Barnefilmfestivalen April 27—May 2 2021
The 24th edition of Kristiansand International Children’s Film Festival handed out their eight awards on Saturday, May 1. The festival took place both online and at the cinema this year. The online program for schools consisted of 74 titles, while the cinema program was a last-minute possibility and consisted of 14 films.
The BFF Film Award
The BFF Film Award is an import prize, which is awarded to a foreign film. The award is a trophy and a diploma, in addition to NOK 50.000 to the Norwegian distributor who imports the film and gives it a theatrical release in Norway. This year’s winner is the German film Mission Ulja Funk, directed by Barbara Kronenberg. The jury statement says:
"One film stood out and took us on a special and very entertaining road trip through Europe. The film has a smart, funny and well-written script with humour suited for both children and adults. The film has a rich and imaginative fictional universe with quirky and colourful characters, and both the characters and the events are exciting and engaging."
The jury – consisting of cinema director Jørgen Søderberg Jansen, director Christian Lo and film critic Cathrine Sordal – also awarded the BFF Short Film Award. This award is presented to the best Norwegian short film, and the winner was URSA – the Song of the Northern Lights, by director Natalia Malykhina. The film is now shortlisted for this year's Amanda Awards – the Norwegian equivalent of the Oscars. The jury said the film is "moving and engaging with beautiful animation and a serious message about climate change as a backdrop". In addition, the jury awarded an honorable mention to Cramps by Thea Hvistendahl.
Local champion at the pitch competition
This year marked the fourth year of Barnefilmfestivalen and the media fund Zefyr’s annual pitching competition. Eight TV series or feature film ideas were presented, and local film maker Kristian Landmark won the award of NOK 100.000. The jury – consisting of CEO of KinoSør Kim Skarning Andersen, script consultant Kirsten Bonnén Rask and CEO of Zefyr Magnus Thomassen – said of the project Høsten:
“The jury finds it refreshing to see a project that deals with life’s big questions, in such an original way, and we are thrilled by the tough, smart and multidimensional heroine of the story.”
Children’s and Youth juries
The festival let’s children and youth have a say as well. Six children aged 12-14 and eight students at a local high school comprise two juries, each electing a feature film and short film winner.
The UNG Award for Best Youth Film went to Sarah Gavron’s Rocks, while Kerren Lumer-Klabber’s Papapa took home the award for short film. The children's jury awarded Migrants by directorial team Hugo Caby, Zoé Devise, Antoine Dupriez, Aubin Kubiak and Lucas Lermytte best short film, and Calamity, a Childhood of Martha Jane Cannary best feature. Of the latter, they said that they "loved the film’s unique animation and absolutely gorgeous design".
Calamity, a Childhood of Martha Jane Cannary was also awarded the ECFA award for best European feature film. The jury consisted of Atle Hunnes Isaksen (Norway), Mariella Harpelunde Jensen (Denmark) and Kevin De Ridder (Belgium). The film is nominated for the ECFA award to be presented at the 2022 Berlinale.
To read the complete jury statements and view a list of the winners, click here.