Feting a first-timer
The De Laurentiis Award
bestowed on You Will Die at 20

The sixteenth edition of Giornate degli Autori wraps up on a festive note, with celebrations for Amjad Abu Alala, the Sudanese filmmaker who wrote and directed You Will Die at 20, which has won the Lion of the Future "Luigi De Laurentiis" Venice Award for a Debut Film.

The film is one of the four first films out of the eleven on Giornate's competitive lineup. This is the fifth time that a Giornate degli Autori debut has won this award, the others being: in 2005, 13 Tzameti by Géla Babluani (France); in 2006, Khadak by Peter Brosens and Jessica Woodworth (Belgium); in 2007, La zona by Rodrigo Plá (Spain, Mexico); and in 2010, Cogunluk (Majority) by Seren Yce (Turkey).

The award for the debut film by Amjad Abu Alala was assigned by the International Jury composed of its president Emir Kusturica, the filmmaker Antonietta De Lillo, the actress Hend Sabry, and the producer Michael J. Werner.

"Here's an award that was at once a wonderful surprise," says Giorgio Gosetti, and one we really hoped for, given our passionate commitment to this film from the very start. We don't set out to find debut filmmakers, but when their talent shines so dazzlingly, as in this case, we are proud and honored to welcome them with open arms."

"Giornate's mandate," writes its president Andrea Purgatori, "has always been that of accompanying the filmmakers' creativity and independence to wherever their voices ring out loud and clear. This was Sudan's first time at Giornate, and this award is a wonderful acknowledgment, for which we thank the jury for first films and the Venice Film Festival itself, which loyally backs Giornate's autonomy in its search for the finest films out there."