Tunisian love story wins grand prize at Angoulême Francophone Film Festival

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Tunisian director Leyla Bouzid's "A Story of Love and Desire" won the best film and best actor awards on Sunday on the last day of the 14th Angoulême Francophone Film Festival.

The 14th Francophone Film Festival took place from 24 to 29 August in the southwestern city of Angoulême.

The film A Story of Love and Desire directed by Tunisian Leyla Bouzid won the Diamond Valois "Valois de diamant" prize. It narrates the sentimental education of Ahmed, a young Algerian man who grew up in the Paris suburbs and who falls in love with Farah, a young Tunisian woman at university in Paris.

The actor Sami Outalbali who plays Ahmed in the movie, won the "Valois" for best actor.

It was screened earlier this year as the closing film of the Critics' Week at the Cannes film festival.

Among the ten feature films in the running for a "Valois", the prize of the jury presided over by filmmaker Nicole Garcia was awarded to La Vraie Famille by French director Fabien Gorgeart, which also won a "Valois" for best actress for Mélanie Thierry, in the role of a foster mother torn apart by the departure of a little boy.

La nuit des rois (Night of the Kings) by Franco-Ivorian director Philippe Lacôte, which plunges into an overcrowded prison in Africa, was also awarded for its direction and music.

Another film which won a double award was Mon Légionnaire by French director Rachel Lang, which tells the story of couples serving in the Foreign Legion. It won a Valois for its script and a special mention for Lithuanian actress Ina Marija Bartaité. The film appeared as the closing film of the Directors' Fortnight in Cannes in July.

The online vote of the spectators went to Boîte noire by Yann Gozlan, an investigation into an air crash.

The French-speaking student jury, chaired by actress Anne Parillaud, awarded its prize to Petite nature (Softie) by Samuel Theis, the story of a boy struggling against his social condition, a film which was also screened at Cannes in the Critics' Week.

The Angoulême festival, which has in the past rewarded or launched future popular successes such as Intouchables (2011) or Guillaume et les garçons, à table! (2013), had crowned, in 2020, Ibrahim by Samir Guesmi.

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