Chicago International Film Festival Announces 2007 Award Winners

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Chicago International Film FestivalCHICAGO – The Chicago International Film Festival on Oct. 14 announced its 2007 award winners.

Mexico, China, Brazil, the United Kingdom and the United States took top honors in the festival’s 43rd iteration.

Chicago audiences selected from 102 feature films, 14 documentaries and 33 shorts and student films spanning 43 countries. Films showcased both well-known and promising new filmmakers.

The festival’s highest honor is the Gold Hugo, which was coined after the mythological god of discovery. When perusing the awardees below, notice “Chicago 10” and “America the Beautiful,” which I mentioned back on Sept. 19.

Feature Film Competition

The Gold Hugo went to “Silent Light” (Mexico).
The Silver Hugo jury prize went to “Tuya’s Marriage” (China).
The Silver Hugo for direction went to Roy Anderson for “You, The Living” (Sweden).
The Silver Hugo for best actor went to Sam Riley for “Control” (U.K.).
The Silver Hugo for best actress went to Yu Nan for “Tuya’s Marriage” (China).
The Silver Hugo for best screenplay went to Matt Greenhalgh for “Control” (U.K).
The silver plaque went to Chico Teixeira for “Alice’s House” (Brazil).

The main feature-film jury included Rudi Dolezal (Austria), Mike Goodridge (Great Britain), Udo Kier (Germany), Juri Menzel (Czech Republic), Claude Nouchi (France) and Maryse Sistach (Mexico).

New Director’s Competition

The Gold Hugo went to “In Memory of Myself” (Italy).
The Silver Hugo went to “Not By Chance” (Brazil).

The new director’s jury included Bill Stamets (U.S.), Elizabeth Donius (U.S.), Phillip Bergson (U.K.) and Ron Falzone (U.S.).

Documentary Competition

The Gold Hugo for best documentary went to “Taxi to the Dark Side” (U.S.).
The Silver Hugo went to “Chicago 10” (U.S.).
The gold plaque in direction went to “America the Beautiful” (U.S.).
The gold plaque in photography went to “4 Elements” (Netherlands).
The silver plaque special jury prize went to “Operation Filmmaker” (U.S.) and “A Walk Into the Sea” (U.S.).

The documentary jury included Clayton Brown (Northwestern University; Evanston, Ill.), Peter Gilbert (Kartemquin Films, Chicago) and Lisa Nesselson (Variety, Paris).

Short Film Competition

The Gold Hugo for best short film went to “Hesitation” (France/U.K.).

Narrative Short Film Competition

The Silver Hugo went to “Partus” (Denmark).
The gold plaque went to “27,000 Days” (U.S.).
The silver plaque went to “Train Town” (U.S.).

Animated Short Film Competition

The Silver Hugo went to “Everything Will Be Ok” (U.S.).
The gold plaque went to “Yours Truly” (U.K.).
The silver plaque went to “Sleeping Betty” (Canada).

Experimental Short Film Competition

The gold plaque went to “The Delaware Project” (Canada).

Documentary Short Film Competition

The gold plaque went to “The Ladies” (U.S.).

The short film jury included Steve Prokopy (Ain’t It Cool News, Chicago), Justine Nagan (Kartemquin Films, Chicago) and Mike Gibisser (filmmaker, Chicago).

The Chicago Award

The festival says:

As part of the Chicago International Film Festival’s special section on local filmmakers, the Chicago Award is presented to a Chicago or Illinois artist for the best feature film, short film or documentary.

The award applauds and celebrates the tireless efforts of regional talents who are devotees to the art of cinema and for their contributions to the medium.

This year’s Chicago Award went to “Terra Incognita” (U.S.).

The jury included Mike McNamara (executive director, Midwest Independent Film Festival, Chicago); Malik Bader (filmmaker; 2006 Chicago Award winner for “Street Thief”); and Annie Porter (associate producer, “At the Movies With Ebert & Roeper,” Chicago).

Audience Choice Award

This award will be announced immediately following the completion of the festival after Oct. 17.

Special Tributes

On Oct. 4, 2007, Roger Ebert was presented with a Gold Hugo lifetime achievement award. The entire 2007 festival was dedicated to the legendary film critic.

On Oct. 12, 2007, John Cusack was presented with a career achievement award preceding the Chicago premiere of his “Grace is Gone” film.

On Oct. 13, 2007, Jeffrey Wright was presented with a career achievement award during the festival’s 11th black perspectives tribute.

The 2007 festival concludes on Oct. 17. The 2008 festival will be held one week later from Oct. 9 to 22, 2008. editor-in-chief Adam Fendelman


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