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HEARTSTONE wins European University Film Award – has now won 45 awards worldwide

Heartstone, the debut feature from writer/director Gudmundur Arnar Gudmundsson, has won the European University Film Award (EUFA). EUFA was launched in 2016 by the Prix Collégial du Cinéma Québécois (PCCQ), Filmfest Hamburg, and the European Film Academy (EFA) in association with the European Film Awards. Gudmundsson was at the award ceremony in Berlin to accept the award in person.

Of the 66 films recommended for nomination for this year’s European Film Awards, five were nominated for the European University Film Award. In addition to Heartstone, these five include Aki Kaurismäki’s The Other Side of Hope and Andrei Zvyagintsev’s Loveless, both of which are nominated for Best European Film and Best European Director.

All five of the nominated films were screened and discussed in 20 universities across 20 European countries, and then each institution voted on its favorite film. A jury of representatives from each university then came together in Hamburg to select the winner.

In their comments, the jury stated: “[Heartstone] offers an individual and unique perspective on the difficulty of experiencing and suppressing same-sex attraction in small, disconnected communities. As an up-and-coming talent, Gudmundur Arnar Gudmundsson delivers an immersive story visualized by overwhelming natural landscapes and beautiful performances. It stands out not only because it is a good film, but also because it explores relevant contemporary issues within today’s society.”

Last year, Ken Loach’s I, Daniel Blake won the first ever EUFA award.

A total of 45 awards

Heartstone’s strong festival run has seen the film honored all around the world. With six recent awards from the Cape Town International Film Market & Festival in South Africa, the Ljubljana International Film Festival in Slovenia, the Chéries-Chéris festival in Paris, Cinedays Festival of European Film in Skopje, Macedonia, and the Du Grain à Démoudre festival in France, the film has now won a total of 45 awards worldwide.