For Sama: Syrian War Documentary Wins Top Award

Syrian civil war documentary For Sama received an awards season boost on Sunday night as it earned top honors at the British Independent Film Awards.

The film by Waad al-Kateab and Edward Watts — a scarring portrait of a young mother’s experience during the ongoing Middle East conflict — earned best British independent film, director and documentary honors at the ceremony.

Another big BIFA winner was Armando Iannucci’s The Personal History of David Copperfield. A twist on Charles Dickens’ classic, the film earned Hugh Laurie the best supporting actor award for his portrayal of Mr. Dick and the best screenplay award for Iannucci and Simon Blackwell.

Additionally, the picture earned honors for best casting, costume design and production design.

Renee Zellweger was voted as best actress for playing Judy Garland in Judy, while Josh O’Connor, who can currently be seen as Prince Charles on The Crown, won the best actor prize for Only You. O’Connor won the same award in 2017 for God’s Own Country.

Kristin Scott Thomas was presented with the 2019 Richard Harris Award for outstanding contribution by an actor to British film.

Outgoing British Film Institute CEO Amanda Nevill was awarded a special jury prize.