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Saturday, February 23 , 2019, 3:26 am | Fair 39º


Curtain Up on Film Festival Award-Winners

Santa Barbara International Film Festival (SBIFF), presented by UGG, has named the winners of the 33rd film festival during a ceremony held in honor of the winners.

Awards in all categories were announced, culminating in the coveted Audience Choice Award, which went to Mark Hayes’ Skid Row Marathon, SBIFF said.

The films were chosen by jury members Jan Bijvoet, Geoffrey Cowper, Mimi deGruy, Martin Gooch, Perry Lang, Jesus Lloveras, Marc Meyers, José Novoa, Artie Schmidt, Leslie Zemeckis, Anthony Zerbe and Arnette Zerbe.

Three awards were give for short films. The Bruce Corwin Award for Best Live Action Short Film went to Richard Van’s Audition. The Bruce Corwin Award for Best Animated Short Film went to Randall Christopher’s The Driver is Red. Best Documentary Short Film was awarded to Kyle Morrison’s Mott Haven.

Best Documentary Film Award went to Grant Korgan and Geoff Callan’s The Push.

The jury said, "We chose The Push as the best feature documentary because it was a riveting, well-told story with excellent camera work, and superb editing that kept us engaged the entire time."

Gjorce Stavreski’s Secret Ingredient (Iscelitel) is the recipient of the Jeffrey C. Barbakow Award for Best International Film.

“It’s outstanding direction and the terrific performances of all the cast make it hard to believe that it’s a directorial debut,” The jury said.
Molly McGlynn’s Mary Goes Round took home the Panavision Spirit Award for Independent Cinema.

“Aya Cash’s performance beautifully depicts the intense, painful descent into alcohol addiction and its consequences," the jury said.
The Nueva Vision Award for Spain/Latin America Cinema went to Pablo Solarz’s The Last Suit (El último traje) for its theme, mise-en-scene, and great performances.

The jury also had a special mention for Denny Brechner's, Alfonso Guerrero's and Marcos Hecht’s Get the Weed (Misión no oficial): "it was a great surprise, full of humor and made with great effort, that every single person in the audience enjoyed."
The Valhalla Award for Best Nordic Film was awarded to Antti-Jussi Annila’s The Eternal Road (Ikitie).

The jury said the film “told a fascinating story about an unknown period in history, featuring excellent performances, a gripping narrative with wonderful cinematography and production design.”

Sponsored by Santa Barbara and Tri-Counties ADL, the ADL Stand Up Award went to Talya Tibbon and Joshua Bennett’s Sky and Ground.

ADL said, “in furtherance of our mission ‘to secure justice and fair treatment for all,' ADL is pleased to stand up with Sky and Ground, a film that stands for respecting human dignity amidst fear and bigotry.”

Sponsored by Pacific Standard, the Social Justice Award for Documentary Film went to Ludovic Bonleux’s Guerrero.

The jury said, this is “an essential story about the fallout from a mass kidnapping in a historic Mexican city that takes its time making the viewer feel a region’s collective pain and determination.

"The people of this city seek not just justice from a corrupt government, but also answers as to what happened to their children. It’s a film everyone should see, and one we won’t soon forget.”

The Audience Choice Award, sponsored by the Santa Barbara Independent, went to Mark Hayes’ Skid Row Marathon.

On LA's Skid Row, a criminal court judge organizes a running club comprised of homeless, recovering alcoholics, and paroled men and women who seek to rediscover their sense of self-worth and dignity.

In the wake of the wildfires and deadly mudslides that have recently affected the local area, SBIFF each day highlighted a different organization making a positive impact on the environment and the victims, and uged festival attendees to support.

The nonprofits and organizations included United Way of Santa Barbara, Red Cross, Direct Relief, Foodbank of Santa Barbara County, Santa Barbara Foundation’s Community Disaster Relief Fund, Habitat for Humanity, Unity Shoppe, Salvation Army, Feed the Firefighters of Montecito, GoFundMe, Santa Barbara Humane Society, and Easy Lift Transportation.

— Ulisses Rivera for Santa Barbara International Film Festival.


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