august 31
september 10

2016 Venice Days Award Goes to a The War Show

The Jury for the Venice Days Award, chaired by the Canadian artist Bruce LaBruce, has bestowed the 2016 Venice Days Award on the following film from the Official Selection:
The War Show by Andreas Dalsgaard and Obaidah Zytoon

The Jury is composed of the participants in the 28 Times Cinema program: 28 young cinephiles from as many countries in the European Union, selected by the exhibitors in the Europa Cinemas circuit and invited to Venice by the European Parliament LUX Prize, in collaboration with Cineuropa.

The award carries a cash prize of €20,000, to be equally divided between the director and the international distributor of the film; the latter is urged to use the sum received to promote the winning film.

At the conclusion of the official selection, which consisted of 11 films from 15 different countries this year, the Jury convened this morning, its proceedings open to the public and livestreamed on Venice Days' Facebook channel, to discuss the three films that had garnered the most votes in the previous voting sessions:
Heartstone by Guğmundur Arnar Guğmundsson
Hounds of Love by Ben Young
The War Show by Andreas Dalsgaard and Obaidah Zytoon

The reasons for the exclusion of the 8 other films in competition from the above shortlist and from the final deliberations were reviewed, after which the entire jury took part in a run-off vote between two titles that produced a winner. By so doing, after the 28 jurors' initial lack of consensus over the titles in the running for the 2016 Venice Days Award, they were able to declare the Syrian film The War Show best film of this year's edition.

Jury Motivation on the Venice Days Award
The War Show provoked an impassioned response from the jury. We were immediately struck by the political and social significance and urgency of the film, while also appreciating its daring and innovative approach to filmmaking. We deliberated on whether or not this harrowing documentary should be included alongside the rest of the Venice Days lineup, which was comprised of narrative fiction features. However, we came to the conclusion that the film worked on its own merits as an outstandingly crafted piece of cinema, not simply one that appealed to our moral conscience. The War Show is also an incredibly topical film that sheds light on an ongoing conflict that is too often ignored or misrepresented by the media. We believe it is a film that each and every one of us should see.

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