(Award given to the director)
DIRECTOR: Andrey Zvyagintsev
The latest drama from Andrey Zvyagintsev, the acclaimed director of The Return (Venice Film Festival Golden Lion winner and Golden Globe nominee). Kolia (Alexeï Serebriakov) lives in a small fishing town near the stunning Barents Sea in Northern Russia. He owns an auto-repair shop that stands right next to the house where he lives with his young wife Lilya (Elena Liadova) and his son Roma (Sergueï Pokhodaev) from a previous marriage. The town’s corrupt mayor Vadim Shelevyat (Roman Madianov) is determined to take away his business, his house, as well as his land.
First the Mayor tries buying off Kolia, but Kolia unflinchingly fights as hard as he can so as not to lose everything he owns including the beauty that has surrounded him from the day he was born. Facing resistance, the mayor starts being more aggressive...
Andrei Zvyagintsev was born in 1964 in Novosibirsk, Siberia. In 1990, Zvyagintsev graduated from the acting program of the Russian University of Theater Arts (GITIS), where he studied under the tutelage of Evgeny Lazarev. He went on to take part in independent theater productions and had a few bit parts in TV shows and movies. In 2000, he made his debut as a Director with three episodes for REN TV’s The Black Room.
In 2003, Zvyagintsev shot his first feature film, The Return, which became the cinema sensation of the year. A debut not only for the Director but for the majority of the crew as well. The Return was nominated for a Golden Globe after winning the Golden Lion and the Lion of the Future for Best Director’s Debut at the 60th Venice Film Festival in 2003, with the commendation: “a sublime film about love, loss and coming of age.”
His second film, The Banishment, was presented at the 2007 Cannes Film Festival, where the lead, Konstantin Lavronenko, became the first Russian actor ever to receive the Festival’s Award, the Palme d’Or for Best Actor.
The international premiere of Zvyagintsev’s third film, Elena, took place in 2011 at the 64th Cannes Film Festival, where it was awarded the Special Jury Prize in Un Certain Regard. The film also won the 2010 Sundance / NHK International Filmmakers Award.
His latest film, Leviathan, was selected in the Official Competition of the 67th Cannes Film Festival and won the Palme d’Or for Best Screenplay.