SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK and THE STORY OF LUKE Among Winners of the 2012 San Diego Film Festival Awards
The 2012 San Diego Film Festival announced its winners including Silver Linings Playbook the Audience Choice for Best Studio Feature. The San Diego Film Foundation presented awards for the competitive categories during the 2012 San Diego Film Festival at the awards ceremony hosted at Kimpton Hotel Palomar in San Diego, September 29. The 11th annual festival ranSeptember 26 through 30th.
Winners were chosen from 32 narrative and 16 documentary films. Shorts winners were chosen from 64 selections in competition. Over 1300 films were submitted to this year’s Festival from 55 countries. The Festival was also host to 11 World premieres, 16 West Coast premieres and 4 US premieres.
The 2012 San Diego Film Festival Awards
Audience Choice Award for Best Studio Feature – Silver Linings Playbook, directed by David O. Russell (The Fighter). Life doesn’t always go according to plan. After a stint in a mental institution, former teacher Pat Solitano moves back in with his parents and tries to reconcile with his ex-wife. Things get more challenging when Pat meets Tiffany, a mysterious girl with problems of her own. Cast: Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence and Robert De Niro.
Audience Choice Award for Best Dramatic Feature Film – Shouting Secrets, directed by Korinna Sehringer, features a prominent Native American cast including: Chaske Spencer and Gil Birmingham from The Twilight Saga film series. Shouting Secrets tells the universal story about a family coming back together under the chaotic event of a parent’s sudden illness. Siblings separated by their past along with their misunderstood father are left dealing with each other both in the tight confines of the hospital where their mother June now lays in a coma and back at the old family home on a Native American reservation.
Audience Choice Award for Best Documentary Feature – Not Yet Begun To Fight, directed by Sabrina Lee and Shasta Grenier. In the space between war and a new battle, NOT YET BEGUN TO FIGHT unfolds, offering an intimate look at the human cost of combat. A retired Marine Colonel reaches out to five men, a new generation returning from the battlefield. He brings them to the river. He puts a fly rod into their hand, teaches them to cast, and shares his secret: there are places where you can still be consumed by a simple act, find joy in a fight, and be redeemed as you gently release another creature, unharmed, into quiet waters.
“We also want to recognize two of the Audience Choice Award films – Shouting Secrets and Not Yet Begun To Fight – were both directed by women. Current industry statistics state only 5% of director roles are held by women, we congratulate these three directors on the success of their films,” said Dale Strack, Chairman of the Board, San Diego Film Foundation.
Special Jury Award for Short Film – Crackers, a dark comedy directed and written by Gregory Principato, is about an Italian chef named Gus whose life is turned upside down after a mishap during a Sunday dinner when his father-in-law chokes to death on an osso bucco bone. Gus ishappy living in his small paradise surrounded by his younger wife, his vibrant garden, his kitchen and his opera music. This all changes when his overbearing, loud, large and obnoxious mother-in-law invades his home. Gus slowly loses his paradise and his sanity as she methodically destroys everything that is sacred to him. Cast: Vincent D’Onofrio, Brenda Vaccaro and Dan Hedaya
“It’s an amazing year at the Festival. All the award-winning Audience Choice Award films honor the diversity of filmmaking this year’s festival has been dedicated to. We are hopeful this recognition brings these films an even bigger, broader audience to experience their stories. All Audience Choice Award winning films share a common bond, where connection – whether family or community – is a key to their journey and sits front and center to the drama of the stories,” shared Tonya Mantooth, Program Director, San Diego Film Festival.
Best Feature Film Award – The Story of Luke – USA – World Premiere. Directed and written by Alonso Mayo. Sheltered by his grandparents, Luke, a young man with autism, is thrust into a world that doesn’t expect anything from him. But Luke is on a quest for a job and true love. And he isn’t taking no for an answer. Cast: Cary Elwes, SethGreen and Kristin Bauer van Straten
Best Comedy Feature Award – 3, 2, 1… Frankie Go Boom – USA. Directed and written by Jordan Roberts. Frank Bartlett has been tortured, embarrassed, and humiliated by his brother Bruce — usually on film — his entire life. Now that Bruce is finally off drugs and has turned his life around, things should be different. They are not. Cast: Sam Anderson, Lizzy Caplan and Whitney Cummings.
Best Foreign Feature Award – Best Little Whorehouse in Rochdale – UK. Directed and written by Ian Vernon. After the untimely death of her husband, shy Joan has to make money fast tokeep from losing her home. She’s forced to resort to extreme measures. Aided by Sharon, and her two friends, Joan becomes the Madame of a do-it-yourself co-operative brothel… A brothel with no sex!
Best Documentary Feature Award – A Sister’s Call – USA. Directed by Kyle Tekiela, Rebecca Schaper. Call and Rebecca Richmond were born into Atlanta’s high society. In 1977, Call went missing. Twenty years later, he shows up on his sister Rebecca’s doorstep suffering from paranoid schizophrenia. Filmed over fourteen years, A Sister’s Call captures Rebecca’s brave journey of “bringing her brother back.” While helping Call, the family is forced to reconcile dark traumas and painful memories of their past. Call becomes the unlikely catalyst in this raw depiction of recovery.
Best Screenplay for a Feature Film Award – Below Zero – Canada. Written by Signe Olynyk. Below Zero is athriller with a ‘Fargo’ feel, based on a true story. Jack, a writer, goes to a remote location where his agent has arranged for him to be isolated in a meat locker for five days to focus on writing the ending to his book. While there, reality and imagination blur. Are people really dying a grizzly death by the way of the ‘butcher’ he wrote about? The screenwriter of the film locked herself in the meat freezer of an abandoned slaughterhouse where the film was ultimately shot.
Best Short Drama Award – Cherry Waves – USA. Directed and written by Carey Williams. A female underground street fighter faces her biggest challenge yet: deciding whether to continue living her life for her handicapped mother and dubious fight promoter, or finally living for herself and the woman she loves.
Best Short Comedy Award – The Hiccup – USA: Director and writer Matt Smukler. Two friends desperately trying to skip town find that an overheated radiator is the least of their problems.
U-T San Diego Award – Red Line – USA: World Premiere. Directed by Robert Kirbyson, written by Tara Stone. Moments after departing the Metro Station, commuters experience a sudden explosion. In a small pocket deep underground the few survivors discover the danger has just begun. The passengers also uncover a second bomb that has yet to detonate and begin to suspect that the terrorist has been trapped among them.
Chairman’s Award – Tony Tango – USA. Dale Strack, Chairman of the San Diego Film Foundation presented his choice for outstanding feature to the filmmakers of Tony Tango, directed by Manolo Celi. The comedy features Tony, a Latin danceinstructor with high cholesterol and an even higher belief in his own sex appeal.