Maman(s) and Edmond nab prizes at 2016 Sundance Film Festival

Maman(s) has won the Short Film Jury Award for International Fiction at this year’s Sundance Film Festival. The French film directed by Maïmouna Doucouré is about a young girl whose father comes home and introduces her to a woman he describes as his second wife. The personal and moving drama has already made its presence felt on the circuit – winning awards at the likes of Leuven – and it’s win at Sundance will undoubtedly give the film much more visibility in the months to come.

British film Edmond gained the Short Film Jury Award for Animation which caps off a successful year for the film including a nomination for the 2016 BAFTA Awards. Czech director Ondřej Hudeček won a Short Film Special Jury Award for Best Direction for his film Peacock. Jim Cummings US film Thunder Road won the Grand Jury Prize

This 2016 Short Film jurors were star and co-creator of Comedy Central’s Key & Peele, Keegan-Michael Key; development executive at Amazon Studios, Gina Kwon; and chief film critic for MTV, Amy Nicholson.

The full awards this year were:

The Short Film Grand Jury Prize was awarded to: Thunder Road / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Jim Cummings) — Officer Arnaud loved his mom.

The Short Film Jury Award: U.S. Fiction was presented to: The Procedure / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Calvin Lee Reeder) — A man is captured and forced to endure a strange experiment.

The Short Film Jury Award: International Fiction was presented to: Maman(s) / France (Director and screenwriter: Maïmouna Doucouré ) — Life is disrupted for eight-year-old Aida when her father returns with a young Senegalese woman, Rama, whom he introduces as his second wife. Sensitive to her mother's distress, Aida decides to get rid of the new visitor.

The Short Film Jury Award: Non-fiction was presented to: Bacon & God's Wrath / Canada (Director: Sol Friedman) — A 90-year-old Jewish woman reflects on her life experiences as she prepares to try bacon for the first time.

The Short Film Jury Award: Animation was presented to: Edmond / United Kingdom (Director and screenwriter: Nina Gantz) — Edmond's impulse to love and be close to others is strong—maybe too strong. As he stands by a lake contemplating his options, he reflects on his defining moments in search of the origin of his desires.

A Short Film Special Jury Award for Outstanding Performance was presented to: Grace Glowicki for her performance in Her Friend Adam.

A Short Film Special Jury Award for Best Direction was presented to: Peacock / Czech Republic (Director: Ondřej Hudeček, Screenwriters: Jan Smutny, Ondřej Hudeček) — A twisted queer romance set in picturesque 19th-century Bohemia tells the true story of the birth of one of the nation's most influential writers, with suspense, laughter, violence, hope, nudity, sex, and a happy ending—mostly a happy ending

27 January 2016, by Laurence Boyce