Mexican director Ernesto Contreras won the Audience Award: World Cinema Dramatic for "Sueño en otro idioma" (I Dream in Another Language) at the Sundance Film Festival.
The film tells the story of the arrival of a linguist in a community that is home to the last two speakers of a millennia-old language who have not spoken in 50 years.
Contreras said during the awards ceremony Saturday in Park City, Utah, that the prize was important "on many levels" because it was a recognition of "diversity," "inclusion" and "acceptance."
The 47-year-old Mexican director called for using "imagination and magic" to "stop building walls and bring everyone together," a reference to US President Donald Trump's plan to build a wall along the border with Mexico to keep out drugs and illegal immigrants.
"Let us make our voices heard," Contreras told the audience.
Chile's Francisca Alegria won the Short Film Jury Award: International Fiction for "Y todo el cielo cupo en el ojo de la vaca muerta" (And The Whole Sky Fit In The Dead Cow's Eye), while Brazil's Fernando Coimbra received one of the Global Filmmaking Awards for "The Hanged."
The US Grand Jury Prize: Dramatic went to "I Don't Feel at Home in This World Anymore," a film directed and written by Macon Blair.
"This has been one of the wildest, wackiest and most rewarding festivals in recent memory. From a new government to the independently organized Women's March on Main, to power outages, a cyberattack and snow at record levels, the work of our artists rose above it all and challenged and changed us these last 10 days," Sundance Film Festival director John Cooper said in a statement.
A total of 119 feature-length films and 68 short films were screened at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival.