San Sebastian 2013

Congratulations to Mariana Rondón, Concha de Oro winner with her film "Pelo Malo".
This year, for the second time in the history of the San Sebastian Film Festival a female director’s work won the Golden Shell for Best Film. Diane Kurys was the last woman to win the same award exactly 30 years ago.


Bad Hair chronicles the relationship between a little boy, Junior and his single mother, Marta trying to make end’s meet in Caracas. As the boy becomes more and more obsessed with the appearance of his hair, his mother finds it increasingly difficult to relate to her son. Under pressure, Junior is forced to face a serious decision.

Pelo Malo is Mariana Rondón’s third film. Her previous two projects (At Midnight and a Half, 2000; Postcards from Leningrad, 2007) together were featured at more than 60 international festivals and woof Todd Haynes, chairman of the official jury, there were three female and three male film n 27 awards.

While the number of female filmmakers throughout all the various sections of the film festival is rather low, there was a balanced presence among the jury members for each section.


Official Jury

The Uruguay-born producer Mariela Besuievsky, formerly taught at the Madrid Film School, as well as at the International Film School in Cuba. Besuievsky’s works have featured in several international film festivals, such as Venice in 2010 (The Last Circus, dir. Ales de la Iglesia – Silver Lion); Cannes in 2000 (Waiting List, dir. Juan Carlos Tabío), or the San Sebastian Film Festival in 2003 (The Galíndez File, dir. Gerardo Herrero – Official Selection).

 She has also worked in international co-productions with world-famous directors such as Francis Ford Coppola, Juan José Campanella, Eric Rohmer or Paul Auster. Among her films in post-production is Isabel Coixet’s Panda Eyes.

Valeria Bruni Tedeschi, actress-screenwriter-director. Having worked as an actress in prestigious projects in France and Italy since 1987, Tedeschi took to screenwriting and directing in the late 90s. Her semi-autobiographical film, Il est plus facile pour un chameau / It’s Easier for a Camel proved to be a great success at the Tribeca Film Festival. Her next film Actrices / Actresses won the Un Certain Regard special jury prize in Cannes 2007. With her latest work, Un Chateau en Italie / A Castle in Italy Tedeschi participated as the only female director in the official selection of the Cannes International Film Festival 2013.


The Chilean Paulina García has directed and acted in numerous theatre shows in her country. She also starred in several internationally recognised films, such as Sebastián Leilo’s Gloria, which won the Films in Progress Award at the 2012 San Sebastian Film Festival.

With her role, García earnt the Best Actress Awards of the Lima and Valparaíso festivals, as well as the Silver Bear for Best Actress at the Berlin International Film Festival in 2013.

Kutxa-New Directors Award

The head jury of this year’s New Directors section was Maria Stavenhagen, Mexican screenwriter and teacher. Amongst her works are award winning feature films, such as En medio de la nada / In the Middle of Nowhere (Hugo Rodríguez, 1992 – Grand Prix Fecimex, Best Feature Film), De la calle / Streeters (Gerardo Tort, 2001 – New Directors Award, San Sebastian Film Festival), Viaje redondo / Round Trip (Gerardo Tort, 2009 – Guadalajara International Film Festival, Best Film). Besides playing an active role in the Mexican and international film festival scene, including the founding of the International Festival for Film Schools and the International Encounters of Documentary Film, she has also acted as the Director General of the Mexican Film Institute.

Born in Southern Spain, Carmen Cobos worked for the BBC, then went on to produce internationally acclaimed films in her own productions company in the Netherlands. Some of her most successful projects were: The Player, Last Victory and Wrong Time Wrong by John Appel, Comrade Couture by Marco Wilms, El olvido / Oblivion and Forever by Heddy Honigmann. .


She has participated in several film festivals throughout Europe as jury member and acted as advisor for a number of film funds, as well as tutor for European and Latin American film organisations

Sophie Mirouze, the artistic coordinator of the La Rochelle International Film Festival joined the festival in 2003, having previously worked in production, cinema management and international sales.

Latin Horizons

The Horizons Award jury only had one female member, the actress Adriana Ugarte.

Starting her career at the young age of 16, Adriana Ugarte etsablished her name in the profession by starring in films such as Cabeza de perro / The Dogs’s Head(2006), or the historical series La señora / The Lady (2008-2010).

Female Directors at the Festival

Official Selection

Out of 16 directors of films in the official selection, there were two women.

One of them isJasmila Žbanić, who graduated from the Academy of Performing Arts in Sarajevo. Her first feature film Grbavica won the Golden Bear at the Berlin International Film Festival.

Her film presented at the San Sebastián Film Festival, For Those Who Can Tell No Tales, is about an Australian tourist in Serbia, who is confronted with the distressing historical past of the places she visits.

New Directors

The New Directors section also had two women among the competing directors.

Isabel Ayguavivesmade several short films – all accredited at international film festivals - before her first full length feature film, El árbol magnético / The Magnetic Tree, presented at this year’s San Sebastian Film Festival. Her movie tells the tale of a young boy, who, on a trip to his birth place and a visit to the legendary “magnetic tree”, reconnects with some of his forgotten feelings.

Mariana Chenillowon more than 20 awards with her first feature film, Nora’s Will (2008). In her film titled Paradise, she focuses on the challenges an overweight couple has to face in a beauty-centred society when moving to the capital.

Puppy Love was Delphine Lehericey’s debut as a feature film director. It is a coming-of-age movie, telling the tale of a 14 year-old girl and her strange relationship with her new friend, as well as her sexual awakening.

Latin Horizons

The two Uruguayan directors, Ana Guevara and Leticia Jorge graduated from the same university in communication and have been working as scriptwriters and directors ever since. Their first feature film shown at the San Sebastian Festival, Tanta Agua / So Much Water, won the Films in Progress

Award last year in San Sebastian and took the Best Opera Prima Award in Guadalajara.

The young Brazilian director, producer and screenwriter, Caru Alves de Souza has appeared at the San Sebastian Film Festival before. Her first feature film, De menor /Underage(2012) was presented in the Films in Progress section in both San Sebastian and Toulouse. Underage is about a young attorney, whose relationship with a teenage boy is put to the test when he commits a crime.

Lucía Puenzo writer and film director participated with her third feature film at the festival - El médico alemán – Wakolda / The German Doctor – Wakolda, 2013). It is the story of an Argentinian family’s encounter with a peculiar doctor from Germany in the 1960s.

Her two previous films were highly successful, as well. XXYwon the Grand Prix at Cannes, as well as the Best Film Award at the Goya film festival. Her film El niño /The Child featured at the Berlin International Film Festival. Puenzo has also published several novels.

Victoria Galardi also took part in the festival with her third feature film, Pensé que iba a haber fiesta / I Thought It Was a Party (2012), a short but complicated love story between a woman and her sister’s ex-husband. Her previous two films were Amorosa soledad / Lovely Loneliness and Cerro Bayo, both shown at the festival in previous years.

Pearls

The Pearls section contained 16 of the best movies not yet released in Spain, the competition decided by the audience instead of a professional jury. There weren’t any films in this section from female directors.

Zabaltegi

A non-competitive section of the festival, allowing for the most diverse round-up of films to be shown.

The Family Tour by Liliana Torresis about a young woman, who, once again, has to face her childhood on a family visit after several years spent abroad. Torres graduated in directing in Barcelona and specialised in documentaries in Mexico City. Her works include: the shorts Anteayer / The Day Before Yesterday (2005), Quinze años / Fifteen Years( 2012), the documentary Todos los trabajos de la mujer / All the Work of the Woman. The Family Touris her feature film debut.

Hotzanak, For Your Own Safety is a handmade animation by Izibene Oñederra, who studied fine arts. Her first animated movie, Hezurbeltzak, una cosa común received numerous awards.

The co-director of Thomas Szabó in the film Minuscula – Valley of the Lost Ants was Hélene Giraud, art director and designer of video games and animated films (Renaissance, Germs).

The Rabbit Womanwas directed by Veronica Chen, member of the Argentinian Film Academy (Academia Argentina de Cine). Both her previous films won a series of prizes at international festivals such as San Francisco, Locarno, Palm Springs, Malaga and Amiens.

Culinary Cinema

Inspired by the event of the Berlinale under the same title, Culinary Cinema was launched in 2010 at the San Sebastian Festival.

The Final Recipeof Gina Kim chronicles the hardships of the owner of a traditional restaurant and his grandson, who tries to save the business by entering a cooking contest. Gina Kim’s previous feature films have screened at prestigious film festivals.

Teresa Fabik’s thrid feature film, Love and Lemons is about a young chef, who faces unexpected challenges and adventures when her old life falls apart. After graduating from the Stockholm Film School, Teresa Fabik went on to write the feature films Hip Hip Hora! (The Ketchup Effect) and Prinsessa (Starring Maja).

Lara Izagirreproduced and directed the short film Sormenaren Bide Ezkutuak about a chef’s work and the creation of a gourmet menu. As is the case of her present project, Lara Izagirre has produced and directed all of her feature films and documentaries herself.

Savage Cinema

The non-competitive section Savage Cinema was created in collaboration with the Red Bull Media House to present adventure and action sport films.

The only woman in this section was Lucy Walker documentary director, former theatre director. Her previous projects have won various awards at the Sundance and Berlin Festivals: Waste Land (2010) and The Tsunami and the Cherry Blossom (2011). They were also nominated for an Academy Award.

Made in Spain

The Made in Spain showcases the most interesting Spanish movies of the yer.

15 years + 1 year by Gracia Querejetahas already won four awards at the Malaga Film Festival. Previous projects of Querejeta include Transit Station (1992), Robert Ryland’s Last Journey (1994), or When You Come Back to Me (1999), nominated for eight Goya awards. Her 2004 film Héctor was selected best film in Malaga, while her Seven Billiard Tables won Best Screenplay in San Sebastian in 2007.

Isabel Coixet has been making films in English since 1996. Her first international success was My Life without Me (2003). Her next work, The Secret Life of Words (2005) won the Goya for the Best Film, Best Director, Best Production Supervision and Best Screenplay. Her film shown in San Sebastian was presented in the Panorama section of the Berlinale 2013, besides winning awards in Malaga.

The Plague is the first feature film of Neus Ballús, who formerly worked on documentaries, such as The Grandfatherand the Camera (2005), or Immersion.

Films for Kids

In the Films for Kids section, one out of five films was directed by a female director: Doraemon the Movie. Nobita in the Secret Gadgets Museum by Yukiyo Teramoto is the latest in the famous Doraemon series, from which Teramoto directed three.

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