Sundance Awards Restrepo, Winter's Bone Top Jury Prizes
The big jury prize winners of this year's Sundance Film Festival were announced at a ceremony last night emceed by David Hyde Pierce. U.S. Dramatic Competition honors went to Debra Granik's Winter's Bone, an adaptation of the Daniel Woodrell novel about a girl forced to care for her poverty-stricken family in the Ozark mountains after her meth-making father disappears. (Good news: it was picked up yesterday by Roadside Attractions, who plan a summer release.)
On the non-fiction side, Restrepo, Sebastian Junger and Tim Hetherington's gripping year-long look at life among a U.S. platoon embedded in Afghanistan, took the top U.S. Documentary Competition jury prize. (Our interview with the filmmakers is here.) Josh Radnor's Happythankyoumoreplease and Davis Guggenheim's Waiting for Superman took the two U.S. competition audience awards.
In the World Cinema categories, Animal Kingdom, David Michôd bleak and stylish drama about a Melbourne crime family, took the top dramatic award, and The Red Chapel, about a prank comedy team's misadventures abroad as guests of North Korea, took the documentary prize. Javier Fuentes-Leon's Contracorriente, a love triangle with gay themes set in a Peruvian fishing village, and Waste Land, a doc about a photographer who captures landfill-combing harvesters living in Brazil, took the audience awards.
Eric Mendelsohn and Leon Gast took the U.S. directing awards for 3 Backyards and Smash His Camera, respectively, while Southern District director Juan Carlos Valdivia and Space Tourists director Christian Frei took the world directing honors. Southern District also took a Waldo Salt Award.
There were several special jury prizes. One went to Sympathy for Delicious, Mark Ruffalo's directorial debut -- surprising, as it received overwhelmingly negative buzz throughout the week. Josh Fox's doc GasLand and Rob Lemkin and Thet Sambath's Enemies of the People also took special prizes. Tatiana Maslany won best breakout performance, World Cinema category, for her role a teen in Canada's Grown Up Movie Star. Is she the next Ellen Page?
Cinematography awards went to Obselidia, The Oath, The Man Next Door and His and Hers. Editing awards went to Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work and A Film Unfinished. The new Next category, for films made under $50k, went to Todd and Brad Barnes' Homewrecker -- a feat made all the more impressive by the fact that it was voted on by a jury of their competitors.
The juries were: Russell Banks, Jason Kliot, Karyn Kusama, Parker Posey and Robert Yeoman (U.S. dramatic); Greg Barker, Dayna Goldfine, Nancy Miller, Morgan Spurlock and Ondi Timoner (U.S. documentary); Alison Maclean, Lisa Schwarzbaum and Sigurjon "Joni" Sighvatsson (World Cinema dramatic); Jennifer Baichwal, Jeffrey Brown and Asako Fujioka (World Cinema documentary); Sterlin Harjo, Brent Hoff and Christine Vachon (shorts); and Peter Galison, Darcy Kelley, Joe Palca, Paul Sereno and Marianna Palka (Alfred P. Sloan).