Tallinn Black Nights – The winners of the 25th edition

29 November, 2021

The Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival took place between the 12th and 18th of November, and its program comprised 179 feature-length films and 244 short films.

“We are delighted to welcome the works of so many fantastic filmmakers to PÖFF this year. Not everything is back to normal, but at least this new normal contains many wonderful films. We’re eternally grateful to all of the filmmakers whose movies we have considered. This year’s line-up truly represents the wide diversity and real quality that auteur cinema offers, with fantastic films from around the world, old masters and first-timers alike,” commented Festival Director Tiina Lokk on the 2021 edition.

This year’s Official Competition Jury was presided by Mike Downey, film producer and Chairman of the European Film Academy, and consisted of director and writer Francis Annan, director Nisan Dağ, set and costume designer Eugen Tamberg, and Piret Tibbo-Hudgins, Head of Production of the Estonian Film Institute.

The festival program included several Romanian titles, such as Miracle (dir. Bogdan George Apetri), Snowing Darkness (dir. Gabriel de Achim), the Turkey-Romania co-production Brother’s Keeper (dir. Ferit Karahan), as well as two short films, by Radu Jude and Alexandru Mironescu, respectively.

Here are the winners of the 25th edition of the Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival:

Grand Prix: Dear Thomas (dir. Andreas Kleinert, produced by Till Derenbach and Michael Souvignier)

Best Director Award: Wojciech Smarzowski (The Wedding Day)

Best Actor Award: Albrecht Schuch (Dear Thomas)

Best Actress Award: Sofia Krugova (No Looking Back)

Best Cinematography Award: Emre Tanyıldız (The List of Those Who Love Me)

Best Screenplay Award: Wojciech Smarzowski (The Wedding Day)

Best Production Design Award: Perpetuity (dir. György Pálfi)

Best Original Score Award: The Wait (composed by Esa-Pekka Salonen)

Best First Feature Award: Francesco Sossai (Other Cannibals)

First Features Jury Special Prize: Nicolás Postiglione (Immersion)

First Features Jury Special Prize: Cécile Ducrocq (Her Way)

FIPRESCI Award: Other People (dir. Aleksandra Terpińska)

Ecumenical Award: Mukagali (dir. Bolat Kalymbetov)

Best Baltic Film Award: Runner (dir. Andrius Blaževičius)

Rebels with a Cause Award: The Moths (dir. Piotr Stasik)

Rebels with their Shorts Award: They Were To Cross The River (dir. Faeze Karimpour)

PÖFF SHORTS EFA Award: Steakhouse (dir. Spela Cadez)

Just Film Grand Prix Award: Playground (dir. Laura Wandel)

Just Film ECFA Award: My Dad is a Sausage (dir. Anouk Fortunier)

DDA Spotlight: Respect (dir. Liesl Tommy) and Great Freedom (dir. Sebastian Meise)

Audience Favorite: Whispers of War (dir. Florian Hoffmann)

Lifetime Achievement Award: Carlos Saura



Photographer and editor, she co-founded Dissolved Magazine. For Films in Frame she brings the news from the film world, in the Monday News column. She likes stories, Monty Python and going to the seaside.