and his second feature film Uncle.

Special mention:

We expected from the start that the life he was cheerfully signing up for wouldn’t turn out as the young man had planned and hoped for. It would for sure become nasty and brutal.

Hopefully, this film will make some people pause to think about how life in a seeming paradise actually is.

Several deaths into the film, revenge with a weapon fashioned from the thigh bone of one so casually dumped at sea, had you rooting for the survival of the young hero.  This strong film needs to be seen and talked about and deserves a special mention.

The Australian filmmaker Rodd Rathjen has made a significant statement about a problematic issue on the shores of his country. A special mention goes to his first feature film Buoyancy.


New Directors Award – the jury prize

The New Directors Award goes to a powerful film with a strong central story.

Developing further, adding layer upon layer, creating a complex story.

The director manages to juggle everything and elegantly sums up all the treads at the end.

The cinematography is also excellent, with beautifully lyrical desert scenes.

Some scenes will stay in our memory forever, like the faceless children in their beds, being wakened and called to the floor.

The main story makes you think about the side casualties of war in modern times. The film underscores a lot of what is wrong in a theocracy. And all that is wrapped up in an emotional rollercoaster of a family drama.

The New Directors Award at Kosmorama 2020 goes to the Tunisian director Mehdi M. Barsaoui and his film A Son.

New Directors – The Audience Award (Publikumsprisen)

Throughout the week, the audience will have the chance to vote for their favourites in the New Directors category. Having counted the voting slips, we’re happy to announce that the film Uncle by the Danish director Frelle Petersen has won the audience award for Kosmorama 2020!

Uncle offers a quiet and poetical outlook on everyday life. 27-year-old Kris lives together with her old and disabled uncle on a farm in Southern Jutland. As well as caring for her uncle after he’s had a stroke, she also has to look after the farm. Kris saves a calf during labour, and her passion for the veterinary profession is reawakened. She develops a friendship with the local vet, and gradually she discovers a world outside of the farm.

We congratulate both winners!


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