Iran's Reza Najie wins Berlin Film Festival's top actor award

Other News Materials 16 February 2008 23:18 (UTC +04:00)

( dpa ) - Leading Iranian actor Reza Najie won on Saturday the Berlin Film's coveted award for best actor.

He played a stressed-out father trying to keep his family financially afloat in Iranian director Majid Majidi's light poignant comedy The Song of Sparrows (Avaze Gonjeshk-Ha).

British actress Sally Hawkins goes home with the festival's award for best actress for her role in British director Mike Leigh's Happy Go Lucky about a positive-thinking Londoner called Poppy.

Speaking after accepting the festival's Silver Bear, Najie said it was his destiny to come to Berlin. "Thank you Berlin, thank you cinema," he told the gala awards ceremony in the German capital.

Hawkins said she had been completely overwhelmed after receiving the prize and had burst into tears after leaving the stage.

Now in its 58th year, the Berlinale is one of the world's top three film festivals.