European Film Awards winners: Oscar contender ‘The Square’ sweeps

Ruben Ostlund‘s satire “The Square” swept the European Film Academy Awards on Saturday (Dec. 9), winning six awards including both Best Film and Best Comedy. Ostlund claimed both the writing and directing awards for his savage satire set in the high stakes art world with dialogue in Swedish and English and starring Elisabeth Moss and Dominic West.

In addition, the film’s Swedish leading man Claes Bang won Best Actor and Josefin Åsberg picked up the Best Production Design prize during a ceremony in Berlin, Germany. “The Square” won the Palme d’Or at Cannes and was submitted by Sweden in this year’s Oscar race for Foreign-Language Film.

The Hungarian entry, “On Body and Soul,” also earned bragging rights as Alexandra Borbely won Best Actress.

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Among the other winners were “Loving Vincent” (Best Animated Feature) and “Communion” (Best Documentary Feature). And “Lady Macbeth,” which is a leading contender at the British Independent Film Awards, won the Discovery Award for neophyte director William Oldroyd.

Winners of the 30th edition of these awards were decided by the 3,000 plus members of the academy, drawn from all parts of Europe.

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Last year, “Toni Erdmann” swept the European Film Academy Awards on Saturday (Dec. 10), winning Best Film, both writing and directing for Maren Ade and both acting trophies (Peter Simonischek, Sandra Huller). It lost the Oscar race for Best Foreign Language Film to “The Salesman” by Iranian filmmaker Asghar Farhadi.

In 2015,  “Youth” won Best European Film, Actor (Michael Caine) and Director (Paolo Sorrentino) but that awards attention did not translate into any Oscar nominations. However, Charlotte Rampling did parlay her Best European Actress win for “45 Years” into an Oscar nomination. And eventual Oscar winner “Amy” was named Best European Documentary.


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