Slog News & Arts

Line Out

Music & Nightlife

« Today The Stranger Suggests | Bart Sher... »

Sunday, June 15, 2008

SIFF 2008: Award Winners

posted by on June 15 at 12:36 PM

The press release:

SIFF 2008 New American Cinema Competition

Grand Jury Prize:
Em, directed by Tony Barbieri (USA)
Jury Statement: “In Em, writer-director Tony Barbieri tackles the timely and original subject of love and mental illness, with the help of his two excellent leads, Stef Willen and Nathan Wetherington. It’s a sweet, sad, scary movie that feels completely contemporary.”

Special Jury Prize:
Jury Statement: “The Special Jury Prize is awarded to The Bluetooth Virgin and writer-director Russell Brown for his fresh and squirmy script.”

The New American Cinema jury was comprised of: Rajendra Roy, Chief Curator, Film Department at MoMA; David Schmader, associate editor at The Stranger; and Kyle Thorpe, Vice President of Publicity at Focus Features.

SIFF 2008 New Directors Showcase Competition

Grand Jury Prize:
Everything Is Fine, directed by Yves-Christian Fournier (Canada)
Jury Statement: “The New Directors Showcase Prize for director of a first or second feature goes to Yves-Christian Fournier from Quebec, Canada, and his film Everything Is Fine, for its skillful avoidance of the nihilistic clichés in its treatment of contemporary youth. The jury would also like to commend the outstanding performance of Marie Turgeon in the role of the mother.”

Special Jury Prize:
Mermaid, directed by Anna Melikyan (Russia)
Jury Statement: “The jury would also like to award a special mention to Mermaid by Anna Melikyan from Russia for its entertaining portrait of Russia and its growing pains as it transitions into a capitalist society.”

The New Directors Showcase jury was comprised of: Frederic Boyer, programmer for Director’s Fortnight, Cannes Film Festival; Oliver Mahrdt, president of Hanns Wolters International, and East Coast representative of German Films; and Charles Taylor, film critic for the Newark Star-Ledger and Bloomberg News.

SIFF 2008 Documentary Competition

Grand Jury Prize:
Derek, directed by Isaac Julien (UK)
Jury Statement: “The Grand Jury Prize is awarded to Isaac Julien’s Derek for the strength of both the subject and the filmmaking.”

Documentary Competition Special Jury Prizes:
Jury Statements:
Combalion, directed by Raphaël Mathié (France), “…for its artistic integrity and visually arresting composition.”
Accelerating America, directed by Timothy Hotchner (USA), “…for capturing the inspiration of the subject and the humanistic heart of the film.”

The Documentary jury was comprised of: Ken Eisen, president of Shadow Distribution; Julie Goldman, founding partner of Cactus Three; and Steven Raphael, founder of Required Viewing.

SIFF 2008 Short Film Jury Awards

SIFF 2008 Grand Jury Short Film Award winners receive a $2,500 cash prize, a hand-made glass creation by artist James Mongrain, Movie Magic Screenwriter software, a DVD replication prize package from Discmakers, and an annual subscription to FilmTracker from Baseline Studio Systems.

Documentary Grand Jury Prize:
“Self Portrait With Cows Going Home” and Other Works: A Portrait of Sylvia Plachy, directed by Rebecca Dreyfus, USA

Documentary Special Jury Prize:
The Ladies, directed by Christina Voros, USA

Animation Grand Jury Prize:
The Pearce Sisters, directed by Luis Cook, UK

Animation Special Jury Prize:
Home, directed by Kim Slate, USA

Narrative Grand Jury Prize:
Rewind, directed by Atul Taishete, India

Narrative Special Jury Prizes:
Walnut, directed by Amy Gebhardt, Australia
Dog Altogether, directed by Paddy Considine, UK
A Mate, directed by Teemu Nikki, Finland
New Boy, directed by Steph Green, Ireland

Honorable Mentions for Inventive Filmmaking:
Introduction to Lucid Dreaming, directed by John Grigsby, USA
On the Assassination of the President, directed by Adam Keker, USA

The Short Film jury was comprised of: Scilla Andreen, co-founder of IndieFlix; Seattle filmmaker Douglas Horn, winner of the 2006 Golden Space Needle for Best Short Film; and Jeff Shannon, film critic for the Seattle Times and P-I.

SIFF 2008 FutureWave Jury Award

SIFF 2008 FutureWave WaveMaker Award winner receives a $2,500 cash prize.

Grand Jury Prize (WaveMaker Award):
Disorder, directed by Rose McAleese

Honorable Mentions:
4th Floor, directed by Misami Kubo, “…for excellence in visual storytelling.”
Driving to the New Age: American Automobiles and You, directed by Meng Mao, Eli Shalcross, Charlie Shelton, and Matt Yaggy, “…for delivering a serious message through outstanding use of satire.”
New Perspective, directed by Dave Riff, “…for clarity of vision.”

The FutureWave jury was comprised of the participants in the 2008 Fly Filmmaking challenge: Cheryl Slean, Megan Griffiths, Rob Cunningham, Andy McCone and Joe Shapiro.

SIFF and IndieFlix 2008 MyFestival Winners

SIFF and IndieFlix MyFestival Feature Film winner receives a $1,500 cash prize; Short Film winner receives a $500 cash prize.

SIFF Official Selection and MyFestival Feature Film Winner:
Perfect Sport, directed by Anthony O’Brien

SIFF Official Selection and MyFestival Short Film Winner:
Robbie’s Withdrawal, directed by John Burish

MyFestival Special Recognition Awards:
Eternal City, directed by Jason Goodman
Hot Wind: America’s Fallout Casualties, directed by Kirsten Alaqidy


SIFF 2008 Golden Space Needle Award winners receive a hand-made glass creation by artist James Mongrain. Golden Space Needle Award Best Short Film winner receives $1,000 of Color Negative Motion Picture Film from the Eastman Kodak Company Entertainment Imaging Division, and an Apple Intel 15” Laptop Computer loaded with the Final Cut Pro Suite of products from IrisInk and The Mac Store.

Best Film Golden Space Needle Award:
Cherry Blossoms: Hanami, directed by Doris Dörrie (Germany)

The remaining top ten audience favorites (in order)
Frozen River, directed by Courtney Hunt (USA)
Fugitive Pieces, directed by Jeremy Podeswa (Canada)
Captain Abu Raed, directed by Amin Matalqa (Jordan)
The Drummer, directed by Kenneth Bi (Hong Kong)
Summer Heat, directed by Monique van de Ven (the Netherlands)
Letting Go of God, directed by Julia Sweeney (USA)
Late Bloomers, directed by Bettina Oberli (Switzerland)
Bliss, directed by Abdullah Oguz (Turkey)
Michou d’Auber, directed by Thomas Gilou (France)

Best Documentary Golden Space Needle Award:
The Wrecking Crew, directed by Denny Tedesco (USA)

The remaining top ten audience favorites (in order)
Great Speeches From a Dying World, directed by Linas Phillips (USA)
Man on Wire, directed by James Marsh (UK)
Accelerating America, directed by Timothy Hotchner (USA)
Creative Nature, directed by John Andres (USA)
Emmanuel Jal: War Child, directed by C. Karim Chrobog (USA)
Trouble the Water, directed by Carl Deal and Tia Lessin (USA)
Stranded: I’ve Come From a Plane that Crashed in the Mountains, directed by Gonzalo Arijon (France)
Good Food, directed by Melissa Young and Mark Dworkin (USA)
They Killed Sister Dorothy, directed by Daniel Junge (USA)

Best Director Golden Space Needle Award:
Amin Matalqa, for Captain Abu Raed (Jordan)

The remaining top five audience favorites (in order)
Courtney Hunt, for Frozen River (USA)
Nina Paley, for Sita Sings the Blues (USA)
Dorota Kedzierzawska, for Time to Die (Poland)
Nic Balthazar, for Ben X (Belgium)

Best Actor Golden Space Needle Award:
Alan Rickman, for Bottle Shock (USA)

The remaining top five audience favorites (in order)
Nadim Sawalha, for Captain Abu Raed (Jordan)
Andrew Garfield, for Boy A (UK)
Zdenerk Sverák, for Empties (Czech Republic)
Greg Timmermans, for Ben X (Belgium)

Best Actress Golden Space Needle Award:
Jessica Chastain, for Jolene (USA)

The remaining top five audience favorites (in order)
Catinca Untaru, for The Fall (USA)
Melissa Leo, for Frozen River (USA)
Danuta Szaflarska, for Time to Die (Poland)
Melanie Diaz, for American Son (USA)

Best Short Film Golden Space Needle Award:
Felix, directed by Andreas Utta (Germany)

The remaining top five audience favorites (in order)
Sleeping Betty, directed by Claude Cloutier (Canada)
Bailey-Boushay House: A Living History, directed by Terence Brown (USA)
Zoologic, directed by Nicole Mitchell (USA)
Spider, directed by Nash Edgerton (Australia)

Lena Sharpe Award:
Frozen River, director Courtney Hunt (USA)
This award is given to the film by a woman director that receives the most votes from the public.

OK, so Cherry Blossoms was the actual audience award winner—Frozen River was just a runner-up. But since Cherry Blossoms was already scheduled to screen today (albeit during the awards ceremony), SIFF is screening Frozen River tonight in the narrative TBD slot (7 pm at SIFF Cinema).

Good job not picking anything too embarrassing, guys! But no acting prize for Haifsia Herzi (The Secret of the Grain)? Shame. I suppose a César is worth more, anyway.

RSS icon Comments


Please - stop spreading SIFF lists.

Posted by PC | June 15, 2008 1:19 PM

Kelly O and Ari Spool give Bruce Banner can of Rize, Bruce Banner drink Rize, freak out, Hulk out, BRUCE BANNER BECOME HULK!

And no, I'm not letting it go.

Posted by The Incredible Sulk | June 15, 2008 3:04 PM

Does this mean SIFF is over? For reals? 'Cause I'm all SIFFed out...enough.

Posted by j4zz3rgrl | June 15, 2008 6:41 PM

Haifsia Herzi is the French-Arab Ellen Page, completely in the opposite direction. What a total, instant star, a goddess, a superhero. 'The Secret of the Grain' is love-it or hate-it, but I am pretty certain that if it were just the love-its it would have won multiple categories. Brilliant, and the best ending I have seen in years.

Posted by Grant Cogswell | June 15, 2008 6:59 PM

Not one single visitor to this site will read even 15% of that list. Seriously. It's just gratuitous listing. It's not needed.

Posted by Bob | June 15, 2008 8:39 PM

I successfully went from being a full series passholder in past seasons to not seeing any siff films this year. Sure, I missed some good stuff, but I was able to save $450+. Woo!

Posted by stinkbug | June 15, 2008 8:41 PM

Since there's no open threading on the Slog, I must step off the topic briefly to comment on how interesting it is to me that there are ZERO posts or serious references (or any I could find) to Father's Day for the last three days whereas on Mother's Day you all had at least FOUR.

Now I believe most male homosexuality is probably biologically determined and not the result of Freudian notions of overinvolved controlling yet emotionally cold and cruel mothers with weak, distanced and ineffectual fathers.

But hmmm. And the problem with Freud remains nobody's ever disproved any of him.

Posted by Bob | June 15, 2008 8:55 PM

When Frued stated that, "sometimes a cigar is just a cigar," he sort of covered all of his bases.

Posted by t | June 15, 2008 9:25 PM

i, for one, appreciate you posting these winners. it's funny how people complain about what you guys post, as if they're the ones paying for the bandwidth or setting the editorial direction. would you guys have rather she posted an incomplete, meandering essay or something? reposting the press release was a fine thing to do.

Posted by traeden | June 15, 2008 10:11 PM

I would have rather read a lovely posting about Fathers and how completely bitchin they are to the world and how NONE of us would even be alive if we didn't have a father and how even though mothers can make us wince and whimper like little babies at the mere hint of disapproval in their voices over really just about anything, it's bad dads that gave us the brilliant tortured poetic angst of Kurt Cobain and good dads that gave us Tim Russert!

Fuck stupid movie lists on Father's Day, how about a little love for the old man?

Posted by Bob | June 15, 2008 10:16 PM

@6 - I went from only watching 17 films last year to seeing around 60 this year - from an initial list of 122 Must See films.

The award winners well deserved it - especially Cherry Blossoms - Hanami, Captain Abu Raed, and Sita Sings The Blues.

Sorry I didn't post earlier today - having spent it watching some fine ending day films.

Posted by Will in Seattle | June 15, 2008 10:44 PM

I saw the winners of the new american cinema and new directors showcase awards and it seems like the juries made some pretty good choices. The SIFF blurb for Em really didn't do the film justice; I was glad that I checked it out after hearing that it won the prize.

Posted by josh | June 15, 2008 10:46 PM

Unfortunately not one of the 5 I saw, including 3 I thought were rather good, made any of these lists... no Towelhead? No Visioneers?

Posted by K | June 18, 2008 8:48 AM

Comments Closed

Comments are closed on this post.