31st FIFE 2014: the winners and their reactions

The closing night of the 2014 International Environmental Film Festival, organized on February 11th at the Cinéma des cinéastes in Paris, awarded more than eight films, documentaries and webdocumentaries. Here is the list of all the graduates and their early reactions on stage or through Skype, all across the globe.

They voted ! After eight days of screenings and intense debates, the jurys of the Fife 2014 voted for the graduates of the 31st edition. And the winners are…

Grand Prix (awarded by the official jury led by Rémi Bezançon)

Big Men – Les Prochains Rois du pétrole, by Rachel Boynton (USA).

The opinion of Rémi Bezançon president of the official jury :

Big Men reunites the two sides we were looking for : Here is a film that deals with environment, ecology, but also very well produced. It had everything to captivate us through a true investigation around oil stakes. It’s an exciting movie in which we have environment and cinema.”

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Special Jury Award

Calle López, by Gerardo Barroso & Lisa Tillinger (Mexico).

Gerardo Barroso, at home … Calle López, Mexico, through Skype : “We are very moved, thank you ! We have chosen Calle López because we live there with Lisa. This is our neighborhood. Besides, this is where we are right now. People who live here became our friends, and we admire them very much. So, we wanted to share what we saw in them. They are dignified people. They work everyday, and struggle in their lives.”

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Best full-length documentary award (awarded by the official jury)

The Land Between, by David Fedele (Australia)

David Fedele, through Skype in Berlin : “This is amazing ! This is the second time I present a film in the Fife in Paris. To win this year is an extraordinary feeling. The topic of my film can be unusual for an Australian, but it’s been a long time I wanted to do a film about african immigration and the situation between Morocco and Melilla. I bought a one-way ticket for Morocco and, two weeks later, I was in the forest with the migrants.”

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Best Web Documentary Award

Fort McMoney, by David Dufresne (Canada / France)
David Dufresne : “The whole crew is very happy ! Right now, in Montreal, developers are working on our documentary-game ! We can say it’s a kind of a living work, which means the things happen “right here, right now”. The award rewards three years of work for a very big project, which brought together at least more than twenty people. The idea was to extend what we did with Prison Valley. We tried to bring together the game logic with the point of view of the author and to confront the viewers to their responsibilities.”

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Wind, by Robert Löbel (Germany), through a video message : “I won the award ! Thank you very much, I will get a lot of money to do my next films. Yeahh, thank you very much for the award ! It was my first time in Paris, for the Fife, and it was worth coming.”

Two special mentions to :

Premier Automne / Autumn Leaves, by Carlos de Carvalho & Aude Danset (France)
Vigia, by Marcel Barelli (Switzerland) : “The idea of the movie came from my grandfather, and the soundtrack of the film represents one year and a half of work. It was the third film I presented to the festival. If I win everytime, be sure I’ll come back !”

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Short Documentary Award (student jury, led by Michale Boganim)

Ex-aequo :

Alppikatu 25 – Home For The Homeless, by Inka Achté & Marika Väisänen (Finland)

Inka Achté, through Skype from London : “We are both very happy. Tonight, I’ll party with french red wine ! It was a long and difficult film to do. We lost faith very often but the fight was legitimate. We are happy the award comes from France, a country with great movie history.”


Mokan/Palms, by Mohammad Ali Hashemzehi (Iran) : “This is the first time I’m coming in France. I never expected to be awarded. I’m coming from Balouchistan, in Southern Iran. With my movie, I tried to deal with this area and show it with sincerity. There is no environmental festival in Iran, so I will tell about the Fife when I’ll be back in my country because I would like to have a similar festival there.”

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Best Fiction – Audience Award (Audience Award)

La Belle vie, by Jean Denizot (France) : “I’m delighted ! At the beginning, my movie was a news item, the Xavier Fortin case, someone who had a project of ecological life. On a larger scale, I wanted to do cinema and capture nature. I never wanted to do an “art film” but to do cinema, and cinema is for the audience.”

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Eco Kids Award (carried by KissKissBankBank)

Lift Off, by Sandra Welte (Netherlands) : “I’m honored that children liked my film and voted for it ! This is the story of a bird that can’t fly ; but he will find the love of his life in a tree and will have to fly, no matter what happens. He will have to be very inventive to reach his goal…Thank you !”

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Green Film Network Award (awarded on 02/04 by Michèle Sabban, president of GFN jury)

Amazon Gold, directed by Reuben Aaronson.

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