FICA 2023: discover the prizes awarded by the Inalco jury

30 March 2023
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The 29th Festival International des Cinémas d'Asie de Vesoul came to a close on Tuesday March 7. The Cyclo d'Or, FICA's highest award, went to "The Sales Girl" by Mongolian director Sengedorj Janchivdorj. The Inalco jury was on hand to present its prize and its favorite of the nine films in the fiction competition.
Remise du prix Inalco au réalisateur indien Praveen Morchhale
Remise du prix Inalco au réalisateur indien Praveen Morchhale © Jean-François Maillot / FICA‎
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This year once again, Inalco enthusiastically joined forces with the FICA to share our knowledge and understanding of the world's plurality.
The Inalco jury, made up of a teacher, two students and a member of the administrative staff, awarded the prize and the Inalco Coup de Coeur on Tuesday March 7 at the festival's closing ceremony.

Inalco Prize

Our jury chose to award the Inalco Prize to Behind Veils (Sir Madam Sarpanch) by Indian director Praveen Morchhale for this critical satire of contemporary India, full of humor and finesse. The director tackles serious themes with lightness, portraying the absurdity and dysfunction of family, administrative, political and social institutions.

This film will be screened in the Inalco auditorium during the 2023-2024 cultural season.

Our film Behind Veils ( hindi title - Sir Madam Sarpanch) wins @Inalco jury award at International Film Festival of Asian Cinema Vesoul, France. Satirical film win awards. @FICAVesoul
- Praveen Morchhale (@P_Morchhale) March 8, 2023

The Indo-Asian News Service (IANS) news agency interviewed Praveen Morchhale, who said, "It's very rare for an Indian satirical film to win a jury prize at a renowned international festival in Europe. It was an extraordinary experience to see people laughing throughout the film at the absurdity of the characters, the situations and their reactions to subtle and serious issues in contemporary India. In general, satirical films are rarely invited to festivals around the world. I didn't expect the jury to like it and reward it, but they did."
(source: Praveen Morchhale's 'Sir Madam Sarpanch' wins INALCO Jury Award at 29th VIFFAC, March 9, 2023)


When Ana, an American-raised Indian, returns to her ancestral town in central India to fulfill her late father's wish to set up a library there, her laudable intentions trigger a storm in the village. Her initiative reveals in an absurd and satirical way how books can be considered dangerous by a dominant system in India. Ana, thinking she can get out of this impasse, runs for village council. There she discovers further absurdities of India's political and social systems.

Inalco Coup de Coeur (special mention)

The Inalco jury's Coup de Coeur was awarded to A Letter from Kyoto (교토에서 온 편지) by Korean director Kim Min-ju. Jury members were enthusiastic about the director's treatment of memory and Japanese-Korean identity.

A Letter from Kyoto, Kim Min-ju's first feature film, also received the International Jury Prize.

See the trailer for A letter form Kyoto


Hwa-ja has raised her three daughters alone after the death of her husband. One day, the second, Hye-young, who dreams of becoming a writer, returns to Yeongdo in Busan after experiencing setbacks in Seoul. Yeongdo is a lively neighborhood where many foreigners settle, and legend has it that once you enter, you can't easily escape. The eldest daughter, Hye-jin, is the family breadwinner, while the youngest, Hye-joo, dreams of moving to Seoul when she graduates from high school. While Hye-young is spending time with her mother, she stumbles across a letter written in Japanese that arouses her curiosity. She begins to question Hwa-ja about her past life and learns new stories she'd never heard before. Meanwhile, something in Hwa-ja's heart, buried for decades, slowly opens up.