The Berlin Film Festival announced this afternoon that SHEPHERDS AND BUTCHERS, produced by Anant Singh and directed by Oliver Schmitz, has been awarded the third place Panorama Audience Award for Fiction Films, the first ever for a South African film, while ‘Junction 48’ from director, Udi Aloni and ‘Fukushima, mon Amour’ directed by Doris Dörrie won first and second place awards respectively. The films competed in a pool of 51 feature-length films from 33 countries in the Panorama Section of the Festival.
SHEPHERDS AND BUTCHERS played to full houses at all the Festival screenings where the filmmakers participated in robust Q&A sessions at the end of each screening.
Set in late 1980’s South Africa, SHEPHERDS AND BUTCHERS follows John Weber, a hotshot lawyer who faces his biggest test when he agrees to defend a prison guard who has killed seven men. What ensues is a compelling charge against the death penalty itself, in a case that changes history.
Commenting on the Award, Singh said, “We are overwhelmed by this acknowledgement for our homegrown South African film which completed with the best in the world. It is a testament to the amazing talent we assembled for the film, and this enabled us to successfully compete in the international arena.”
SHEPHERDS AND BUTCHERS, directed by multi-award winner Oliver Schmitz (‘Life, Above All’), stars talented newcomer, Garion Dowds as well as a number of well known South African actors including Deon Lotz, Robert Hobbs, Eduan van Jaarsveldt and Marcel van Heerden alongside Steve Coogan (‘Philomena’) and Andrea Riseborough (‘Birdman’, ‘Oblivion’).
SHEPHERDS AND BUTCHERS is an Anant Singh presentation of a Videovision Entertainment/Distant Horizon production in association with Times Media Films, WDR/ARTE and The Department of Trade and Industry South Africa. The film stars Steve Coogan, Andrea Riseborough and Garion Dowds. Music is composed by Paul Hepker, is edited by Megan Gill with Diana Cilliers as Costume Designer and Director of Photography Leah Striker. It is executive produced by Robert Naidoo, Sudhir Pragjee, Sanjeev Singh, Andrew Bonamour and Andrew Gill; co-producers Barbara Buhl, Andreas Schreitmueller and Jan Krüger. Produced by Anant Singh and Brian Cox, the film is based on the book ‘Shepherds and Butchers’ by Chris Marnewick with the screenplay by Brian Cox and is directed by Oliver Schmitz.
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