Jerzy Skolimowski’s EO, Poland’s contender for the 2023 Oscars in the best international feature category, has won this year’s Arab Critics’ Awards for European Films at the Cairo International Film Festival.
The award was unveiled at a gala ceremony at the Cairo Opera house on Thursday night.
The Polish drama, which follows the trials of a donkey traveling through modern Europe, premiered at the Cannes Film Festival, where it won the jury prize. Skolimowski picked up a best European director nomination for next month’s European Film Awards, and EO is considered a front-runner in the international Oscar race.
Skolimowski accepted his Arab Critics’ honor via video link from Los Angeles, where he is promoting EO to the Academy.
“I am incredibly happy that EO has been appreciated by the Arab Critics’ Circle as it must mean that my simple story of a donkey has moved people’s hearts across different cultures,” the director said. “It is especially important to me that this plea for empathy for animals seems so universal.”
The Arab Critics’ Awards for European Films was launched in 2019 as a spin-off from the ACC’s main Critics’ Awards, in a bid to boost film diversity in the region and raise the interest of local sales companies and distributors for outstanding European films. Previous winners include Teona Strugar Mitevska’s God Exists, Her Name Is Petrunya, Christian Petzold’s Undine, as well as 107 Mothers by Peter Kerekes.
This story originally appeared on HollywoodReporter