Platinum Award to Cristi Puiu

The Sofia International Film Festival and FIPRESCI inform

Cristi PUIU received FIPRESCI 96 Platinum Award
at the 25th Sofia International Film Festival
The Romanian director was recognized with the special award by the International Federation of Film Critics

The works of famous writer and director Cristi Puiu is one of the reasons the world of cinema turned it’s eyes to Romania – he is one of the founders of the „Romanian New Wave“. Cristi Puiu was born in Bucharest in 1967. He studied Fine Arts at the École Supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Geneva. After his return to Romania, he continues to paint, while filming his first feature film – Stuff and Dough (2001), followed by Cigarettes and Coffee, awarded with „Golden Bear“ for a short film at the Berlinale in 2004.

Presented as a project at Sofia Meetings in 2004, The Death of Mr. Lazarescu (2005) had it’s world premiere in Cannes and received the main prize in the „Un Certain Regard“ competition, as well as six awards at the Transilvania International Film Festival, awards in Chicago, Copenhagen and tens of other recognitions. This was the work that became an emblem of the New Romanian Cinema.

Bulgarian audiences know Cristi Puiu from his films Stuff and Dough, The Death of Mr Lazarescu, Aurora (2010) and Sieranevada (2016), presented with great success at previous editions of the Sofia International Film Festival.  The Director was president of the International Jury at the 21st SIFF in 2017. His latest film, Manor House (2020), was shown at the 25th Sofia International Film Festival.

The story recreates philosofical discourses from the beggining of the 20th century between five aristocrats during the Christmas Holidays in a remote manor house. The film is based on the famous utopian philosophical text by the russian thinker Vladimir Soloviov „War, Progress, and the End of History: Three Conversations, Including a Short Tale of the Antichrist“, written just before his death in 1900.

Cinema is an instrument for investigating the real, for investigating life. OK, so there’s another question that arises, which is: why fiction films? It’s because fictions come from our minds. And so they’re like evidence – evidence of a certain way of thinking about the world. The camera isn’t moving accidentally; there’s an intention. So cinema can be a kind of anthropological device for you to look at the world outside yourself and the world inside yourself, inside your head, which fiction films allow you to do.“ – says Cristi Puiu.

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For six years in a row at the Sofia Film Festival we have the honour and pleasure of presenting the special FIPRESCI Platinum 90 Award, provided by the International Federation of Film Critics. In pre-pandemic times it has been given in person by Klaus Eder, General Secretary of the Federation, and in Sofia it has been awarded to Béla Tarr, Goran Paskaljevic Ildikó Enyedi, Bille August, and Agnieszka Holland. In March 2021 the award was sent to Terry Gilliam and the legendary director held a special Masterclass, broadcasted directly in the hall of Cinema House – Sofia, on the official FIPRESCI website and in Sofia International Film Festival’s social media channels.

This September we welcomed in Sofia Cristi Puiu (on September 18 and 19, 2021) – he received the award in person and his Masterclass was held in the Cinema House – Sofia.

For more information:
Svetlana Damianova
press office
Sofia International Film Festival