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San Diego Film Festival Awards Announced

Story Of Luke’ WIns Best Feature

Above: "3,2,1... Frankie Go Boom" won Best Comedy at the 11th Annual San Diego Film Festival.

The 11th Annual San Diego Film Festival concluded this past weekend and the Festival just announced its awards.

Founded in 2001, The San Diego Film Festival says its mission is "to support the best in independent filmmaking while enhancing the diverse cultural landscape and economic vitality of San Diego." This was its first year under new leadership and here are the award winners. Awards comments for each film are from the Festival's press release.

Feature Narrative Competition Awards

Best Feature Film Award: "The Story of Luke" – USA – World Premiere. Directed and written by Alonso Mayo. Sheltered by his grandparents, Luke, a young man with autism, is thrust into a world that doesn't expect anything from him. But Luke is on a quest for a job and true love. And he isn't taking no for an answer.

Best Comedy Feature Award: "3, 2, 1... Frankie Go Boom" – USA. Directed and written by Jordan Roberts. Frank Bartlett has been tortured, embarrassed, and humiliated by his brother Bruce -- usually on film -- his entire life. Now that Bruce is finally off drugs and has turned his life around, things should be different. They are not.

Best Foreign Feature Award: "Best Little Whorehouse in Rochdale" – UK. Directed and written by Ian Vernon. After the untimely death of her husband, shy Joan has to make money fast to keep from losing her home. She's forced to resort to extreme measures. Aided by Sharon, and her two friends, Joan becomes the Madame of a do-it-yourself co-operative brothel... A brothel with no sex!

Best Documentary Feature Award: "A Sister’s Call" – USA. Directed by Kyle Tekiela, Rebecca Schaper. 
Call and Rebecca Richmond were born into Atlanta's high society. Call developed paranoid schizophrenia and walked out on his life. Overwhelmed by voices in his head, he wandered the country, drifting in and out of sanity. Amazingly, after twenty years of searching, Rebecca found Call alive, but not well... A Sister's Call chronicles Rebecca's mission to bring her brother back from the depths of homelessness and schizophrenia all while seeking a way to heal her self from the past.

Best Screenplay for a Feature Film Award: "Below Zero" Canada. Written by Signe Olynyk. Based on true events, BELOW ZERO is a thriller with a 'Fargo' feel. It is the story of 'Jack the Hack', a less than average, but once successful screenwriter who now faces writer's block. Desperate to meet a career-saving deadline and lock out the distractions of his troubled life, Jack arranges to be left alone and locked inside a meat cooler, with only vegetarian meals and his imagination to inspire him. The screenwriter of the film locked herself in the meat freezer of an abandoned slaughterhouse. The film was ultimately shot there.

Short Film Competition Awards

Best Short Drama Award: "Cherry Waves" – USA. Directed and written by Carey Williams. A female underground street fighter faces her biggest challenge yet: deciding whether to continue living her life for her handicapped mother and dubious fight promoter, or finally living for herself and the woman she loves.

Best Short Comedy Award: "The Hiccup" – USA: Director and writer Matt Smukler. Two friends desperately trying to skip town find that an overheated radiator is the least of their problems.

Special Awards

U-T San Diego Award: "Red Line" – USA: World Premiere. Directed by Robert Kirbyson, written by Tara Stone. Moments after departing the Metro Station, commuters experience a sudden explosion. In a small pocket deep underground the few survivors discover the danger has just begun. The passengers also uncover a second bomb that has yet to detonate and begin to suspect that the terrorist has been trapped among them.

Chairman’s Award: "Tony Tango" – USA. Dale Strack, Chairman of the San Diego Film Foundation presented his choice for outstanding feature to the filmmakers of Tony Tango, directed by Manolo Celi and screenplay by Manolo Celi and Bill Sommer. The comedy features Tony, a Latin dance instructor with high cholesterol and an even higher belief in his own sex appeal.

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