Uzbekistani family drama Sunday, directed by Shokir Kholikov, was named best film of the 25th Shanghai International Film Festival’s Asian New Talent section, which honors distinguished works by emerging regional filmmakers.

Sunday tells the story of an elderly couple living a peaceful life in a remote village, with their oldest son residing nearby and their youngest son working abroad. It depicts the conflicting dreams and dramas between two generations.

The Asian New Talents jury awarded the best director prize two filmmakers: Kazakhstan’s Aisultan Seit for Qash; and China’s Luo Dong won for May.

The best actor award went to 10-year-old actor Yue Hao, who plays the leading role in the Chinese film Day Dreaming. Best actress was given to Sorour Peyrovani, the lead of Iranian film 1.5 Horsepower.  

“Every film in the [in the lineup] is very insightful with mature technology. Also, the subject is contemporary, to express the in-depth thinking of society and humanity,” said Aktan Arym Kubat, chair of Asian New Talent section’s jury. “I have encountered many difficulties but remain obsessed with filming excellent works. So, I really hope that the young and talented filmmakers like you could keep creating and contributing to the film industry. “

In their official joint statement, the Asian New Talent jury said, “The new directors’ works are quite mature, and the subject matters are also innovative. They don’t look like novices anymore.”

Shanghai’s main competition jury, headed by legendary Polish filmmaker Jerzy Skolimowski, will hand out the festival’s top-prize Golden Goblet Awards on Sunday.

Shanghai Asian New Talent Section Awards

Best Film
Sunday dir. Shokir Kholikov (Uzbekistan)

Best Director (joint winners)
Aisultan Seit for Qash (Kazakhstan)
Luo Dong for May (China)

Best Actor
Yue Hao in Day Dreaming dir. Wang Zichuan (China)

Best Actress
Sorour Peyrovani in 1.5 Horsepower dir. Rasool Kahani (Iran)

Best Screenplay
Chen Xiaoyu for Gone With the Boat (China)

Best Cinematographer
Davood Malek Hosseini for Cause of Death: Unknown dir. Ali Zarnegar (Iran)


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