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Prison drama Cell 211 dominates Spain's Goyas

Cell 211

Story by Jack Foley

TOUGH prison drama Cell 211 emerged as the big winner at the 24th Goya Awards ceremony with eight prizes on Sunday (February 14, 2010).

The film not only took best film, director (for Daniel Monzon) and adapted script, but also actor for Luis Tosar’s portrayal of a prison inmate.

It was closely followed by Alejandro Amenabar’s epic film Agora, which won seven prizes, including best original screenplay.

In a night of surprises, best actress favourite Penelope Cruz lost out to Lola Duenas for her role in Me Too. Cruz, who attended with Javier Bardem, had widely been expected to triumph for her performance in Pedro Almodovar’s Broken Embraces.

The biggest talking point of the evening, however, was the surprise appearance by that film’s director, Almodovar, who presented the best film award to Monzon.

His appearance marked a new peace with the Spanish Film Academy, which he had often accused of snubbing his films, eventually forcing him to quit the academy in 2005 following further disagreements with its voting procedures.

On Sunday, however, he received a standing ovation and commented: “I’m here because you have a very persistent president. He [Alex de la Iglesia] pestered me until two days ago. And I had a lot of excuses, but he wouldn’t take no for an answer.”

View photos from the ceremony

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