The Feel Good Film Festival (FGFF) announces the award winners for its inaugural film festival with Jim Pasternak’s CERTIFIABLY JONATHAN as the winner of the Grand Jury Prize for Best Feel Good Feature Film and Michael Berry’s MIRA named as the winner of the Grand Jury Prize for Best Feel Good Short Film.
Audience Awards went to Christopher Watson’s THE RAINBOW TRIBE for Feel Good Feature and Berry’s MIRA for Feel Good Short. The Feel Good Cinematography Award went to Jim Orr’s work on Rocco DeVilliers’ THE FLYBOYS, and the Student Feel Good Film Awards went to Phil Hodges’ FIRST BASS (20-21 year old division) and Lisa Kowalski’s THE LAST CHERRY (19 year old and under division). The IndieFlix award went to Paul Germain’s SPEEDY DELIVERY (which brought with it a $1000 cash prize.)
Noah Edelson’s “Hear, Boy!” won the Feel Good Screenplay Competition and Alyssa Suede won the Feel Good Original Song Competition for her song, “Falling From Mars.”
Pasternak was presented with a prize package of $14,000 ($4000 in goods and services from Hollywood Rentals, $4000 in goods and services from Dalsa cameras, $2500 in goods and services from Panther Dollies and Cranes, $2500 in film stock from Fujifilm, and $1000 in unrestricted cash from FGFF) as the winner of the Best Feel Good Feature Length Film.
Berry received a prize package of $4000 ($1000 in unrestricted cash from FGFF, and $1000 in goods and services from Panther Dollies and Cranes, Hollywood Rentals, and Dalsa cameras) for winning the Best Feel Good Short Film.
$2500 in goods and services from Panther Dollies and Cranes was given to Orr along with his award for Best Feel Good Cinematography, and unrestricted cash prizes from FGFF went to Edelson and Campbell for the Best Feel Good Screenplay ($1000) and Best Feel Good Original Song ($500), respectively.
Hodges and Kowalski received four-week complimentary tuition packages at the New York Film Academy as the winners of the Feel Good Student Film category.
Kristen Ridgway, FGFF Director, said, “Our first year exceeded everyone’s most hopeful expectations from the number of great films we were able to program, the participation of the filmmakers, sponsors and vendors, to the tremendous audience support we had over the course of the weekend. We obviously tapped into a serious need for the indie film community and the people who love watching indie films to deliver something dedicated toward the lighter and more uplifting side of filmmaking. And we look very forward to doing that for years to come.”
The festival featured 53 films, including 15 features, 31 shorts, and 7 student films. Along with the films offered throughout the festival, Rainn Wilson served as host for the Opening Night Gala, an original screenplay competition, and the festival featured innovations such as its Original Song Competition with performances by the nominated artists themselves in the Egyptian Theater Courtyard, and an outdoor bazaar highlighted by “green” and health-oriented vendors. The festival also presented a panel discussion on issues facing the creators of family themed entertainment featuring Tom Kenny (“SpongeBob SquarePants”), Paul Tibbitt (Exec Prod “SpongeBob SquarePants”), Butch Hartman (Creator “Fairly Odd Parents”), Scott Fellows ( before the weekend concluded Sunday evening with a Closing Night Awards Gala hosted by Tom Kenny (“Sponge Bob Square Pants”) concluding with a Tribute to film and comedy legend, Jonathan Winters.
While Winters was not able to attend the ceremony himself, Karen and Kat Kramer (the widow and daughter of director Stanley Kramer and long time friends of Winters – who had starred in Kramer’s IT’S A MAD, MAD, MAD MAD WORLD) accepted on Winters’ behalf before CERTIFIABLY JONATHAN director Pasternak connected Winters on a miked cell phone so he could thank the FGFF for the award and introduce the film to the appreciative audience.
BEST FEEL GOOD FEATURE FILM: CERTIFIABLY JONATHAN
Dir: Jim Pasternak
Prod: Richard Marshall
Cast: Jonathan Winters, Robin Williams, Jimmy Kimmel, Sarah Silverman, Nora Dunn, Kevin Dunn, Howie Mandel, Gary Owens
BEST FEEL GOOD SHORT FILM: MIRA
Dir: Michael Berry
Prod: Michael Butler Murray, Louis Moulinet
BEST FEEL GOOD CINEMATOGRAPHY: Jim Orr (for THE FLYBOYS)
FEEL GOOD FEATURE: THE RAINBOW TRIBE
Dir: Christopher Watson
Prod: Dan Frisch, Philip Waley, Ryan Westheimer
Cast: David James Elliott
FEEL GOOD SHORT: MIRA
Dir: Michael Berry
Prod: Michael Butler Murray, Louis Moulinet
FEEL GOOD STUDENT AWARDS:
20-21 YEAR OLD DIVISION: FIRST BASS
Dir: Philip Hodges
19 YEAR OLD AND UNDER DIVISION: THE LAST CHERRY
Dir: Lisa Kowalski
FEEL GOOD ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY AWARD:
Writer: Noah Edelson
FEEL GOOD ORIGINAL SONG AWARD:
“Falling from Mars”
Music & Lyrics: Alyssa Campbell
2008 FGFF JURY MEMBERS
FEATURE FILM JURY includes:
Benaroya is currently in Feature Development at Fox Atomic. She joined FOX in 2004 where she has worked on such films as DODGEBALL and BORAT!
Slobin has spent the last several years at Vivendi Entertainment, a full service film distributor (a unit of the Universal Music Group), where ha has spent time in both the Acquisitions and Sales departments.
Yu is currently the V.P. of Acquisitions for PorchLight Entertainment – a worldwide distributor recognized for family entertainment. He was the Head of West Coast Operations for Cinemavault Releasing, and began his career at paramount Classics and Alliance Atlantis in Marketing and International Sales.
SHORT FILM JURY includes:
Nominated by the International Cinematographers Guild Publicists for a 2008 Press Award, Mantz ins the resident Film Critic and Film Segment Producer for Access Hollywood. He has served as a panelist on the popular FX network show, The New Movie Show with Chris Gore and as a guest correspondent on Bravo’s two-part series 30 Even Scarier Movie Moments.
Taylor is currently Senior Vice President and General Manager of Nickelodeon Animation Studio. He has served as Vice President of Animation Production for Columbia/TriStar Television and worked in Animation at Jetlag productions, Alchemy and DIC Animation City.
ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY JURY includes:
Bredeweg and his writing/producing partner Peter Paige recently sold their feature ‘Repeat After Me” to Michael Stipe’s Single Cell Pictures, as well as their one-hour scripted pilot “The Katy May Show” to E!. They are currently at work on a feature film bio-pic based on the life of Eva Cassidy with Amy Redford set to direct. Bredeweg also wrote “Alyx” a one-hour pilot for ABC (with Madonna on board as Exec Prod).
Chaidez has 20 years of industry writing and producing experience on shows such as “Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles,” “Heroes,” and “Judging Amy.” She was listed on Variety’s top 20 most influential Latina women in Hollywood.
Michaeli is currently on the writing staff of “SpongeBob Squarepants.” Previously, he served as a consultant on “South Park.”
ORIGINAL SONG JURY includes:
Aramian has scored hundreds of pieces for film, television, video games and commercials. He recently completed a two-year stint as Operations manager of Soundelux Design Music Group. He is currently at work on a three-hour special for the Discovery Channel.
Block is the lead singer of the platinum-selling band, Sister Hazel. The band has sold over two million albums and co-founded the Rock Boat, the world’s largest floating music festival. Their most recent album, “Before The Amplifiers, Live Acoustic” was released in June. Ken also plans to release a solo album later this year.
Kehew is a producer, engineer and musician. He has produced many records, including Fiona Apple’s “Extraordinary Machine” and has done mixing for The Ramones, Fleetwood Mac, Stone Temple Pilots and Black Sabbath. Live, Brian worked with The Who for six years, including playing keyboards for them on their 2006/2007 U.S. tour. He is also co-author of the popular book, Recording the Beatles.