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Wednesday, 24 March 2021

Film Festival

Film Festival Prize Winners Announced

The prizes for the 2021 Hebden Bridge Film Festival, which all took place online at the weekend (19-21 March 2021), have been announced.

Decorated Yak from Hebden Royd School

The Best Narrative Feature and the Audience Award winner was Luna: A Yak in the Classroom. The film, by Pawo Choyning Dorji, tells the story of a young teacher in modern Bhutan. He discovers that home is where the heart is when he is sent to the most remote school in the world, a glacial Himalayan village called Lunana. 


The first prize winner of the Short Film Competition was The Daring Young Girl On The Flying Trapeze. The film, by Nina Ross, tells the story of Nancy Willis, diagnosed with muscular dystrophy and a prognosis not to live beyond her twenties, the now 65-year-old artist invites us into her world.

The Short Film Competition second prize, presented by Fox and Goose, was Mind Yersel by Bonnie MacRae. This moving film is a call for change in Dundee, the suicide capital of Scotland.

2021 Festival Highlights

  • As part of the build up to the 2021 festival, school pupils in Hebden Bridge and surrounding areas were invited to decorate some cardboard yaks and to learn more about the culture showcased in Luna: A Yak in the Classroom. The director, Pawo Choyning Dorji was deeply touched and sent the children a special video message. 
  • A special poem was written by Clare Shaw and read by Maxine Peake – The Picture House. See Maxine Peake reads poem celebrating The Picture House
  • Hollywood director and producer Paul Feig took part in a Q&A on Harami, which received its UK Premiere as part of the festival.
  • Across the weekend 570 people streamed almost 2,750 hours of content

Hebden Bridge Film Festival director Louise Wadley said, “I am delighted that Lunana: A Yak in The Classroom has won Best Film in the Narrative Feature Competition and the Audience Award. The judges said that they were impressed by the delicacy and skill of the story telling in this beautiful film that has so powerfully affected our audience.”

Celebrating the short film competition, Wadley added, “The diversity of the short films received for the competition was wonderful. There were such important and wide-ranging stories from across the globe. Prize winners The Daring Young Girl On The Flying Trapeze and Mind Yersel are so different in many ways yet connected by the theme of celebrating life.”

“This year’s online version of the film festival was an overwhelming success with people embracing the theme of together / apart and really connecting and communicating with their friends and family through the films. Attendance was even higher than our previous in person event.”