TEHRAN, Nov. 24 (Mehr News Agency) -- Iranian black and white "Over There" by Abdorreza Kahani grabbed the "Golden Alexander" at the 49th International Thessaloniki Film Festival, Greece.
The awards were handed out to the winners in a ceremony held on Sunday and Kahani received the Golden Alexander (37,000 euroes) for the best feature film of the festival.
In an interview with Mehr News Agency, Kahani expressed satisfaction over winning the award and attributed his award to the civilizations of Iran and Greece.
"When the Greek renowned director Theo Angelopoulos handed me the award, I said that I was not expecting to win the prize. But I am so happy now," he remarked.
"The crew was always complaining about why the film did not have permission to screen in Iran, but then they also became excited upon hearing the news. The jury selected the movie because of its unique structure and theme," he added.
Renowned Greek auteur Theo Angelopoulos (R) awarded Abdorreza Kahani the Golden Alexander for best feature film during the closing ceremony of the 49th International Thessaloniki Film Festival on November 23, 2008. (Mehr)
"Over There" features the story of an old man, who has to make a trip to the United States in order to extend his residency. Mazdak Mir-Abedini, Shahrzad Sokhansanj, Mana Rabiei, Jafar Tavakkoli, Babak Vali, Mehran Ahmadi, and Solmaz Seddiq Afshar are the main cast members of the movie.
Other winners were also selected by the jury of the International Competition Section headed by Canadian writer Michael Ondaatje in a ceremony held on Sunday.
The Special Jury Award "Silver Alexander" went to "Pescuit Sportiv" (Hooked) by Adrian Sitaru, a joint production of Romania and France.
The Best Director Award went to "Celina Murga" for "Una Semana Solos" (A Week Alone) from Argentina.
Ioana Flora and Maria Dinulescu shared the Best Actress Award for "Pescuit Sportiv" and the Best Actor Award went to Sid Lucero and Emilio Garcia for "Selda" (The Inmate.)
Additionally, the Artistic Achievement Award went to Zabolcs Tolnai, for Fövenyóra (Hourglass,) a joint production of Hungary, Serbia and Montenegro.
The Human Values Award went to "Teza" by Haile Gerima from Germany.
The Woman & Equality Award also went to "Snijeg" (SNOW) by Aida Begic, a joint production of Bosnia & Herzegovina, Germany, France, and Iran.
The 49th edition of the festival ran from November 14 to 23.
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