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Alumnus Juho Kuosmanen nabs top prize in Cannes

The Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Mäki directed by Juho Kuosmanen won the top prize in the Un Certain Regard selection at the Cannes Festival.

The Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Mäki (Hymyilevä mies) had its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival last Thursday, and competed for the prize with 17 other films. Swiss actress Marthe Keller, the chair of the Un Certain Regard selection jury awarded the prize to Mr Kuosmanen at the awards ceremony on Saturday night.

The Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Mäki is based on the true story of Olli Mäki, who was the first Finn to compete in a boxing world championship match at the Helsinki Olympic Stadium in 1962. Mäki lost the match in the second round by knock out in front of 23,000 spectators, but still said that the day was the happiest of his life.

The black and white feature was filmed by J-P Passi and written by Mr Kuosmanen and Mikko Myllylahti.

Kuosmanen's The Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Mäki will premiere in Finnish cinemas in autumn 2016.

Second Cannes award

In 2010, Kuosmanen's fictional film Taulukauppiaat (The Painting Sellers) was awarded the main prize for the Cinéfondation selection for student films in Cannes. Kuosmanen's film The Painting Sellers was his thesis project at Aalto University's Department of Film, Television and Scenography.

In 2008, Kuosmanen´s film Roadmarkers (Kestomerkitsijät, 2007) placed third in the Cinéfondation selection.

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