TOKYO – Iranian Director Reza Jamali won the Spirit of Asia Award by the Japan Foundation Asia Center for his film "Old Men Never Die" during the 32nd Tokyo International Film Festival (TIFF) Award Ceremony on November 5.

The award is bestowed on a promising director in the TIFF Asian Future section, chosen for its chances at international success beyond cultural and national borders.

"I'm happy to have received this award. I've finished shooting my second film, and to be given the wonderful opportunity to be acknowledged in this way has given me faith in my own (style) to go forward in the future," Jamali said.

Iranian Director Reza Jamali

The Best Asian Future Film Award went to "Summer Knight," directed by You Xing, the Best Screenplay Award to Shin Adachi for his film "A Beloved Wife," and the Best Artistic Contribution to Wang Rui's Chinese feature, "Chaogtu with Sarula."

Navid Mohammadzadeh from “Just 6.5” bagged the Best Actor Award while Nadia Tereszkiewicz, from "Only the Animals" took the Best Actress Award.

Saeed Roustaee won the Best Director Award for "Just 6.5," while the Special Jury Prize went to "Atlantis" and the festival's most prestigious award, the Tokyo Grand Prix, was given to Director Frelle Petersen for Danish film "Uncle."

All winners of 32nd TIFF

The Japan Foundation Asia Center and TIFF are now on their sixth year of collaboration, an endeavor that aims to deepen mutual understanding within Asia by showcasing Asian films in Japan and by bringing Asian talent to the world through TIFF.

The Japan Foundation Asia Center's CROSSCUT ASIA series showcases Asian films focused on particular countries, directors, or themes. This year's CROSSCUT ASIA showcased films featuring genre films ranging from thrillers to romantic horrors, reflecting regional characteristics such as internationally acclaimed director Lav Diaz's first-ever sci-fi thriller "The Halt."

Last October 29, taking the stage for a talk titled "The Discreet Charm of Girl's Horror Talk," three of Asia's leading female directors, Antoinette Jadaone ("Six Degrees of Separation from Lilia Cuntapay"), Mattie Do ("The Long Walk"), and Sigrid Andrea P. Bernardo ("Untrue"), whose works were all screened in CROSSCUT ASIA #06, discussed the horror films of Southeast Asia.

"The genre looks male-dominated, but people making genre films help each other, come out for you, they're there for you. It looks unwelcoming, but we need the female perspective in drama and women would find it a supportive world,” Do said.

The 32nd TIFF unspooled from October 28 to November 5, 2019. (Asianet)