Jordanian filmmaker Raed Andoni’s Ghost Hunting (Istiyad Ashbah) has picked up the top documentary prize at the 67th annual Berlin International Film Festival.
The film, which held its world premiere in Germany, reconstructs the experiences of a group of former inmates from Israeli detention centers who re-enact their interrogations, discuss details about the prison and express the humiliation they experienced during their imprisonment.
A three-member jury selected Ghost Hunting as the winner of Berlinale’s newly-founded Glashütte Original Documentary Award, which also boasts a €50,000 (US$53,000) cash prize. The prize money will be split between Andoni and the film’s producer Palmyre Badinier.
This year’s three-member jury consisted of Daniela Michel, Mexican film critic and founding director of the Morelia International Film Festival; Laura Poitras, co-creator of visual journalism project Field of Vision; and Swiss-Iraqi documentary filmmaker Samir.
Documentary entries from the current programs of the Competition, Panorama, Forum, Generation, Berlinale Special and Perspektive Deutsches Kino sections, as well as the Culinary Cinema special series, were eligible for the Glashütte Original Documentary Award.
Elsewhere, I Am Not Your Negro, Raoul Peck’s film essay about author and social critic James Baldwin, picked up the Panorama Dokumente Audience Award. In 2017 a total of 29,000 votes were cast and counted.
Catherine Gund and Daresha Kyi’s Chavela, an homage to the Mexican singer Chavela Vargas, claimed second place in the Panorama Dokumente Audience Award while Andoni’s Ghost Hunting came in third.
The Berlin International Film Festival kicked off on Feb. 9 and wrapped up on Saturday (Feb. 19). Read up on all the winners here.