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Félix Maritaud wins Iris Prize award for role in controversial gay prostitution drama ‘Sauvage’

The French actor picked up the award for Best Performance in a Male Role at the Iris Prize Festival 2018.

By Will Stroude

Words: Will Stroude

Félix Maritaud has picked up the award for Best Performance in a Male Role at the Iris Prize LGBT+ Film Festival for his role in Sauvage.

The Frencha actor, who appeared in last year’s French AIDS drama 120 (BPM), picked up the award for his role as a struggling gay hustler in the new film from director Camille Vidal-Naquet.

Sauvage, which made headlines earlier this year after film-goers at this year’s Cannes Festival walked out after a particularly visceral sex scene, takes an unflinching look at the world of male sex work as it follows 22-year-old prostitute Leo (Maritaud) on the streets of Strasbourg.

The Iris Prize is Wales’s biggest LGBT+ film festival, and the night’s biggest award – the £30,000 Iris Prize – went to Three Centimetres, from Lebanese filmmaker Lara Zeidan.

The ceremony took place at Cardiff’s Tramshed on Sunday (14 October), and Maritaud said he “pleased and blessed” to havebeen recognised.

“Thank you to the festival for making LGBT+ movies alive in the UK”, the actor said in a video accpetance speech.

The Iris Prize awards show, which marked the culmination of six days of film screenings, parties and talks in Cardiff, included performances by Welsh musical artists Bright Light Bright Light, Lily Beau and These Brittle Bones.

Sauvage, which was released in France in August, is slated for a UK release in 2019. Check out the trailer below: