IBELIN wins the Audience Award at Tromsø International Film Festival 2024

On Monday afternoon, the counting was completed, and TIFF has announced that the winner of this year's audience award is the heart-wrenching documentary IBELIN by Benjamin Ree.

Publisert 22.01.2024 — TIFF

IBELIN, which follows the astonishing story of the deceased gamer Mats Steen, had its Norwegian premiere during the Tromsø International Film Festival just a day after its world premiere at the prestigious international film festival, Sundance.

- We are very happy that we got to have the Norwegian premiere of IBELIN. On several occasions, I have received feedback from the audience deeply moved after watching it. The film is exciting and innovative in form, showing, among other things, the positive aspects technology and gaming can have on a person's life, says Festival and Program Director Lisa Hoen.

Festivalsjef Lisa Hoen og Vibeke Skistad under Norgespremieren på IBELIN. Foto: Simen Salomonsen Hjelle

The powerful documentary has been well-received by critics and now by the audience as it takes home this year's Audience Award after being seen by 1200 spectators, receiving a great applause and teary eyes during TIFF. Director Benjamin Ree was unable to physically attend the premiere in Norway, but participated via Zoom from Sundance in the USA.

Regissør Benjamin Ree på skjermen under Norgespremieren av IBELIN. Foto: Simen Salomonsen Hjelle

- What fantastic news to receive! Being awarded the Audience Award means a lot to everyone involved in the film. Thank you so much to the audience who voted for us. We were extremely nervous about the first screenings of the film, which makes this award even more meaningful. TIFF was the first film festival I attended as an 18-year-old, and I have been back to the festival several times since then. TIFF holds a special place in my heart, so it's extra special that Ibelin's first award comes from the world's best film festival. Thank you all so much! Says director Benjamin Ree.

The Audience Award is one of the festival's most prestigious prizes.

- It shows what resonates best with the festival's own audience. The prize often goes to a feel-good film, but this time it has gone to a film in a completely different genre. I believe the film's themes resonate with many, whether they game themselves or have friends or family connected to the gaming community. When it all comes down to it, it's a strong, beautiful, and honest story about a young boy's struggle to find his place in the world, says Hoen.

The film will be screening in Norwegian Cinemas from the 3rd of March 2024.

Les også:

Thank you!