Saguenay international
short film festival

To the delight of festival-goers, partners, juries and filmmakers, the traditional awards ceremony of REGARD, The Saguenay International Short Film Festival, made its big comeback on Sunday morning. At the close of this 26th edition, the Festival and jury members awarded a total of 12 prizes and three mentions, and awarded a number of directors from around the world with more than $100,000 in cash and services. Their films, like all the others in the program, will be available from March 28 on the REGARD online platform.

Official Competition jury

The Official Competition jury – made up of Éric Piccoli (director, screenwriter), Martine Francke (actress), Larissa Corriveau (actress), Marco De Blois (artistic director of the Sommets du cinéma d'animation) and Mustapha Fahmi (writer, professor of English literature) – had the tough task of choosing the five winners from the 66 short films in the official competition.

First, the Grand Prize, offered by the Bureau du Cinéma de Saguenay, was awarded to Emma Branderhorst and the film Vlekkeloos (Netherlands).

The Canadian Grand Prix, presented by the Université du Québec à Chicoutimi and MTL Grandé, was awarded to Gabriel Allard Gagnon for the film Sikiitu (Quebec). A special mention was given to the short film Suzanne & Chantal directed by Rachel Graton (Quebec).


In addition, the Jury Prize, presented by Romeo & Fils, was awarded to Dania Bdeir and the film Warsha (Lebanon/France). The film Girl With a Thermal Gun directed by Rongfei Guo (China) also received a mention. 

In the Best Animation category, presented by Rodeo Fx, the winner is Ahmad Saleh and the film Night (Germany/Qatar/Palestine/Jordan).

Finally, the five members of the Official Competition jury picked directors Jack Weisman et Gabriela Osio Vanden (Ontario) and the film Nuisance Bear, for the Best Documentary award, presented by Spira, Stratéolab and Tënk Canada. A mention was also given in this category to the film Love, Dad directed by Diana Cam Van Nguyen (Czech Republic/Slovakia).


The FIPRESCI International Critics' Prize, presented by Outpost MTL and SLA location, recognizing the best Canadian short film in official competition, goes to Jack Weisman et Gabriela Osio Vanden (Ontario) and the film Nuisance Bear. This year, the jury was made up of Flavio Lira, Jason Gorber and Sebastiaan Khouw, all film critics.

The jury of Quebec critics (AQCC) – made up of professionals Justine Smith, Olivier Thibodeau and Christina Stojanova – has chosen to award the AQCC Quebec Critics' Prize, in collaboration with Lussier & Khouzam, to Soft Animals by filmmaker Renee Zhan (United Kingdom).

Finally, the public vote which took place from March 23 to 26 on the Festival website, gave the Audience Award, presented by SÉPAQ, to director Rachel Graton (Quebec) for the film Suzanne & Chantal.

Parallel Competition Jury

The Parallel Competition jury – made up of Karine Gonthier-Hyndman (actress), Annie St-Pierre (screenwriter, director), Ariane Roy-Poirier (programming director for Plein(s) Ecran(s)), Serge Bordeleau (documentary filmmaker) and Eva Williams (Sundance short film programmer) – presented the following three awards:

Rewarding an independent Quebec film made without financial assistance, the Tourner à Tout Prix! Best Film Award, presented by Unis TV, Spira and the Consulat général de France à Québec, this year goes to Do Butterflies Remember Being Caterpillars by the director Caraz.

The AMERICANA Prize, presented by Maria Maria restaurant, chooses an emerging filmmaker from the three Americas. This year the award goes to July Naters (Peru) and the film Pilona. 

As part of the 100% Regions program, the Philippe Belley Prize goes to director François Harvey (Saguenay) and the film Rencontre avec Robert Dole. The prize is presented by the Cégep de Chicoutimi, La Bande sonimage and PEAK visual and sound experience.

Finally, the Parallel Competition Audience Award, presented by Caisses Desjardins du Saguenay and Post-Moderne, was awarded to Gaëlle Graton (Québec) for the film L’autre rive.

Last but not least, the recipient of the Youth Competition Audience Award, presented by Hydro-Québec, will be announced on the Festival's social networks and website at the end of the school component in April, when all the registered classes have voted for their favourite film.

In the next two weeks, several screening locations across Quebec will broadcast the 26th edition’s winning films. A great opportunity for moviegoers who were unable to travel to Saguenay for the event!

REGARD online

Want to see the 165 short films in the program, including all the winners? They are all available on the REGARD online platform for only $40 until April 10.

Photo: Sophie Lavoie

Vous désirez être les premiers informés sur ce qui se passe à regard

Inscrivez-vous à notre infolettre