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Georgian Film Wins Top Award In Sarajevo

The opening ceremony of the 23th Sarajevo Film Festival in National Theater Sarajevo

A Georgian film about a woman struggling to reconcile family life and her passion for writing was awarded the prize for best feature film at the 23rd Sarajevo Film Festival.

Three-time Oscar-winning U.S. filmmaker Oliver Stone and British actor John Cleese were also given lifetime achievement awards during the week-long festival, which ended late on August 17.

From among 235 films from 54 countries, the festival's international jury awarded Scary Mother, a debut movie by Georgian director Ana Urushadze, 27, with the Heart of Sarajevo, the festival's main award, which carries a prize of $18,000.

Jurors described the film as "provocative and elegantly directed."

This was the second time a Georgian film has won in Sarajevo after "In Bloom" by directors Nana Ekvtimishvili and Simon Gros won the main prize in 2013.

The Sarajevo Film Festival was founded during the Bosnian war in the 1990s, and since then has grown into the largest industry platform for the region stretching from Austria to Russia and Turkey.

Based on reporting by Reuters and Variety