AFIFEST presented by Audi announced 2013 winners

LOS ANGELES, CA, November 14 – AFI FEST 2013 presented by Audi today announced the features and short films receiving this year's Audience and Jury Awards at a brunch sponsored by KIND.

THE ROCKET, an Australian film; THE SELFISH GIANT, made in the UK; WE GOTTA GET OUT OF THIS PLACE, an American independent film directed by Zeke Hawkins (AFI Class of 2009) and Simon Hawkins; and B FOR BOY, a Nigerian film, received Audience Awards. Grand Jury Awards were presented to BUTTER LAMP, in the Live Action Short category, and THE PLACES WHERE WE LIVED, in the Animated Short category. Special Jury Award winners were BALCONY and SYNDROMEDA.

"Panavision is proud to be a sponsor of the AFI Fest and to present a $60,000 rental grant to the winner of the American Independence Section, Audience Award for WE GOTTA GET OUT OF THIS PLACE," said Marketing Executive Mike Carter of Panavision Hollyood. "Panavision has always been dedicated in helping filmmakers get their story onto the screen and we hope that this grant helps the winner do just that."

Festival Director Jacqueline Lyanga saluted the winning filmmakers. "This year, some extraordinary new artists have burst onto the scene, and we hope that these awards from the audience and the jury will enable their films to reach a wider audience. We hope that the enthusiasm and excitement that our audiences have had for all of the films that we've shown this past week – foreign, American, Independent, experimental, short and documentary – continues and spreads," said Lyanga.

"At the end of an incredible eight days of hosting so many wonderful filmmakers from around the world, the Awards Ceremony is an opportunity to acknowledge the films that struck a chord with both our audiences and our jury," added Lane Kneedler, Associate Director of Programming, AFI FEST. "We also congratulate all of our filmmakers for sharing their stories."
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences recognizes AFI FEST Grand Jury Award winners in the Live Action and Animated Shorts categories as qualifiers for the annual Academy Awards® Short Film category. The Shorts jury featured Alejandro De Leon
(producer), Kitao Sakurai (filmmaker), Jordan Vogt-Roberts (filmmaker) and Heidi Zwicker (shorts programmer).

JURY COMMENT: "Short films have limitless potential to be evocative and effecting regardless of technical merits or length. The best short films can only exist as short films, and are incredibly difficult to execute in a way that simultaneously feels satisfying and unique. AFI Fest has done a truly remarkable job curating a line up of films that represent inspiring and unique voices that play to the specific strengths of the medium. The shorts that we chose spoke deeply to us and represent what we feel to be the best of short filmmaking."

Live Action Short Film: BUTTER LAMP. JURY COMMENT: "The Grand Jury prize for Live Auction caught us by surprise with its spellbinding and poetic simplicity. Traversing hundreds of miles of geography and spanning generations of time without leaving one central location, this film functions as a profound mediation on the practice and effects of image making."

Animated Short: THE PLACES WHERE WE LIVED. JURY COMMENT: "This was an exceptionally difficult choice to make. While many of the animations showcase incredible depth and artistry, one film shined – through its idiosyncratic use of multiple mediums and humor to provide insight into the filmmaker's heart."

The New Auteurs section highlights first and second-time feature film directors from around the world. This year's New Auteurs jury featured Peter Debruge (Variety), Karina Longworth (author and critic) and Amy Nicholson (LA Weekly). The Shorts jury features Alejandro De Leon (producer), Kitao Sakurai (filmmaker), Jordan Vogt-Roberts (filmmaker) and Heidi Zwicker (shorts programmer).

NOTHING BAD CAN HAPPEN. JURY COMMENT: "The true story of a homeless Christian teenager adopted by an abusive family who tests his ability to turn the other cheek. Many, many bad things happen. But the blessing is discovering first-time filmmaker Katrin Gebbe and her incredible ensemble who have braved their own tests – boos and walkouts, nothing too bloody – in order to bring us this powerful movie and faith and sacrifice."

World Cinema: THE ROCKET. DIR Kim Mordaunt. Australia.
New Auteurs: THE SELFISH GIANT. DIR Clio Barnard. UK.
American Independents: (award accompanied by a $60,000 grant from Panavision) WE GOTTA GET OUT OF THIS PLACE. DIR Zeke Hawkins, Simon Hawkins. USA.
Breakthrough (award accompanied by a $5,000 cash prize): B FOR BOY. DIR Chika Anadu. Nigeria.