‘Son of Saul’ scoops Best Foreign Film at Spirit Awards

Director Laszlo Nemes collects trophy for Hungarian Holocaust movie about inmate forced to cremate fellow prisoners

Stuart Winer is a breaking news editor at The Times of Israel.

“Son of Saul,” a Hungarian film about the Holocaust, picked up the Best Foreign Film Award at the 31st Film Independent Spirit Awards on Saturday.

The movie, which has already garnered several international awards and is expected to take home an Oscar Sunday, tells the story of a Jewish concentration camp inmate forced to help cremate his fellow prisoners.

Producer Gabor Rajna, director Laszlo Nemes, actor Geza Rohrig, and cinematographer Matyas Erdely were on hand to collect the trophy during the ceremony on a Santa Monica beach.

“It means a lot to us that the language of film — the grammar of film — is not something that stopped evolving, and we want to explore,” Nemes said during his acceptance speech. “I think it’s an encouragement.”

The film — which won the Golden Globe for best foreign film last month, won the Grand Prix at the Cannes Film Festival last year and is favored to win the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film — was partially funded by the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany, which compensates Holocaust survivors and typically funds more traditionally educational films.

JTA contributed to this report.

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