Palm Springs – June 23rd 2019. Today Cinema Without Borders announced Ahmed’s Song (France) – Directed by Foued Mansour, as the winner of GoE’s 2019 Bridging the Borders Award, presented by Cinema Without Borders at the Palm Springs International ShortFest.
This year’s award ceremony festival was held at Grand Ballroom of Riviera Hotel in Palm Springs. Bijan Tehrani, The Editor-in-Chief of CWB, Keely Badger, Executive Director of the Neda Nobari Foundation, and Chris Rhea, Executive Director of GoEnergistics (Award and prize sponsor) presented the award for this year’s GoE Bridging the Borders award winners. Ahmed’s Song filmmaker received a cash prize of $2500 from our generous sponsors.
Green goes to Green (US) directed by Suzanne Andreas Correa received The Bridging The Borders Award Honorable Mention.
The 15 nominees for the 2019 GoE Bridging The Borders Award were: 100 EUR (Australia), Ahmed’s Song (France), Backwards (Israel), Blackwood (Australia), Bodega (USA), Brotherhood – (Canada/Tunisia/Qatar/Sweden), The Clinic (USA), Eva Sola (Germany/Spain), Family (Belgium/France), Fatiya (France), Green (USA) , Just Me and You (Canada/Quebec), The Shepherd (Norway), South of Bix (USA) and, This Is Not a (Iranian) Film (Iran/USA)
In an introduction to the Bridging The Borders Award Bijan Tehrani said: ” Hello everyone, it’s a pleasure to be here. My name is Bijan Tehrani, Founder and Editor in Chief of Cinema Without Borders, an organization dedicated to international and independent cinema. I’m joined by fellow jury member, Keely Badger, Executive Director of the Neda Nobari Foundation, and our award sponsor, Chris Rhea, Executive Director of GoEnergistics.
Cinema Without Borders presents the Bridging the Borders Awards to the films that are most successful in bridging and connecting people through the power of story, and ultimately, bringing the world closer together. The winner of GoE Bridging the Borders Award, receives a $2500 cash award courtesy of our award sponsor, Go Energistics”
Next Keely Badger, Executive Director of the Neda Nobari Foundation and GoE Bridging The Borders Award Jury member mentioned nominees and the honorable mention by the jury members: ” Cinema that transcends borders is a field of independent filmmaking that seeks to tell deep human stories that inspire a ‘revolution’ of the heart. These stories capture critical, complex narratives that reflect societal problems, and some of the most fundamental global struggles of our time. This year’s short selection, not surprisingly, took us around the globe – from Vienna to Tel Aviv, Syria to Turkey, and beyond…exploring the diverse themes of displacement, loss of homeland, and identity, as well as, coming-of-age stories, intergenerational trauma, and finding power in something as simple as a mother’s poem.
Each of these talented filmmakers have captured through their lens stories that are deeply rooted in the ideals of social justice, human rights, and everyday empathy for our fellow neighbors, both near and far, in the hope that viewers will not only be informed and inspired, but most importantly, moved to meaningful action.
I’m also honored to present this year’s Bridging The Borders Honorable Mention goes to a film that follows an undocumented Turkish pedicab driver in New York, as he unwittingly draws police attention, endangering his brother, his community, and himself. The story exposes the everyday struggles and stigmas that immigrants and especially those from the Middle East face daily in the United States. Our Honorable Mention goes to Green, a short, directed by Suzanne Andreas Correa. Mustafa Kaymak, one of the Green producers will receive the Honorable Mention trophy on behalf of director”
Chris Rhea, Executive Director of GoEnergistics announced the winner of the GoE Bridging The Borders Award: “It is an honor for us to play a significant role in the Palm Springs International Short Film Festival working hand and hand with Cinema Without Borders to present the GoE Bridging The Borders Award.
One day, Ahmed, employed at the public baths in Paris, and nearing retirement, encounters Mike, a teenager, adrift. Inside the bathhouse walls, in a place on the verge of disappearing, a strange relationship will develop between these two-fractured souls. This tale, about the encounter between rigor and rebellion, explores an unlikely bond of friendship that challenges and changes how both men see the world.
GoE Bridging the Borders Award winning film represents everything we love about the notion of bridging borders. Filled throughout with the authentic experience of what it means to be human, to long for belonging, comradery and family, the story bridges nationalities, faiths, generations, worldviews and even music genres, to leave audiences with a sense of enduring hope for a world where borders mean much less and our human bonds mean much more. I’m thrilled to present the winner film…Ahmed’s Song from France – Directed by Foued Mansour. Eric du Bellay will receive the award on behalf of y Foued Mansour”