BFI London Film Festival Unveils Competition Juries

The London Film Festival has revealed its jury line-up for this year’s awards.

The Official Competition jury is led by “Power of the Dog” and “Cold War” producer Tanya Seghatchian (pictured), while the First Feature Competition (Sutherland Award) jury will be headed up by director and actor Nana Mensah whose directorial debut “Queen of Glory” won the Best New Narrative Director prize at the 2021 Tribeca Film Festival.

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Elsewhere, Italian filmmaker Roberto Minervini will lead the jury selecting the winner of the Grierson Award for Best Documentary after winning the award in 2018 for his film “What You Gonna Do When the World’s On Fire.”

Finally, the Immersive Art and XR Competition will be led by photographer Misan Harriman, while producer and director Joy Gharoro-Akpojotor will lead the jury selecting the best short film.

See below for the full jury lists:

Official Competition

Seghatchian is joined this year by: actor Gwendoline Christie (“Game of Thrones”), filmmaker and playwright Kemp Powers (“One Night in Miami”), filmmaker Chaitanya Tamhane (“The Disciple”) and journalist Charles Gant.

The Best Film Award recognizes inspiring, inventive and distinctive filmmaking. The films in the running include:

“Argentina, 1985” (Argentina, dir-scr. Santiago Mitre)
“Brother” (Canada, dir-scr. Clement Virgo)
“Corsage” (Austria – Luxembourg – Germany – France, dir-scr. Marie Kreutzer)
“The Damned Don’t Cry” (France – Belgium – Morocco, dir-scr. Fyzal Boulifa)
“Enys Men” (UK, dir-scr. Mark Jenkin)
“Godland” (Denmark – Iceland – France – Sweden, dir-scr. Hlynur Pálmason)
“Nezouh” (UK – Syria – France, dir-scr. Soudade Kaadan)
“Saint Omer” (France, dir. Alice Diop)

First Feature Competition

Alongside Mensah will be: comedian and actor Asim Chaudhry (“People Just Do Nothing”), Sight & Sound managing editor Isabel Stevens and Edinburgh International Film Festival creative director Kristy Matheson.

The Sutherland Award recognizes the most original and imaginative directorial debut.

This year’s nominated directors are:
“1976” (dir. Manuella Martelli)
“Blue Jean” (dir-scr. Georgia Oakley)
“Jeong-Sun” (dir-scr. Jieong Ji-hye)
“Joyland” (dir. Saim Sadiq)
“Medusa Deluxe” (dir-scr. Thomas Hardiman)
“Our Lady of the Chinese Shop” (dir-scr. Ery Claver)
“Robe of Gems” (dir-scr. Natalia López Gallardo)
“Rodeo” (dir. Lola Quivoron)

Documentary Competition

Joining Minervini on the jury this year is: producer and former director of the Sundance Film Festival Tabitha Jackson, and writer and artist Morgan M Page (“Framing Agnes”).

The Grierson Award recognizes feature-length documentaries with integrity, originality and social or cultural significance. The selected documentaries this year are:

“All That Breathes” (dir. Shaunak Sen)
“All The Beauty and the Bloodshed” (dir. Laura Poitras)
“Casa Susanna” (dir. Sébastien Lifshitz)
“The Future Tense” (dir-scr. Christine Molloy, Joe Lawlor)
“Kanaval: A People’s History of Haiti in Six Chapters” (dir. Leah Gordon, Eddie Hutton Mills)
“Lynch/Oz” (dir-scr. Alexandre O. Phillipe)
“Name Me Lawand” (dir-scr. Edward Lovelace)
“What About China?” (dir-scr. Trinh Minh-ha)

Immersive Art and XR Competition

Harriman will be joined by: London Area Director at Arts Council England Tonya Nelson and Olivier Delpoux, head of digital and audiovisual creation at the Institut Francais.

The Immersive Art and XR Award recognizes the most innovative work from artists and creators who are boldly exploring the intersection of art, film and expanded reality. The selected works are:

“All Unsaved Progress Will Be Lost” (lead artist: Mélanie Courtinat)
“Apparatus Ludens” (lead artists: Untold Garden)
“As Mine Exactly” (lead artist: Charlie Shackleton)
“Black Movement Library – Movement Portrait” (lead artist: Lajuné Mcmillian)
“The Choice” (lead artist: Joanne Popinska)
“Digital Motions” (lead artists: Helge Letonja, Marcel Kampapke, Bjoern Lengers, Anke Euler)
“Framerate: Pulse of the Earth” (lead artists: Matthew Shaw, William Trossell, Scanlab
“In Pursuit of Repetitive Beats” (lead artist: Darren Emerson)
“The Infinite Library” (lead artists: Mika Johnson (Daisy With Rider Productions)
“Intravene” (lead artists: Darkfield, Crackdown, Brenda Longfellow)
“Last Time I Saw Snow” (lead artists: Isobel Mascarenhas-Whitman, Alex Tennyson)
“Noah’s Raft” (lead artists: Joel Kachi Benson & Tal Michael Haring)
“Line of Contact” (lead artist: Dani Ploeger)
“Missing Pictures: Catherine Hardwickes” (lead artists: Catherine Hardwicke, Clément
“Monoliths” (lead artists: Lucy Hammond, Hannah Davies, Asma Elbadawi, Carmen Marcus)
“On the Morning You Wake (To the End of the World)” (lead artists: Jamaica
Heolimeleikalani Osorio, Mike Brett, Steve Jamison, Arnaud Colinart, Pierre Zandrowicz)
“Pan + Tilt” (lead artists: Ruth Gibson, Bruno Martelli)
“Planet City” (lead artist: Liam Young in Collaboration with Well Played Studios)
“Walzer” (lead artists: Frieda Gustavs, Leo Erken)

Short Film Competition

Joining Gharoro-Akpojotor will be: film producer Sorcha Bacon, journalist Caspar Salmon and Maddy Probst, managing producer at Bristol Watershed.

The Short Film Award recognizes short form works that speak with a unique cinematic voice, demonstrating a confident handling of theme and content. The nominated films this year are:

“An Avocado Pit” (dir. Ary Zara)
“Checoslovaquia” (dir. Dennis Perinango)
“Drop Out” (dir. Ade Femzo)
“I Have No Legs, And I Must Run” (dir. Yue Li)
“It’s Raining Frogs Outside” (dir. Maria Estela Paiso)
“The Ritual to Beauty” (dir. Maria Marrone)
“Rosemary A.D. (After Dad)” (dir. Ethan Barrett)
“A Sod State” (dir. Eoghan Ryan)
“Transparent” (dir. Siobhan Davies

The festival will this year also introduce an audience award for best short film, in addition to feature film. The awards will be held virtually on Oct. 16 on the BFI YouTube channel.

The London Film Festival runs from Oct. 5-16.

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