Waad al-Kateab and Edward Watts’ For Sama was named the best British Independent Film at the 22nd British Independent Film Awards (BIFA), held Sunday (Dec. 1).
For Sama (pictured), the first documentary to earn the distinction, also secured wins for Best Director, Best Documentary and Best Editing at the ceremony.
From ITN Productions, the film tells the story of al-Kateab’s life through five years of war in Aleppo, Syria, as she navigates marriage and motherhood. It most recently took home the Audience Award at the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA).
BIFA’s Raindance Discovery Award went to Zara Balfour and Marcu Stephenson’s documentary Children of the Snow Land, about children born in the high Himalayas of Nepal who spend more than 10 years in schools away from their parents before making the long and dangerous trek back home.
Amanda Nevill, the outgoing CEO of the British Film Institute, was presented the Special Jury Prize. Nevill was praised for her “openness, deep personal involvement in her work and determination to involve filmmakers in all aspects of BFI’s strategies and activities.”