“Shok,” a Kosovo-based story of friendship and war, won three Aspen Shortsfest awards Sunday, as the six-day film festival drew to a close.
Prizes for “Shok” included Best Drama, a special Audience Recognition Award — given when voting by the audience is extremely close — and the Youth Jury Prize, which is awarded by a panel of local high school students.
British Writer-director Jamie Donoghue, accepting the Best Drama trophy in an awards dinner at Rustique Bistro, called Shortsfest “the best week of my life,” and said, “I can’t tell you what this is going to mean to the people back in Kosovo.”
The film is about two boys in Kosovo during the beginning of the 1990s ethnic cleansing there. It included a performance by actor-producer Eshref Durmishi, on whom one of the young Albanian characters was partly based, playing a soldier on the opposite side of the conflict. He and Donoghue shared the “Shok” backstory on stage after the film’s world premiere Friday evening at the Wheeler Opera House.
Aspen Shortsfest 2015 Award Winners:
BEST ANIMATION: ‘Dissonance’
BEST COMEDY: ‘Two Dosaas’
BEST DOCUMENTARY: ‘The Champion’
BEST DRAMA: ‘Shok’
BEST STUDENT FILM: ‘Mend and Make Do’
BEST SHORT SHORT: ‘The Girlfriend Experience’
SPECIAL JURY RECOGNITION: ‘De Smet,’ ‘Listen,’ ‘Lucy,’ ‘Rabbit,’ ‘Run Fast,’ ‘We Can’t Live Without Cosmos’
AUDIENCE AWARD: ‘How I Didn’t Become a Piano Player’
AUDIENCE SPECIAL RECOGNITION AWARD: ‘Shok’
THE ELLEN AWARD: ‘Boogaloo and Graham’
YOUTH JURY PRIZE: ‘Shok’