“The Man in the High Castle” took home the top prize at the Roma Fiction Fest on Sunday, just days before its Nov. 20 debut on Amazon.
In accepting the award for Best New TV Series, “High Castle” writer/executive producer Frank Spotnitz paid tribute to Paris in the wake of the Nov. 13 terrorist attacks that killed more than 120 people.
“This means a lot to me. My adopted city now is Paris, so obviously my thoughts are with the people of Paris,” Spotnitz said, referring to an earlier speech during the ceremony. “I would like to pick up what Sergio Castellitto said—which was so wise—which is that we mustn’t be afraid, because people do terrible things when they’re afraid and they make bad decisions. And that is what [the terrorists] want.”
“‘Man in the High Castle’ is about a world where the wrong guys have won. And what it tells you is there’s nothing inevitable about the good guys winning. And so if we want a just world we have to fight for it. And that’s a message I’m very proud to stand behind.”
Spotnitz accepted the award from Steven Van Zandt, chairman of the jury that decided winners in the ninth edition of the international competition. Van Zandt, who currently stars in the Netflix series “Lillyhammer,” played Silvio Dante on “The Sopranos” and was a guitarist with Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band.
“I’ve probably seen him in concert 50 times,” Spotnitz said of Van Zandt. “I’m not joking. So this is an extra thrill.”
Other members of the international jury included actors Geppi Cucciari and Maureen Van Zandt, writers Giancarlo De Cataldo and Stefano Disegni and journalist Gloria Satta.
“Man in the High Castle” is based on a novel by Philip K. Dick. It tells the story of an alternate reality in which the Nazi Germany and imperial Japan won World War II. By 1962, they had divided the United States into three sections: an East Coast ruled by the Nazis, a West Coast dominated by the Japanese and a neutral zone following the Rocky Mountains.
Here are the other honorees at Sunday’s ceremony at the Cinema Adriano. All awards are for new TV series/limited series/TV movies.
Best Actress: Kasia Smutniak for Italy’s “Limbo”
Best Actor: Rami Malek for USA Network’s “Mr. Robot”
Best Director: Erik Skjoldbjærg for “Occupied,” a Norway and French co-production
Best Screenplay: Peter Bowker for Britain’s “Capital”
Special Jury Award: Germany’s “Deutschland 83,” which aired in the U.S. on Sundance channel.
Best TV Series for Young People*: “Mr. Robot,” which aired on USA Network in the U.S. (*Prize awarded by the jury of children.)
Special awards for artistic excellence
- Andrew Davies
- Jason Reitman
- Steven Van Zandt
- Paul Haggis
- Valeria Bruni Tedeschi
- Sergio Castellitto
- Excellence Awards Kids & Teens Production
- Iginio Straffi and “Cartoon Saloon”
- Best Screenplay: Francis Scardamaglia for “1992”
- Special Mention: TV movie “A House in the Heart”
- LARA Award for Best Actor: Guido Caprino for “1992”
- LARA Award for Best Actress: Anita Caprioli for “The Road Straight”
- Carlo Bixio Award for best original screenplay for fiction: “Strangers”