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The 57th Karlovy Vary Film Festival Comes To A Close, Find Out Who Won The Top Prizes!

The 57th edition of the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, known as Central Europe’s largest cinema party, kicked off on June 30 with a bang. The opening ceremony featured a lifetime achievement award for Oscar-winning actor Russell Crowe, a festival president’s award for Oscar-winning actress Alicia Vikander, a spectacular ice skating performance, and concerts by British electronic music band Morcheeba and Crowe’s band, Indoor Garden Party. It came to a close on July 8, 2023, and with it came the announcement of the festival’s winners.

Who won the Crystal Globe and the Special Jury Prize?

The Crystal Globe for Best Film is the top prize awarded at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival and is made from crystal and gold. The award comes with a $25,000 prize as well and this year it rightfully went to Blaga’s Lessons, which is a Bulgarian drama about a young woman who returns to her hometown to care for her elderly grandmother. The film was praised for its sensitive and nuanced portrayal of family relationships, as well as its beautiful cinematography.

The top Czech festival awarded its Special Jury Prize, along with a $15,000 check, to Behrooz Karamizade’s German-Iranian co-production Empty Nets. The audience award went to Vincent Perez’s French film The Edge of the Blade, and a Special Jury Mention was given to Cyril Aris’ German-Lebanese entry Dancing on the Edge of a Volcano.

Source: Official poster for the 57th KVIFF

What are some other notable winners?

Aside from the Crystal Globe and the Special Jury Prizes. Babak Jalali was awarded the Best Director prize for his American film Fremont, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year. Herbert Nordrum won the Best Actor prize for his performance in the Swedish/Norwegian/French co-production The Hypnosis.


The second edition of the Proxima competition at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, which is focused on bold works by young filmmakers and renowned auteurs alike, has also announced its award winners. The Grand Prix, which comes with a $15,000 reward, was awarded to the South Korean film Birth by Yoo Ji-young. The Indian/Nepalese co-production Guras by Saurav Rai won a special jury prize of $10,000, and a special jury mention was given to the Czech/Slovak film Brutal Heat by Albert Hospodářský.