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Winners of the 2020 GSA BAFTA Student Film Awards Announced

10 August 2020

Special Jury Prize Awarded To New York University Graduate Laura Zéphirin for her film “Making Waves.”

Short Film Commissioning Grants presented to support new projects on the subject of wellness.

Replay the Online Presentation on BAFTA’s YouTube Channel.

The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) has announced the winners of the 2020 GSA BAFTA Student Film Awards in a digital ceremony hosted by actor Elliot Knight on August 7. The presentation is available to watch on BAFTA’s YouTube channel.

The BAFTA Student Film Award for Animation was awarded to Milan Baulard, Ismaïl Berrahma, Flore Dupont, Laurie Estampes, Quentin Nory and Hugo Potin from École des Nouvelles Images, France for “Sous La Glace.” The BAFTA Student Film Award for Documentary was awarded to Lucas Guilkey from University of California, Berkeley, USA for “What Happened to Dujuan Armstrong?.” The BAFTA Student Film Award for Live Action was awarded to Tatiana Fedorovskaya from Higher Courses for Screenwriters and Film Directors, Russia for “Mum’s Hairpins.”

The Special Jury Prize was presented to Laura Zéphirin from New York University, USA for “Making Waves.” The Special Jury of industry luminaries who selected the winning film included journalist and filmmaker Waad Al-Kateab (“For Sama”), director Isabel Coixet (“The Bookshop”), director Reinaldo Marcus Green (“Monsters and Men”), actress Gugu Mbatha-Raw (“The Morning Show”) and actor Clarke Peters (“Da 5 Bloods”).

Student finalists accepted their awards virtually from their home countries, having taken part in a series of online events held by BAFTA. This year’s finalist films, which were set in the U.S., Ghana, Uganda, Cambodia, Ukraine, Bosnia, Herzegovina and various other countries in Europe, told stories that are at once personal and universal and tackled issues as diverse as ecosystem collapse, racial and economic justice, land mine detection, the plight of refugees, and the Holocaust.

Additionally, the BAFTA-GSA Short Film Commissioning Grant was awarded to Mishal Mahmud from The University of Southern California, USA for her film, “Witness” and Julio Ramos for his film “Premature.” The USD 12,000 commissioning grant was launched last year to provide filmmakers with a platform to raise awareness and encourage change in how wellbeing is understood amongst 15 to 25-year-olds. This year’s winning films were selected by the BAFTA-GSA Grant Jury, comprised of director Andrew Ahn, CEO of The UK Asian Film Festival Dr. Pushpinder Chowdhry MBE, actress Lily Collins, director Claire Fleming, Global Head of Student Wellbeing and External Relations at GSA Bobbi Hartshorne, actress Tracy Ifeachor and curator and producer Lucy Mukerjee.

"We are truly humbled by the talent and artistry of this year’s finalists, and proud of how this international program can provide a platform for new voices, unique stories, and alternative perspectives,” said Louise Chater, Peter Morris and Sandro Monetti, Co-Chairs of the BAFTA LA Learning & New Talent Committee. “The GSA BAFTA Student Film Awards have demonstrated that in spite of the incredible difficulties the year has brought, the desire to remain connected and to come together to support a new generation of creatives and storytellers remains as strong as ever."

“It was an honor to host this year’s BAFTA Student Film Awards,” said host Elliot Knight. “This initiative is a valuable opportunity for the industry to come together to recognize and reward some of the most talented student filmmakers globally, and I look forward to seeing what’s in store for them in the future.”

The GSA BAFTA Student Film Awards celebrates and rewards the next generation of talented and innovative filmmakers from around the globe. As one of BAFTA’s most global initiatives, this year’s nine finalists were selected from almost 700 submissions by students from film schools in 35 countries across Europe, North America, South America, Africa, Asia and Australia.

In 2019, the BAFTA Student Film Award for Animation was awarded to the film “Hors Piste,” directed by Leó Brunel, Loris Cavalier, Camille Jalabert and Oscar Malet of École des Nouvelles Images, France. The BAFTA Student Film Award for Documentary was awarded to “Guanajuato Norte” directed by Ingrid Holmquist and Sana Malik of Columbia University, while the BAFTA Student Film Award for Live Action was awarded to “Miller and Son” directed by Asher Jelinsky of the American Film Institute. The Special Jury Prize was presented to Rikke Gregersen from Kristiania University College in Norway for “Dog Eat Dog.” The Special Jury included Victoria Mahoney, Jillian Bell, Josh Cooley and Auroro Guerrero.

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Note to editors: 

Finalist film summaries + trailers HERE

Embed link HERE: <iframe width="560" height="315" src="" frameborder="0" allow="accelerometer; autoplay; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture" allowfullscreen></iframe>

Filmmaker contact information for interview requests available.

For further information:

Caroline Stegner at Rogers & Cowan PMK

[email protected] 

About BAFTA and BAFTA Los Angeles

The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) is a world-leading independent arts charity that brings the very best work in film, games and television to public attention and supports the growth of creative talent in the U.K. and internationally. Through its Awards ceremonies and year-round program of learning events and initiatives – which includes workshops, masterclasses, scholarships, lectures and mentoring schemes in the U.K., U.S. and Asia – BAFTA identifies and celebrates excellence, discovers, inspires and nurtures new talent, and enables learning and creative collaboration. For advice and inspiration from the best creative minds in working in film, games and television, visit For more, visit

Founded in 1987, BAFTA Los Angeles serves as a bridge between the Hollywood and British production and entertainment business communities. Its commitment to professional and community education is at the heart of all activity, including an award-winning community outreach program, screenings, seminars, Q&As, scholarships for British students studying in the U.S., a Newcomers Program for emerging British talents working in the U.S., and a Heritage Archive project that preserves in-depth interviews with the industry's leading talents for future generations. BAFTA Los Angeles celebrates and promotes excellence through its annual Britannia Awards, Film and Television Tea Parties and the Student Film Awards.

BAFTA Los Angeles is a 501(c)3 Non-Profit Corporation and relies on income from membership subscriptions, individual donations, trusts, foundations and corporate partnerships to support its ongoing work.   

About Global Student Accommodation Group (GSA)

The team at Global Student Accommodation Group (GSA) believes that what students learn and take away from university is about much more than the course they are studying. Accommodation is the cornerstone of student life, which is why GSA is focused on developing secure, vibrant communities which help students get the most out of university.

GSA creates spaces to grow for university students by developing, managing and investing in student accommodation across a growing footprint of the world’s top university cities. Students can find a welcoming home away from home at GSA communities in cities across Australia, UAE, China, Germany, Ireland, Japan, Spain and the U.K.

GSA creates communities designed around students under several brands globally – Uninest Student Residences(;; The Student Housing Company (; and Nexo Residencias (

Focused on delivering high levels of service, security and attention to detail, GSA’s team aims to deliver the best student living and hospitality experience possible. Exceptional customer service underpins GSA’s strong communities, as does the company’s unique Student Wellbeing Strategy. Since 2018, the award-winning 9-pillar framework has been providing quality in-residence services to support students during what can be vulnerable transitions in their lives, raising awareness of potential catalysts for stress and teaching students the skills and resilience to overcome them. By the end of 2019, 30,000 students globally will have had access to the programme.

The BAFTA Student Film Awards 2020 are presented by Global Student Accommodation (GSA).