Maltese feature film Luzzu continues to wow international viewers winning the grand prize in the International Feature Competition at Skip City International D-Cinema Festival in Japan. 

The 18th edition of the Japenese International festival received 1,084 submissions from 104 counties and regions.

The festival took place online between September 25 and Sunday, when the Grand Prize was announced. 

Established in 2004, Skip City International D-Cinema Festival focuses on both international and Japanese films. The International Competition accepts submissions from all over the world. 

A list of the international winners in Skip City International D-Cinema Festival. Photo: Screenshot of Skip websiteA list of the international winners in Skip City International D-Cinema Festival. Photo: Screenshot of Skip website

After preliminary judges nominated the first round of nominees, the official jury judged the films.

Luzzu is Alex Camilleri’s feature-length directorial debut, a Maltese language film that has netted international praise and scooped awards at festivals around the world. 

It tells the story of a fisherman who risks everything to enter Malta's black-market fishing industry and has already wowed judges at this year's Sundance Film Festival, which is where the first screening took place.

Lead actor Jesmark Scicluna, a fisherman from Siġġiewi, also bagged the Special Jury Award for his performance at the Sundance Film Festival.

Foreign Affairs Minister Evarist Bartolo congratulated the film crew for their achievements. 

Luzzu also made the longlist for best feature film at this year's European Film Awards. 

The members of the European Film Academy vote for the nominations in the main categories which will be announced on November 9 during the Seville European Film Festival in Spain.

The overall winner will then be announced during the 34th European Film Awards in Berlin on December 11. 

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