Vava Moh by director Smail Yazid won the prestigious Olivier d'Or award in the fiction feature film category. In the documentary category, the award went to La langue de Zahra by Fatima Sissani. Encre et le monde by Sofiane Bellali won the best short film award. In the young talent category, the prize for the best film went to director Sonia Ahnou for her film Uzzu.
Vava Moh highlights Kabyle traditions and the importance of respect for birth rights in social relations.
In her documentary La langue de Zahra, Fatima Sissani examines the lives of Algerian expatriates, highlighting their loneliness, their suffering in silence, and feelings of nostalgia. The pain they feel is expressed through metaphors, proverbs, and poetry.
The festival attracted over 300 participants, including about 100 Algerian and foreign filmmakers from the Maghreb, the Canary Islands, Peru, France, Spain, and Canada. Libya was the guest of honour.
Culture Minister Khalida Messaoudi said in a message to the participants during the opening ceremony that the presence of delegations from Morocco, Tunisia, Mauritania and Libya would build bridges to strengthen a cultural and film-loving Maghreb.
Some 50 films, of which 25 were entered for the Olivier d'Or, were screened in packed auditoriums in the provincial capital and then in the towns of Azazga, Larbaa Nath Irathen, Tizi-Rached, Ain El Hammam, and Draa El Mizan.
In addition to film screenings, the festival also featured conferences on film-related topics such as dubbing, sound techniques, and Berber cinema in the Maghreb.
The festival's organiser and the Director of Culture in Tizi-Ouzou, Assad El Hachemi, said that he regarded the event as "a forum for hopes and dreams".
During a roundtable discussion, representatives of the Maghreb said they wanted to create a Berber Film Festival Federation. This proposal was put forward by Rachid Moutchou, the artistic director of the Isni Ourgh Festival in Morocco.
“The idea is not a new one for Algeria, but we think that putting it into effect will require, for a start, the creation and development of a partnership between the countries of the Maghreb to promote Berber cinema," said El Hachemi.