MARRAKESH: Austrian filmmaker Sudabeh Mortezai’s “Joy,” an unflinching look at migrant sex workers in Europe, won the top prize Saturday at the Marrakesh Film Festival in Morocco.
Italian actress Monica Bellucci presented the trophy for the film, which tells the story of a young Nigerian forced into prostitution in Vienna.
Marrakesh’s 17th annual festival was attended by top cinema stars like US director Martin Scorsese and actor Robert de Niro.
Tunisian Nidhal Saadi won Best Actor for his role in the film “Regarde moi” (Look at me), directed by Nejib Belkhadi.
And German Aenne Schwarz won Best Actress for her role in “Alles is gut” (All is good), directed by Eva Trobish. Tribute evenings honored the careers of visionary French filmmaker Agnes Varda and her co-director, French street artist JR, who teamed up to produce the road documentary “Faces Places.”
The festival also hailed the career of Moroccan filmmaker Jilali Ferhati, whose films were shown in a new “panorama of Moroccan cinema” sidebar.