Sundance prize for Sophie Hyde

Sophie Hyde today won the Sundance Film Festival World Cinema Dramatic Directing Award for her gender-bending drama 52 Tuesdays.

The Adelaide-shot film competed with 11 other titles including Blind (Norway, Netherlands), the UK’s God Help the Girl and Lilting, The Disobedient (Serbia), Liar's Dice (India), To Kill a Man (Chile) and Wetlands (Germany).

In 52 Tuesdays, Tilda Cobham-Hervey plays 16-year-old Billie, who struggles with the revelation that her mother (Del Herbert-Jane) plans to change gender. Billie goes to live with her dad for a year while mother and daughter vow to meet every Tuesday for that year. Matthew Cormack wrote the screenplay from a story he devised with Hyde.

The film was shot on consecutive Tuesdays for 52 weeks. The producers are Closer Productions' Rebecca Summerton, Cormack, Hyde and Bryan Mason. It had its world premiere at the Adelaide Film Festival in October, funded by the SAFC's FilmLab and the AFF Investment Fund. New York-based Visit Films is handling international sales.

Ethiopian director Zeresenay Berhane Mehari’s Difret, a drama about a young female lawyer who risks her career and life by helping women and children, took the World Cinema Dramatic Audience Award. Angelina Jolie has joined that project as an executive producer.

Damien Chazelle’s Whiplash, the saga of a talented young drummer‘s quest for perfection at any cost and his relationship with his autocratic teacher, won the US Dramatic Audience Award. Sony bought the international rights including Australia.

The World Cinema Jury Prize, Dramatic, went to Alive Inside: A Story of Music & Memory, Michael Rossato-Bennett’s documentary about the healing power of music to reinvigorate the memories of US nursing home patients who suffer from dementia.