The 2009 Los Angeles Film Festival just wrapped up on June 28 and the Independent Film Alliance has announced the award-winners at this year's festival. Take a look at the full list of award winners below.
Target Filmmaker Award (for Best Narrative Feature)
Winner: Wah Do Dem (What They Do) written and directed by Sam Fleischner & Ben Chace
Producers: Sam Fleischner, Katina Hubbard, Ben Chace, Martha Lapham, Henry Kasdon
Cast: Sean Bones, Norah Jones, Kevin Bewersdorf, Carl Bradshaw
Film Description: Max's dream Caribbean cruise becomes a solitary odyssey after his girlfriend dumps him days before their departure. Now, he'll have to go with the Jamaican flow in this disarming and incisive debut feature.
The Target Filmmaker Award carries an unrestricted cash prize of $50,000 funded by Target, offering the financial means to help filmmakers transfer their vision to the screen. The award recognizes the finest narrative film in competition, and is given to the director. A special jury selects the winner, and all narrative feature-length films screening in the Narrative Competition section were eligible.
In bestowing Sam Fleischner and Ben Chace with the Target Filmmaker Award, the Jury stated:
"A film that could feel anecdotal but through its musical shifts and tone, and its vision of the world as a newly optimistic place, Wah Do Dem (What They Do) creates a strong and profound emotional narrative."
Target Documentary Award (for Best Documentary Feature)
Winner: Those Who Remain (Los Que se Quedan) directed by Juan Carlos Rulfo and Carlos Hagerman
Producers: Juan Carlos Rulfo, Carlos Hagerman, Martha Sosa Elizondo, Nicolas Vale
Film Description: (Mexico) This intimate and discerning depiction of the impact of migration on families left behind by loved ones who travel north emerges as a nuanced portrait of "the other side" of the immigration story.
The Target Documentary Award carries an unrestricted cash prize of $50,000 funded by Target, offering the financial means to help filmmakers transfer their vision to the screen. The award recognizes the finest documentary film in competition, and is given to the director. A special jury selects the winner, and all documentary feature-length films screening in the Documentary Competition section were eligible.
In bestowing Juan Carlos Rulfo and Carlos Hagerman with the Target Documentary Award, the Jury stated:
"With its generosity of spirit and lyrical grace that illuminates a human landscape with fresh eyes, Those Who Remain reminds us that documentaries can be both journalism and poetry."
Target Dream in Color Award (for Best Short in the Future Filmmaker
Winner: Lipstick directed by Sam Rubin
Producer: The Film Workshop of SF Art & Film
Cast: Sam Rubin
Film Description: A boy locks himself in a bathroom. His mother wants to know if he is OK.
The Target Dream in Color Award was given to Sam Rubin for Lipstick and recognizes a film that inspires audiences to dream without boundaries and share culture in a unique and positive way. This award is the first time a cash grant was given to a participant in the Los Angeles Film Festival's Future Filmmaker Showcase, a short film program targeted to young and talented emerging filmmakers in high school.
In bestowing Sam Rubin with the Target Dream in Color Award, the Jury stated:
"We congratulate all the filmmakers on their extraordinary work. While we were impressed with the scope and diversity of all the high school shorts, we select Lipstick, a simple and powerful film, which can inspire other future filmmakers to make movies with very little. Using just two props, one location, and two actors, the filmmaker creates a compelling story about a character dealing with personal yet universal issues of identity and communication. It is a visual film with a strong point of view. In Lipstick, we see both a present and future filmmaker."
Outstanding Performance in the Narrative Competition
Winner: Shayne Topp in Suzi Yoonessi's Dear Lemon Lima,
Film Description: "As sweet and colorful as a snow cone, this delightful happy-sad confection follows an awkward Alaskan teen as she discovers her Yup'ik heritage while rallying her fellow misfits to compete in her school's Snow-storm Survivor competition."
In bestowing Shayne Topp with Outstanding Performance recognition, the Jury stated:
"For his sophisticated and nuanced comic performance in a role that is often played in less subtle ways by more experienced actors, the award goes to Shayne Topp from Dear Lemon Lima,."
Audience Award for Best Narrative Feature
Winner: The Stoning of Soraya M. written by Betsy Giffen Nowrasteh and Cyrus Nowrasteh and directed by Cyrus Nowrasteh
Producers: Stephen McEveety, John Shepherd
Cast: Shohreh Aghdashloo, Mozhan Marnò, Jim Caviezel
Film Description: Based on Freidoune Sahebjam's international bestseller, this visceral drama, which tells the true story of a tragic incident of oppression, conspiracy and betrayal, gathers tension and outrage as it builds to its inevitable conclusion.
This award is given to the narrative feature audiences liked most as voted by a tabulated rating system. Select narrative feature-length films screening in the following sections were eligible for the Audience Award for Best Narrative Feature: Narrative Competition, International Showcase, International Spotlight, Summer Showcase, Outdoor Screenings at the Ford Amphitheatre, Dark Wave, Guilty Pleasures, and Special Screenings.
Audience Award for Best Documentary Feature
Winner: Soul Power directed by Jeffrey Levy-Hinte
Producers: Leon Gast, Jeffrey Levy-Hinte, David Sonenberg
Featuring: James Brown, Bill Withers, B.B. King, The Spinners, Celia Cruz and the Fania All-Stars, Muhammad Ali, Don King, Stewart Levine
Film Description: This blazing concert film documents "Zaire '74," the sister event to the famed Ali/Foreman "Rumbling in the Jungle," featuring previously unseen performances by James Brown, B.B. King, Bill Withers, Celia Cruz and others.
This award is given to the documentary feature audiences liked most as voted on by a tabulated rating system. Select documentary feature-length films screening in the following sections were eligible for the Audience Award for Best Documentary Feature: Documentary Competition, International Showcase, International Spotlight, Summer Showcase, Outdoor Screenings at the Ford Amphitheatre, and Special Screenings.
Audience Award for Best International Feature
Winner: Born Without (Nacido Sin) written & directed by Eva Norvind
Producers: Eva Norvind, Nailea Norvind, Donald K. Ranvaud
Featuring: José Flores, Graciela Flores, Alejandro Jodorowsky
Film Description: (Mexico) A remarkably frank portrait of the lives and loves of José Flores - a street musician, actor, father of six, and Romeo who was born without arms and stands only three feet tall.
This award is given to the international feature audiences liked most as voted on by a tabulated rating system. Select international feature-length films, both narrative and documentary, in the Narrative Competition, Documentary Competition, International Showcase, International Spotlight, Summer Showcase, Outdoor Screenings at the Ford Amphitheatre, Dark Wave, and Special Screenings were eligible for the Audience Award for Best International Feature.
Best Narrative Short Film
Winner: Time and Again written & directed by Antonio Mendez Esparza
Producers: Florin Serban, Diana Wade
Cast: Pedro Santos, Erica Heras
Description: Pedro's dreams about his future are challenged by an unforeseen turn of events.
In bestowing Antonio Mendez Esparza with Best Narrative Short Film, the Jury stated:
"For its raw and atmospheric visual palette, bold use of real and rarely seen locations, and cast which brought a refreshing realism, the award goes to Time and Again, an ambitious portrait of an immigrant's struggle to find love in a new land."
Best Documentary Short Film
Winner: Replayground by Anna Gaskell
Producers: Anna Gaskell
Featuring: Brookti Berne, Harris Rosenberg, James Gray
Description: Roles are reversed in this hilarious reenactment of a children's quarrel.
In bestowing Anna Gaskell with Best Documentary Short Film, the Jury
"The award goes to Replayground. The concept was so fresh and unexpected in its use of children's visions of their playground actions as content for a play that they would then be entrusted to cast and direct. A case of a brilliant premise carrying a film."
Best Animated Short Film
Winner: Skhizein by Jérémy Clapin
Producers: Wendy Griffiths, Stéphane Piera
Cast: Julien Boisseller, Theo Grimmelsen, Mado Debrus
Description: (France) After a 150-ton meteorite strikes, Henry's physical existence is forever altered.
In bestowing Jérémy Clapin with Best Animated Short Film, the Jury stated:
"The award goes to Skhizein, for its use of animation to tell a story no other medium could, that of a character who finds himself literally beside himself, creating an elegant interlocking of story animation and character."
Audience Award for Best Short Film
Winner: Instead of Abracadabra by Patrik Eklund
Producer: Mathias Fjellström
Cast: Simon J. Berger, Jacob Nordenson, Anki Larsson, Saga Gärde
Description: Tomas attempts to impress his family and the beautiful Monica with his dazzling feats of magic.
Awarded to the short film audiences liked most as voted on by a
tabulated rating system. Short films screening in the Shorts Programs
or before Narrative Competition, Documentary Competition, or
International Showcase feature-length screenings were eligible for the
Audience Award for Best Short Film.
Audience Award for Best Music Video
Winner: Grapevine Fires by Walter Robot
Music: Death Cab For Cutie
Description: When a wildfire rages through a small suburb, a boy must save his older brother, and in the process finds what is really important in life.
This award is given to the music video audiences liked most as voted
on by a tabulated rating system.