Controversial thriller Snowtown has had success at the Marrakech International Film Festival, taking away the Jury Prize and Best Actor award.

Held over the weekend, the South Australian flick – about Australia’s worst serial killer, John Bunting, who befriends 16-year-old Jamie Vlassakis – won the prestigious Jury Prize which is led by The Help actress Jessica Chastain.

Daniel Henshall also won the Best Actor gong for his scary portrayal of Bunting at the 11th annual Morocco festival. Before the Justin Kurzel-gripping thriller, Henshall was known for TV work such as playing Adam 'Addo' O'Donnell in Southern Star's Out of the Blue. Next year he stars in Rob Sitch comedy Any Questions for Ben? and rom-com Not Suitable For Children.

The $2.5 million Snowtown, which was awarded the President of the Jury Special Award Grand Prix at the Cannes International Film Festival, had a strong opening when it was released in Australia by Madman in May, posting $169,072 from just 16 screens. In Australia it ended up taking $1.1 million and is the seventh highest-grossing local film this year behind such films as Red Dog and Oranges and Sunshine. It’s currently receiving positive reviews in Europe.

Most recently it was nominated in 10 categories at the inaugural Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts (AACTA) Awards, including nods for Best Actor and Best Cinematography. The film won for Best Editing (Veronika Jenet ASE) at last month’s Jameson IF Awards Sydney, but missed out in four other categories including Best Direction (Kurzel) and Best Cinematography (Adam Arkapaw).

The trailer can be seen here.

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