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Florida Festival wraps with awards

14th ANNUAL FLORIDA FILM FESTIVAL – April 8 – 17, 2005
Wraps With Awards, Conversation & Tributes

Saturday, April 16th was a busy day at the 2005 FLORIDA FILM FESTIVAL as the event presented its Filmmaker Awards at a luncheon held at the Enzian Theatre; followed by the annual “Afternoon With…” film and conversation with this year’s warmly received guests Paul Reiser and Peter Falk and a screening of their new film THE THING ABOUT MY FOLKS; and then on into the evening’s Florida Film Festival Revel, a wildly and decadently fun outdoor 1920’s (to celebrate the Enzian’s 20th Anniversary, of course) style Gatsbyesque Lawn Party at which the Festival presented Peter Falk with its Lifetime Achievement Award and Paul Reiser with the Fest’s Artistic Achievement Award.

Among this year’s American Independent Competition Jury members were: for Narrative Features - Director Morgan J. Freeman, Producer Lauren Lloyd, and Acquisitions Executive for Wellspring Rob Williams; for Documentaries – Filmmaker Paul Devlin, Film Publicist/Marketing Consultant Susan Norget, and Supervisor of Acquisitions and Program Planning at Showtime Networks Bryan Younce; for Short Films – Co-President of Avatar Films Jason Leaf, Filmmaker Chel White, and head of theatrical sales for Zeitgeist Films Emily Woodburne.

The 2005 Florida Film Festival Grand Jury Award for Best Narrative Feature was presented to: THE CIVILIZATION OF MAXWELL BRIGHT, directed by David Beaird.

The 2005 Florida Film Festival Grand Jury Award for Best Documentary was presented to: MARDI GRAS: MADE IN CHINA, directed by David Redmon.

The 2005 Florida Film Festival Grand Jury Award for Best Narrative Short was presented to: FIELDS OF MUDAN, directed by Stevo.

The 2005 Florida Film Festival Grand Jury Award for Best Animated Short was presented to "9", directed by Shane Acker.

The 2005 Florida Film Festival Grand Jury Award for Best Documentary Short was presented to: PHANTOM LIMB, directed by Jay Rosenblatt.

Special Jury Awards were also announced:

Special Jury Award for Originality was presented to: THE RAFTMAN'S RAZOR, directed by Keith Bearden.
Special Jury Award for Excellence in Filmmaking was presented to: PUCKER UP: THE FINE ART OF WHISTLING, directed by Kate Davis & David Heilbroner.
Special Jury Award for Narrative Filmmaking was presented to: ON THE OUTS, directed by Lori Silverbush & Michael Skolnik.

Audience Awards were also presented at the Luncheon. Audience members vote on their favorite films in the three American Independent Competition categories.

The 2005 FFF Audience Award for Best Narrative Feature was presented to: LOGGERHEADS, directed by Tim Kirkman.

The 2005 FFF Audience Award for Best Documentary Feature was presented to: PUCKER UP: THE FINE ART OF WHISTLING, directed by Kate Davis & David Heilbroner.

The 2005 FFF Audience Award for Best Short was presented to: MIGHTY TIMES: THE CHILDREN'S MARCH, directed by Bobby Houston & Robert Hudson.

The 14th Annual Florida Film Festival kicked off on Friday, April 8th with Director Alice Wu and Actress Joan Chen in town for their Opening Night film, SAVING FACE; and wrapped on Sunday, April 17th with the high-energy spoof KUNG FU HUSTLE. In between, were 8 more days and nights of film festival frenzy and fun with over 130 films, panels and events. There were wine tastings from Festival sponsor Sterling Vineyards; “Stop By. Shoot Film,” presented by Kodak, a hands-on opportunity offered to festival-goers to experience the thrill of movie-making from behind and in-front of the camera; a well-attended outdoor screening of REBEL WITHOUT A CAUSE; and, of course, all those terrific film festival parties just for starters. The Festival presented panels and forums on Music Videos (moderated by Full Sail’s Associate Director for Music History Matt Gorney and featuring panelists Phil Harder of Harder/Fuller Films, Director Vem, Director’s Rep Jennifer Amerine, and founder of Stompbox Creative Management Justine K. Smith); Producer’s Reps (moderated by indie film maven John Pierson, and featuring panelists Liesl Copland from Cinetic Media, Entertainment Attorney Ben Feldman; President of Lantern Lane Entertainment David Garber, and Diana Holtzberg of Films Transit International; Distribution (moderated by film buyer Don Henry, and featuring distribution experts Lori Bandazian from Lions Gate Films, Greg Forston from Fine Line Features, and Michael Tuckman from THINKFilm); and the Florida Filmmakers Forum (moderated by Director of Operations and Film Festival Coordinator for the University of Central Florida Rich Grula, and featuring homegrown filmmakers Gregg Hale, Brit Marling, Tony West, Hannah Beth King and Ben Van Hook). In its third year, festival program NEXTART: THE FUTURE OF ENTERTAINMENT which celebrates the cutting edge of creativity developed by current visionaries, presented SPONTANEOUS PERCUSSION. Through the magic of wireless digital communication (the program was sponsored by Sprint), nifty new technology and high-energy participation a group festival attendees with their drums, castanets, washtubs and whatever else they could pound on, gathered in the park in downtown Winter Park to shoot the images, lay the soundtrack, and see it mixed all together right before their eyes. It was truly an interactive media extravaganza.

The 2006 Florida Film Festival is set to take place at the beautiful Enzian Theatre in Winter Park in March 24-April 2, 2006.


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