The first time’s the charm for Antonio Méndez Esparza…
The Spanish filmmaker has picked up two awards at the 14th Mumbai Film Festival for his critically acclaimed feature debut Aquí y Allá.
The Mexican immigrant drama was named the best film by a first-time director in the international competition category. In earning the Golden Gateway of India award, the film was honored with and a cash prize of $ 100,000 collectively awarded to the producer, director & sales agent of the film.
In addition, Méndez Esparza picked up the Silver Gateway Award for best director for helming Aquí y Allá.
The film, which will be screened in the AFI Fest 2012’s Young Americans and New Auteurs sections at this year’s festival, recently earned Méndez Esparza a Gotham Independent Film Awards nomination for Breakthrough Director.
The film, which took top honors at the Critics’ Week sidebar at the Cannes Film Festival, centers on Pedro, a Mexican man who returns home to a small mountain village in Guerrero, after years of working in the US.
Spain’s Blancanieves, a black-and-white silent drama based on Snow White and directed by Pablo Berger, screened as the festival’s closing film.
The Mumbai Film Festival is organized by the Mumbai Academy of the Moving Image.