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Angelus Student Film Festival Awards

The 13th annual Angelus Student Film Festival presented its 2008 winners and finalists with more than $50,000 in cash awards and industry prizes at its screening and awards ceremony, Saturday, September 13, 6 p.m., at the Directors Guild of America.

The event, emceed by Emmy Award-winning network host Chris Balish, honors and showcases future filmmakers as they explore and create works that respect the dignity of the human person. The winning and honorable mentioned films were screened at afternoon and evening screenings.

The top prize, the Patrick Peyton Excellence in Filmmaking Award, was presented to Reto Caffi, of the Academy of Media Arts, Cologne, Germany, for his film On The Line, in which a department store security guard is racked with guilt after not helping a victim being attacked on the subway. The award is the most coveted among Angelus entrants and includes a cash prize of $10,000, believed to be one of the highest among student film festivals. It is sponsored by Family Theater Productions, Hollywood, which created the Angelus Student Film Festival in 1996.

Other awards presented were the $5,000 Triumph of the Spirit Award, sponsored by the Peter Glenville Foundation for the film that best reflects a redemptive theme (Small Change, written and directed by Anna McGrath; the $2,500 Audience Impact Award, sponsored by Maryknoll Productions and Fujifilm (In The Name Of The Son, directed by Harun Mehmedinovic; the $2,500 Production Excellence Award; sponsored by Mole-Richardson lighting company (Deface, directed by John Arlotto); the $3,000 Outstanding Documentary Award sponsored by the Priddy Brothers production and distribution company (As We Forgive, directed by Laura Waters Hinson) ; and the $2,000 Outstanding Animation Award, sponsored by the Catholic Academy for Communication Arts Professionals (Sebastian’s Voodoo, directed by Joaquin Baldwin); and the $500 Director’s Choice Award, a selection of the Angelus staff (Replacement Child, directed by Justin Lerner). Winners along with finalists also received film industry products and other prizes. (Winners and Honorable Mentions are listed at end of this press release.)

The 22 finalists, and thus the seven winners, were selected from over 470 submissions representing 132 film schools and 22 countries, including the United States, Iceland, Germany, Bulgaria and Egypt.

Festival juries comprised of industry professionals, including film industry executives from Alcon Entertainment, seasoned screenwriters and producers convened in August to select the winners from the finalists. This year’s documentary jury featured an all-star panel of award-winning documentary filmmakers and editors, HBO executives, and film producers.

Caffi joins an impressive list of Angelus winners or “alumni” including Hilla Medalia (2004 Outstanding Documentary winner), whose 2007 documentary, To Die in Jerusalem, aired on HBO and was awarded the prestigious Peabody Award and was nominated for three 2008 Emmy Awards; Christof Putzel (2002 Outstanding Documentary winner), who received two 2008 Emmy nominations for his documentaries Mogadishu Madness and From Russia with Hate; and the 2006 grand-prize winner Barbara Stepansky, who just completed her debut feature Hurt from High Treason Productions, starring Melora Walters and William Mapother.

MovieMaker magazine cited Angelus as the “best student film festival bet” for student moviemakers in its January 2005 issue and placed it first in its profiles on “the best and most interesting student film festivals that America has to offer” in its Summer 2005 educational issue.
Angelus Student Film Festival creator Family Theater Productions, a Catholic media outlet, has produced more than 900 dramatic and documentary TV and radio programs over the last 61 years to entertain, inspire and educate families.

The 2008 Angelus Student Film Festival winners
Patrick Peyton Excellence in Filmmaking Award, $10,000 – Reto Caffi, On the Line, Academy of Media Arts, Germany.

Triumph of the Spirit Award, $5,000 – Anna McGrath, Small Change, Victorian College of the Arts, Australia.

Production Excellence Award, $2,500 – John Arlotto, Deface, Art Center College of Design, Pasadena.

Audience Impact Award, $2,500 – Harun Mehmedinovic, In the Name of the Son, American Film Institute, Los Angeles.

Director’s Choice Award, $500 – Justin Lerner, The Replacement Child, University of California, Los Angeles.

Outstanding Documentary Award, $3,000 – Laura Waters Hinson, As We Forgive, American University, Washington, D.C.

Outstanding Animation Award, $2,000 – Joaquin Baldwin, Sebastian’s Voodoo, University of California, Los Angeles.

The 2008 Angelus Student Film Festival Honorable Mentions

Triumph of the Spirit – Christian Bagger, 15-40, American Film Institute, Los Angeles.

Outstanding Animation – Timothy Reckart, Token Hunchback, Harvard University.

Outstanding Animation – Remy Schaepman, A Sheep on the Roof, Institute of Saint Genevieve, Paris.

Outstanding Documentary – J.J. Adler, Unattached, Columbia University, New York.

For more information, please visit the website at

Photo caption:
L to R. Larry Rich, Executive Director, Maryknoll Productions and Harun Mehmedinovic, (American Film Institute, Los Angeles ) recipient of the Maryknoll Productions/Fuji Film Audience Impact Award for In the Name of the Son, September 13, 2008 Directors Guild Of America, Hollywood.


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