It has been a good year for women film directors. First Katherine Bigelow trumped her ex James Cameron at the Oscars with her gritty war drama The Hurt Locker. Now the artist-filmmaker Clio Barnard has won two of the five awards - Best British Newcomer and the Sutherland Award - given out at the BFI London Film Festival yesterday for her amazingly experimental film The Arbor based on the life of the troubled Bradford playwright, Andrea Dunbar.
Barnard interviewed family and friends of Andrea Dunbar - including her daughter Lorraine Dunbar, who is in rehab - and formed the film’s screenplay using the edited audio-clips of the interviews, which the actors lip-sync to.
Alexei Popogrebsky won the Best Film award for How I Ended This Summer, Janus Metz’s Armadillo won the Best Documentary award and Danny Boyle won the British Film Festival fellowship for his film 127 Hours, which closes the festival at a gala screening in the Leicester Square Odeon tonight.
Want to see The Arbor? Find out where's it's playing in London.
By Chetna Prakash