Tibetan filmmaker Pema Tseden’s film Old Dog won the award for Best Narrative Feature at the Brooklyn Film Festival, which ran from June 1 to 10.
According to Phayul.com, the film won out over more than a hundred other titles from nearly thirty countries, taking home a total of $57,000 USD in prizes and film services. Christopher Bell, writing for Indiewire, calls Old Dog “a true gem and the mark of an especially skilled director — mark our words, Pema Tseden is a name you’ll be seeing in contention for the Palme d’Or in the not-too-distant future.”
In another piece by Indiewire, Tseden says, “I tried to show people the traditional way of life and the social change taking place. For instance, in this film, there’s a story inside a story — that young couple couldn’t have a child. Through that kind of situation I’m trying to tell people what is current in Tibet. Things are changing.”
Tseden says his next project, titled America, will be “about a Western cow, not the traditional one found in Tibet. This time the story would take place in Central Tibet. One family purchased a very expensive cow from a foreign country because they were told that it would produce a lot of milk. They’re unsure what to name it, and since they know there are a lot of these in America, that’s what they name it. When they attempt to breed it, it inexplicably dies, leading to an investigation from the security department. Because of this chain of events, the relationships between people in this particular tight-knit village change, which is the main point I’m going for. It’s structurally different from Old Dog, and the movie will start when the cow is already dead, with people giving their individual stories to the security department.”