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‘Song Sparrow’ receives award at Emirates Short Film Festival

Iran-Denmark short animated film ‘Song Sparrow’ wins award at the 7th Emirates Short Film Festival (ESFF).

Iran-Denmark short animated film ‘Song Sparrow’ has taken home new award from the 7th Emirates Short Film Festival (ESFF).

Produced and written by Farzaneh Omidvarnia, ‘Song Sparrow’ was nominated in 5 categories of the Emirates festival where it succeeded to bring Ehsan Vaseghi the best editing award of the event.

Vaseghi has also worked as the film editor of 'Until Tomorrow' by Ali Asgari, which is to be screened at the Panorama section of the 72nd Berlin International Festival on Feb 10-20, 2022.

The young movie editor also attended the Generation section of the 68th Berlin International Film Festival with Iran and the Czech Republic coproduction ‘Hendi and Hormoz’ by Abbas Amini.

Ali Ahmadzadeh’s ‘Atomic Heart’ is another movie also edited by Vaseghi, which participated in the 65th edition of the Berlin International Film Festival.

‘Song Sparrow’ is about a group of refugees who try to reach themselves to a safe country in search for a better life. They pay a smuggler to convey them across the boarders in a fridge truck. However, the freezing temperature of the truck turns their hopes for a better future into a fierce struggle for survival.

This film, which uses puppet animation, is about real events which happened in Austria in August 2015 and in Ireland 2019.

The animated short flick has been already acclaimed internationally and won prizes in different festivals, including best short animation award at the 2019 Giffoni Film Festival in Italy, a special mention at the Cortile International Short Film Festival in Italy, best animated film award at Festival Internazionale del Cortometraggio in France as well as a special mention at MyArt Film Festival in Italy.

Among the rest of the accolades received by the flick are the best animation award at the 2021 Andaras Traveling Film Festival in Italy as well as the “Marzocco Award” of the 38th ValdarnoCinema Film Festival in Italy. 

The ValdarnoCinema Film Festival describes the animation as poetic and heartbreaking saying, “More incisive than an extreme documentary of social denunciation. A slow and detailed description/ exploration of the camera on dreams, desires, feelings, expectations of a group of illegal immigrants interpreted by poignant and tender puppets. Every blink of an eye, glance, and ripple of the tissues brings us incredibly closer to the human than the human itself.”

‘Song Sparrow’ was also picked among the qualified competitors for Oscar 2021 after winning the Best Short Animation Award at the 20th Lebu International Film Festival in Chile, which is an Oscar-qualifying festival.

Established in 2013, the ESFF is an annual short filmmaking competition event that brings together films from all over the world.

The selected films should “address some of the most current critical, social and environmental challenges and also generate reasons for hope and optimism.”

The 2021 ESFF took place on December 13-15 in Dubai, UAE with the awards ceremony held on 17 Dec.