Newport Beach Film Fest announces winners
Newport Film Fest announces winners
The sun has set on the 2013 Newport Beach Film Festival.
The 14th annual gathering concluded Thursday night with record-matching attendance, the West Coast premiere of "The Way, Way Back," and a festive closing-night party. Award winners chosen by a jury and audience members were announced Friday.
"Fly Me to the Moon (Un Plan Parfait)" a French romantic comedy starring Diane Kruger, was the big winner, receiving jury awards for best feature film, actress (Kruger), director (Pascal Chaumeil), and screenplay (Laurent Zeitoun and Yoann Gromb).
Sam Rockwell, who starred in "A Single Shot" and "The Way, Way Back," won the jury award for best actor, and Mihai Malaimaire, Jr. won the jury award for best cinematographer.
The jury award for best feature documentary went to "Terms and Conditions May Apply," which explores the detailed contracts people unknowingly agree to when they click "yes" on websites and computer apps.
Jury awards went to "Open Heart" for best short documentary, "Flamingo Pride" for best short animated film, and "Emily" for best narrative short.
More than 53,000 people attended this year's festival, matching a record set last year. The festival screened more than 350 films from 50 countries during its eight-day run, about a 25 percent decrease from last year's 470 films. Organizers also pulled back significantly on presenting films before 5 p.m. on weekdays.
However, all of the Friday and Saturday night "spotlight" films sold out, and a number of the foreign spotlights sold out as well, programmers said. Plus, the festival presented a record number of repeat screenings for the popular films.
"I think this is the strongest lineup of films and events in our history," said Gregg Schwenk, CEO and executive director of the Newport Beach Film Festival. "One of the things that's been most exciting to me is the large number of industry and distributor presence here at the festival, and the feedback we've received from them about the process of film curating by Newport is truly extraordinary,"
This year's budget is between $1 million and $1.2 million, and Schwenk said all signs indicate that the fest will break even once all the figures are calculated.
Audience award winners were also announced Friday: "The Way, Way Back" was best U.S. feature; "Cinco de Mayo: The Battle" was best foreign feature; "How to Make Money Selling Drugs" was best documentary; "Wiener Dog Nationals" won best family feature; "Discovering Mavericks" won for best action-sports feature; and "16 Acres" won in the art, architecture and design category.
Outstanding achievement in filmmaking honors went to "Broadway Idiot," "The O'Briens," "Drift," "The Golden Scallop" and "In Security" (comedy). For acting, outstanding achievement awards went to "Welcome to the Jungle" (ensemble cast), Michael Shannon of "The Iceman," Onata Aprile of "What Maisie Knew," and Jericho Rosales of "Breakaway (Alagwa)."
Outstanding achievement in directing went to Jocelyn Towne of "I Am I." "Wiener Dog Nationals" won an outstanding achievement award for the family film category. In the action sports category, "Birdmen: The Original Dream of Flight" and "The Signal Hill Speed Run" won outstanding achievement awards.
"Let's Roll" and "Walking the Camino: Six Ways to Santiago" won honors for outstanding achievement in documentary filmmaking. "Critical Mass" nabbed an environmental award, "B-Side" got an outstanding achievement prize in the music category, and "Love, Marilyn" won for editing.
"If You Build It" was recognized for outstanding achievement in the art, architecture and design category.
The following short films received outstanding achievement awards: "Josephine and the Roach," "Silk" and "Strings."
The 2014 Newport Beach Film Festival is tentatively scheduled for the end of April to the beginning of May. Next year will be the fest's 15th anniversary, and organizers aim to make the gathering "exceptionally special," Schwenk said.
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