The Slamdance Film Festival announced its winners tonight in 10 categories at the Sparky Awards’ ceremonies in the festival’s headquarters at the Silver Mine in Park City. The number of women filmmakers in this year’s festival was at an all time high with Lucia Small scoring wins in two categories for MY FATHER, THE GENIUS and short animation filmmakers Lisa Yu (“Vessel Wrestling”) and Atsuko Kubota (“Better Life”) for their films. The festival was also marked by a high number of stop-motion animation entries. The “Sparkies” were followed by the “Filmmaker Party” which celebrated filmmakers from all the alternative festivals in Park City. During the party (attended by approximately 2000 people), the Olympics ski thriller DOWNHILL racer starring Robert Redford was projected onto the snow on a neighboring mountain.
Slamdance Juror, director Penelope Spheeris (WAYNE’S WORLD, DECLINE OF WESTERN CIVILIZATION) described her experience at the festival as, “exhilirating — one that all mainstream filmmakers could use to get back in touch with the passion that made them filmmakers in the first place.”
The winners are as follows: ^ SPECIAL GRAND JURY HONOR: STONE READER (153 min., USA) directed by Mark Moskowitz. A non-fiction feature that follows its maker on a quest to find out why a critically acclaimed first novel and its author dropped out of sight.
JURY PRIZE FOR BEST FEATURE: THE HOLY LAND (96 min., USA) directed by Eitan Gorlin. A young rabbinical student goes to Israel in search of experience and falls for a prostitute. Award sponsored by JVC Professional.
GRAND JURY PRIZE FOR BEST DOCUMENTARY: MY FATHER, THE GENIUS (82 min., USA) directed by Lucia Small. The daughter of Glen Small, a visionary Los Angeles architect chronicles her father’s work and in the process gains insight into her estranged father as a human being.
GRAND JURY AWARDS FOR BEST SHORTS: ^ SHORT NARRATIVE: “Lurch” (20 min., Germany) directed by Boris Hars-Tschachotin. A man develops a special interest in the liquids used to preserve animals in bottles at Berlin’s Natural History Museum.
SHORT EXPERIMENTAL: “Vessel Wrestling” (13 min. USA) directed by Lisa Yu. Blood-sugar-sex-magic breeds in this sensuous claymation.
SHORT ANIMATION: “Better Life” (12 min., USA) directed by Atsuko Kubota. Vividly colored, multiple forms of animation comment on the routine of our daily lives.
AUDIENCE AWARD FOR BEST FEATURE: STONE READER directed by Mark Moskowitz. Sponsored by Maryland Film Office. See Special Grand Jury Prize above for description.
AUDIENCE AWARD FOR BEST SHORT: “The Hunger Artist” (16 min., USA) directed by Tom Gibbons. Stop-motion animation tells the Franz Kafka story about a performer whose art consists of denying himself nourishment.
KODAK VISION AWARD FOR BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY: LOUDER THAN BOMBS (92 min., Poland) directed by Prezemyslaw Wojcieszek. Cinematography by Jola Dyleewska, PSC. 21-year-old Marcin is forced to give his life a new meaning and direction after the death of his father and his girlfriend’s planned departure to the US. Sponsored by Kodak.
AWARD FOR BEST EDITING: MY FATHER, THE GENIUS (82 min., USA) directed by Lucia Small. Edited by Karen Schmeer (FAST, CHEAP AND OUT OF CONTROL). See above, BEST DOCUMENTARY for description. Award sponsored by Trakker Technologies.
SPIRIT OF SLAMDANCE AWARD: “Heaven’s Crossroad” (35 min.) directed by KimiTakesue. Little Roger Mead emerges from a cocoon of parental repression and finds the courage to share his unique gift with the world. A striking tavelogue through Vietnam.
GLOBAL ANARCHY AUDIENCE AWARD: “They Came to Attack Us” (7 min.) directed by Efram Potelle & Kyle Rankin. An unlikely hero has to have the world. Sponsored by Slamdance Entertainment.
SCREENPLAY WINNERS: The Slamdance Film Festival Screenplay Winners were previously announced.
Awards were also given for out in three categories for promotion of one’s film at the festival sponsored by The Onion. Rae McGrath won “Best Poster” for a visually arresting graphic for his film LEFTY-RIGHTY and Justin Adam & Mike Hawley for their film “Man With A DV Cam.” The latter was used Dziga Vertov’s artwork for “Man With A Movie Camera” for inspiration. “Most Original Promotional Item” went to Pamela Corkey for handing out 45’s (a vinyl record single) with music from her film EASY LISTENING with an honorable mention to Chris Strother for wrapping cans of Vienna sausages (eaten in the film) with information about her film “Candy Money.” “Best On The Street Promotion” went to Don Thomas who wore a handmade chicken suit all week to promote his stop-motion animated “Pedro + Tony?” – the story of an inter-special relationship between a dog and a chicken.
Winners were awarded their “Sparkies” (bronze statuettes shaped like sitting dogs) at the Closing Night Award Ceremony.
The award-winning films will screen at the Best of Slamdance on Friday, January 18th at the Silver Mine. Showtimes are as follows: ^ 10:00 AM: (Main Screening Room) THE HOLY LAND with “Hunger Artist” ^ 11:00 AM: (Lounge) MY FATHER, THE GENIUS ^ 12:30 PM: (Main Screening Room) LOUDER THAN BOMBS with “Lurch” ^ 2:00 PM: (Lounge) “Better Life”, They Came To Atttack Us” and “Heaven’s Crossroads” ^ 3:00 PM: (Main Screening Room) STONE READER
BREWVIES, Salt Lake CIty Schedule: Friday, January 18th: ^ 7:00 PM LEFTY RIGHT ^ 9:00 PM JESUS CHRIST VAMPIRE HUNTER
Best of Slamdance will continue on Saturday, January 19th at Brewvies. Showtimes are as follows: ^ 5:00 PM: LOUDER THAN BOMBS ^ 7:00 PM: THE MALLORY EFFECT ^ 9:00 PM: THE HOLY LAND
Screenings will take place in Los Angeles at the American Cinematheque at the Egyptian Theatre as follows: ^ Wed., Feb. 6 / 7:30 PM STONE READER (150 min.) ^ Thurs., Feb. 7 / 7:00 PM MY FATHER, THE GENIUS ( 20 min.) & “Lurch” (14 min.) ^ Thurs., Feb. 7 / 9:15 PM LOUDER THAN BOMBS (92 min.) & “Vessel Wrestling” (13 min.) Egyptian Theatre, 6712 Hollywood Blvd. Tickets $8 General admission.
The Platinum Sponsors for Slamdance 2002 are Kodak and JVC. Other sponsors include American Apparel, Avon Rentals, Brewvies, Burton Snowboards, Crest National, Deluxe Labs, DGA, Digital Film Group, Dos Equis, Film Festival Today, Jagermeister, Knitting Factory, Los Angeles Film School, Maryland Film Office, Movieola, Panavision, Kozak Vodka, Trakker Technologies, Video Equipment Rentals and X-96.
Highlights from the 2001 Slamdance Film Festival in Park City included over $70,000 in cash and prizes awarded to the winning films. Several films were picked up for distribution, Audience Award winner AMERICAN CHAI and Special Screening WENDIGO being the most recent. Almost every film went on to play at other international film festivals. The short film “Bean Cake” won the Palme D’Or for short film at the 2001 Cannes International Film Festival.
The 2000 Grand Jury Winner – Frank Novak’s GOOD HOUSEKEEPING – went on to screen in the prestigious Critics’ Week section of the Cannes Film Festival, where it was acquired for US distribution by Shooting Gallery in conjunction with Universal Studios. Alumni include MEMENTO director Christopher Nolan (’99 award-winner FOLLOWING); the Russo Brothers (’97 entry PIECES) and MONSTER’S BALL director Marc Forster (’96 Audience Award winner LOUNGERS). Participation in the Slamdance Film Festival helped to discover these filmmakers and to propel them to their next features into production.
The year-round Slamdance Film Festival’s $99 Specials program entered its 2nd year with screenings of nine new 5 minute films from Slamdance Alumni (who spent no more than $99 on production).
Get more info from the Official Slamdance Film Festival web site.
Check out’s FILM FESTIVAL ARCHIVES for more fest news!

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