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Linnea Skog, 13, won the Jussi Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role at the Cable Factory in Helsinki on Friday evening. It’s her performance in Tyttö nimeltä Varpu (A Girl Called Varpu) that made the organization of film critics, Filmiaura, to bow over Skog’s spectacular performance as a young girl searching for her father she has never met.

Linnea Skog, 13, wins the award for Best Actress in a Leading Role at the Finnish film awards, Jussi Gala, on March 24, 2017. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

“Thank you for your support – family, actors the working group . . . ,” Skog said on stage, holding the award, tears running down her cheeks. “Young people, believe in yourself – that’s how dreams come true!”


As pretty much expected, Hymyilevä mies (The Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Mäki) grabbed the Jussi for Best Film. The black-and-white flick telling the story of Finnish boxer Olli Mäki has [highlight color=#FFFF00 ]won awards across the globe[/highlight]. It’s the artistic flavor combined with the depiction of an honest Finnish man, a boxer, with all his flaws and weaknesses that make this one a winner. It’s no wonder that Jarkko Lahti, who plays Olli Mäki, grabbed the Jussi for Best Actor in a Leading Role as well.

Director Tuukka Temonen with his wife Olga at the Jussi Awards on March 24, 2017. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

The prize for Audience Favorite went to Teit meistä kauniin (You Made Us Beautiful), [highlight color=#FFFF00 ]one of our favorites as well[/highlight]. The film depicts the rise of a small-town band Apulanta that became one of the most popular Finnish bands in the 90’s.

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Director Tuukka Temonen had a message to the youth as well: “We are a great example of what one can achieve by believing in their dreams,” he said. “That’s why we’re here.”

[divider]What is Jussi Awards?[/divider]

Jussi Awards celebrates the best achievements in Finnish cinema. The awards are given by Filmiaura, an association of Finnish film professionals. The Jussi Awards cover altogether 15 categories. The first Jussis were given in 1944 and it’s one of the oldest film awards in Europe. The trophy, designed by sculptor Ben Renvall, is made of gypsum and depicts a nude man with a hat.