Australian-German-UK co-production Lore has won the Locarno Film Festival's Prix du Public award, which is awarded to the most popular film screened in the Swiss town's Piazza Grande.
The 65th edition of the festival closed on Saturday, August 11, with the awards ceremony on the Piazza Grande drawing an audience of several thousand.
Cate Shortland’s war drama follows Lore, who leads her younger siblings across a war-torn Germany in 1945 after her Nazi parents are imprisoned.
“I am really excited by the way the film has been received in Europe – and proud of all our young actors," Shortland said in a statement. "Locarno was a magical screening for 8000 people under the stars. It started to rain about three quarters of the way through but people stood under the eaves and waited to see the end. I’ll never forget it.”
Lore will have its North American premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival and be released in Australian cinemas on September 20.
French film La Fille de Nulle Parte (The Girl From Nowhere) received the festival's top international prize, the Golden Leopard. The film is about a retired teacher living in Paris who gives shelter to a young woman running away from her partner.
A complete list of the festival's winners can be found at the Palmarès 2012 site.