Our 2023 award winners

The International Newcomer Award goes to ›In Flames‹ by Zarra Kahn

Our winning films were honored at the Award Ceremony in the new Karlstorbahnhof Heidelberg on November 23. Speeches were given by the jury, Festival Director Dr. Sascha Keilholz and Heidelberg's Lord Mayor Prof. Dr. Eckart Würzner as well as Catharina Seegelken, Managing Director of the Manfred Lautenschläger Foundation and Juliane Lorenz-Wehling, Managing Director of the Rainer Werner Fassbinder Foundation.

The International Newcomer Award
Despite their narrative and aesthetic differences, the award-winning films are about protagonists who have to assert themselves against adverse realities of life, social and power structures, while conveying a deeply humane message. The main prize of 30,000 euros, the International Newcomer Award, went to ›In Flames‹ by Pakistani director Zarrar Kahn, who accepted the award in person. ›In Flames‹ is a thrilling social portrait in which a young female student fights against the patriarchal power structures in Pakistan and the demons of her own family history.

All other winning films:
The Rainer Werner Fassbinder Award, endowed with 15,000 euros since this year, goes to Nick Pinkerton for the best screenplay for ›The Sweet East‹ by Sean Price Williams. The Young Jury honors ›Without Air‹ by Katalin Moldovai with the Student Award worth 5,000 euros, while ›An Endless Sunday‹ by Alain Parroni receives the Ecumenical Jury Award worth 2,500 euros. The Audience Award, worth 5,000 euros, goes to ›Upon Entry‹ by the directing duo Alejandro Rojas and Juan Sebastián Vásquez. Sofia Exarchou's ›Animal‹ is honored with the FIPRESCI Award. An honorable mention from the International Jury goes to the German entry ›Touched‹ by Claudia Rorarius.

A total of 16 first and second films by outstanding international directing talents competed for six prizes in the competition. Five prizes are awarded by four juries. In addition, the winning film, chosen by the audience, will receive the Audience Award. All competition films can be seen again until November 26.