(By Amélie Martínez & Clàudia C. Salellas/CNA)
The thriller ‘El Niño’, directed by Daniel Monzón, was the most decorated film at last night’s Gaudí Awards with seven awards, including those for Best Supporting Actress, Best Supporting Actor, Best Original Music, Best Sound, Best Cinematography, Best Editing and Best Producer.
The film ‘10,000 km’, directed by Carlos Marques-Marcet, won five awards including Best Director, Best Actress and Best Actor, outdoing the other nominees. However, Maria Ripoll’s movie ‘Rastres de Sàndal’ was chosen as Best Film in the Catalan language. This 7th edition of the Awards ceremony was also marked by complaints concerning the lack of financial aid for the cultural industry in Catalonia.
The 7th annual ceremony of the Gaudi awards organised by the Catalan Film Academy took place on Sunday evening at the Sant Jordi Club not only to reward the best films of Catalonia, but also to place the spotlight on the Catalan film industry.
The favourites lived up to their promise
‘El Niño’ and ‘10,000 km’ were the biggest winners at the gala event. ‘El Niño’, directed by Daniel Monzón, was the favorite film in the competition overall with some 15 nominations. The thriller eventually won seven awards for Best Photography for Carles Gusi, Best Producer for Edmon Roch and Toni Novella, Best Montage for Mapa Pastor, Best Supporting Actress for Bárbara Lennie, as well as Best Supporting Actor for Eduard Fernández, who unfortunately made a slip while thanking the Catalan Academy for his “Goya” (the awards given by the Spanish Film Academy).
The award for Best Original Music went to Roque Baños and that for Best Sound to Marc Orts, Oriol Tarragó and Sergio Bürmann.
The film ‘10,000 km’ came second in a number of categories and won in five others: Best movie in non-Catalan language, Best Director for Carlos Marques-Marcet, Best Script for Carlos Marques-Marcet and Clara Roquet, Best Actress for Natalia Tena, and Best Actor for David Verdaguer.
Surprises and twists
Some potential winners at the ceremony came away almost empty-handed. This was the case for ‘Stella Cadente’, a drama directed by Lluís Miñarro, which was nominated in 13 categories and appeared to be the main competitor of ‘El Niño’. However, the movie led by Àlex Brendemühl, only won two awards for Best Costume by Mercè Paloma and Best Art Direction for Sebastián Vogler.
Despite its nomination in nine categories, ‘REC 4: Apocalipsis’ directed by Jaume Balagueró also received only two awards, for Best Special/Digital Effects and Best Makeup and Hairdressing. The films ‘Hermosa juventud’, ‘Born’, and ‘L’altra frontera’ competed in five, four and three categories respectively but came away with nothing. The ceremony had one final surprise: ‘Rastres de Sàndal’ by Maria Ripoll competed in nine categories but won just one prize, but it was the most important: Best Movie in Catalan Language.
International Awards and Best Animated Film makes its debut
The Best Documentary award went to ‘Gabor’ directed by Sebastián Alfie, who collected the prize accompanied by its protagonist, a Hungarian blind filmmaker. The Catalan and Brazilian production ‘Descalç sobre la terra vermella’ by Oriol Ferrer was chosen as the Best Film for Television. ‘La grande bellezza’ by Paolo Sorrentino was awarded Best European Film. The Best Short Film was ‘El corredor’ directed by José Luis Montesinos. For the first time, this edition offered a Best Animated Film category, which had not appeared in previous years. The winner was ‘Mortadel·lo i Filemó contra Jimmy El Catxondo’ directed by Javier Fesse.
A revindicative night
An Academy Honorary Award was given to Ventura Pons for his career and his contribution to the Catalan film Industry. In his acceptance speech, the Catalan director criticised the Spanish Minister of Culture, José Ignacio Wert, for his mistreatment of Catalan culture.
The President of the Catalan Film Academy, Isona Passola, also complained about the impact of the 21% VAT on the cultural industry because “a country without culture is not rich. A country without culture does not exist” she claimed. In addition, she presented the idea of creating a “Catalan cinema club” in order to make access to Catalan movies easier and to spread Catalan culture throughout Spain and the entire world. She said she felt optimistic about the future, due to the new tax on telephone suppliers approved by the Catalan Ministry of Culture, which will fund subsidies for the local film industry.
Furthermore, the actress Carme Sansa, who gave the Best Film Award to the ‘Rastres de Sàndal’ team, stated that she wanted to celebrate the next Gaudí awards in “a free country”, making reference to the pro-independence movement which has grown over the last few years in Catalonia.