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VA Film Festival Announces Audience, Program Award Winners - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

VA Film Festival Announces Audience, Program Award Winners

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The Virginia Film Festival is announcing the winners of its audience and programmers awards for this year.

“Philomena,” “Blue Ruin,” “Miracle Boy” and the Charlottesville-based women's arm wrestling movie, “Claw,” are among the films being honored.

This was a record-breaking year for the Virginia Film Festival. Box office sales totaled more than $120,000.

Virginia Film Festival Press Release

Charlottesville, VA – November 20, 2013 – The Virginia Film Festival has announced the winners of its Audience and Programmer’s Awards for the recently completed record-breaking 2013 VFF.

Earning top honors in the Audience Award category of Best Narrative Feature was Philomena, the Stephen Frears directed drama starring Dame Judi Dench as a woman who was forced to give up her son for adoption by her Irish Catholic community decades earlier and joins forces with a BBC reporter, played by Steve Coogan, on a mission to find him.

The Virginia Film Festival is presented by the University of Virginia.

The full list of 2013 VFF Audience Award winners includes:

Narrative Feature: Philomena (Stephen Frears)

Narrative Short: Awakened Eyes (Lainey Wood), also Runner Up in the VFF’s 2013 ACTION! High School Filmmaker Competition

Documentary Feature: CLAW (Brian Wimer and Billy Hunt)

Documentary Short: The Creative Proposition (Gordon Quinn)

“This year’s Audience Award winners really capture what the Virginia Film Festival is all about,” said Jody Kielbasa, Director of the VFF and Vice Provost for the Arts at the University of Virginia. “In Philomena you have a film that is generating incredible buzz on the festival circuit and significant awards-season attention. We are delighted with the response to CLAW, which we were proud to feature as our Centerpiece Film and which tells a fascinating story that begins in Charlottesville and has now spread internationally. Awakened Eyes is a great example of the Festival’s exceptional Outreach and Education efforts, and of the inspiration and opportunities offered to young filmmakers in our region. The Creative Proposition represents the critical role the arts play in life at the University through its fascinating look at the multi-year residency of dance visionary Bill T. Jones.”

This year, Kielbasa and VFF Programmer Wesley Harris once again saluted their own “Best of Fest” picks with Programmer’s Award winners, including:

Narrative Feature: Blue Ruin (Jeremy Saulnier)

Documentary Feature: A Will for the Woods (Amy Browne, Tony Hale, Jeremy Kaplan, Brian Wilson)

Narrative Short: Miracle Boy (Jason Brown)

Documentary Short: Ring People (Alfredo Covelli)

“Our Closing Night film Blue Ruin, which was the first major acquisition made at Cannes this year, is a perfect example of the stellar filmmaking coming out of Virginia today,” said VFF Programmer Wes Harris. “A Will for the Woods is a measured and lyrical exploration of the Green Burial Movement, helmed by a team of skilled and thoughtful young filmmakers. Adapted from the short story by Pinckney Benedict, Miracle Boy is a moody tale of one young boy risking his life for another, and a beautiful example of the Appalachian Gothic style. Italian director Alfredo Covelli, whose previous film screened at the VFF in 2011, returned with his challenging observational documentary Ring People, which he shot while living with a homeless community in Venice Beach, CA.”

For more information on the Virginia Film Festival, visit www.virginiafilmfestival.org.

Premiere sponsors for the 2013 Virginia Film Festival are The AV Company, Charlottesville Albemarle Convention and Visitors Bureau, The Joseph and Robert Cornell Memorial Foundation (Richard M. Adler and Joseph Erdman, Trustees), Flow Audi of Charlottesville, Regal Entertainment Group, and the Virginia Film Office.

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