FESTIVALS: Norwegian Film Gritt Wins 2021 Vilnius IFF


    VILNIUS: Gritt by Norwegian director Itonje Søimer Guttormsen was awarded Best Film in the European Debut Competition of the 26th Vilnius International Film Festival, which was held online 18 March - 5 April 2021. Residents of Vilnius and Kaunas were able to check-in to hotels for short vacations with unlimited digital screenings.

    The Audience Award went to Jasmila Žbanić’s Oscar-nominated Quo Vadis, Aida?, which will continue to be available on-demand alongside other winning films. Viewers also picked Swamp / Pelkė by Klementas Davidavičius as their favourite Lithuanian film, and The Little Bird and the Bees by Lena von Döhren as best short film.

    The FIPRESCI Prize, awarded to a film produced in the Baltic region, went to People We Know Are Confused / Žmonės, kuriuos pažįstam from the Lithuanian director Tomas Smulkis.

    Ten feature films were selected for the European Debut Competition. The winners were chosen online by a jury consisting of the artistic director of Venice Film Festival’s Giornate degli Autori Gaia Furrer, Canadian filmmaker Denis Côté, Hungarian filmmaker Lili Horvát, vice-president of content at MUBI Daniel Kasman and Lithuanian producer Marija Razgutė.

    According to preliminary data, 100,000 viewers streamed the festival lineup. “We’re glad that the language of film transcended our physical separation, providing an unparalleled sense of community and closeness”, said Algirdas Ramaška, Head of Vilnius IFF.


    European Debut Competition:

    Best Film:
    Gritt (Norway)
    Directed by Itonje Søimer Guttormsen

    Best Director:
    Ainhoa Rodríguez for Mighty Flash (Spain)

    Best Actress:
    Birgitte Larsen for Gritt (Norway)
    Directed by Itonje Søimer Guttormsen

    Best Actor:
    Pierre Deladonchamps for Rascal (France)
    Directed by Peter Dourountzis

    FIPRESCI Prize:
    People We Know Are Confused (Lithuania)
    Directed by Tomas Smulkis
    Produced by Just a Moment
    Supported by the Lithuanian Film Centre

    Special Mention:
    Feast (the Netherlands)
    Directed by Tim Leyendekker

    Best Short Film:
    Places / Miegamasis rajonas (Lithuania)
    Directed by Vytautas Katkus

    Special Mention (Short film):
    Fish Like Us (Austria)
    Directed by Raphaela Schmid

    Audience Award for International Film:
    Quo Vadis, Aida? (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Austria, Romania, the Netherlands, Germany, Poland, France, Norway)
    Directed by Jasmila Žbanić
    Produced by Deblokada (BA)
    Coproduced by coop99 filmproduktion (AT), Digital Cube (RO), N279 (HOL), Razor Film (DE), Extreme Emotions (PL), Indie Prod, Torden Film (NO), TRT,  ZDF arte, ORF (Film/Television-Agreement), BHRT (BA)
    Supported by EurimagesVlada FBiH – Ministarstvo obrazovanja, the Romanian Film CentreFondacija za kinematografiju Sarajevo, the Austrian Film Institute, the Netherlands Film Fund, the Netherlands Film Incentive, the Polish Film Institute, Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg, ACM, CNC, IF, Filmfonds Wien, Sørfond, Creative Europe, Ministarstvo kulture i sporta Kantona Sarajevo, the Foundation Open Society Institute

    Audience Award for Lithuanian Film:
    Swamp / Pelkė
    Directed by Klementas Davidavičius
    Produced by the Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre, and Artbox
    Supported by the Lithuanian Film Centre

    Audience Award for Short Film:
    The Little Bird and the Bees (Germany)
    Directed by Lena von Döhren