Slamdance closes 2016 festival with boisterous awards ceremony
Slamdance went quackers over a documentary about a duck stamp competition Thursday night.
During it’s rambunctious awards ceremony held at Treasure Mountain Inn, Brian Golden Davis’ "The Million Dollar Duck" pulled in the Audience Award for Documentary Feature and the Jury Award for Documentary Feature.
"When you start making a film about people who paint ducks and try to get that on a stamp, the first thing that runs through your mind is that audiences might not like it," Davis said when he accepted the Audience Award. "When I saw the first cut of the film, I was pretty much right. So it’s great to see the film come from that and get it to where the film is now and that audiences are somehow liking it."
The ceremony, which was emceed by Slamdance co-founder Dan Mirvish, started out with comments from two other co-founders Paul Rachman and Peter Baxter.
"All the filmmakers here tonight, whether you win or lose, are joining a great group of filmmakers," Rachman said to the standing-room-only crowd. "Congratulations to you all."
Baxter took the microphone and reiterated Rachman’s sentiment.
"You all are part of the family," Baxter said. "It’s a dysfunctional one, but it’s been around for a long time."
Joking aside, Baxter congratulated the filmmakers and said every film selected for this year’s festival showed the power of independent film.
"In many ways, you have changed our lives and enriched [them] and we really appreciate that," he said. "Thank you very much for making it great."
Juries of industry experts and filmmakers decided which films in the Narrative Feature, Documentary Feature and Short Film categories would win the awards, known as "The Sparkys."
Also handed out were Audience Awards and the Spirit of Slamdance, an award given by filmmakers to the filmmaker who best embodies the spirit of the Festival, and additional sponsored awards included this year’s Digital Bolex Fearless Filmmaking Grand Prize.
The feature competition films in the Documentary and Narrative Programs are limited to first-time filmmakers working with production budgets of less than $1 million.
The awards are as follows:
JURY AWARDS- NARRATIVE
Jury comprised of Julie La’Bassiere, Erik Jambor and Damon Russell.
JURY AWARDS DOCUMENTARY
Jury comprised of Skizz Cyzyk, Vanessa Hope and Steve Yu.
JURY AWARDS – SHORT FILMS
Jury comprised of Steve Montal, Ina Pira and Mark Shapiro.
The below Short Film winners were selected by a jury comprised of Wally Chung, Dekker Dreyer and Jack Sargeant.
The Digital Bolex Fearless Filmmaking awards jury was comprised of Jeremy Osbern, Misti Boland, Lindsey Haun, Michael Dunaway, Ben Kasulke, Leah Shore and Tina Mabry.
For more information, visit http://www.slamdance.com.
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In the closing scenes of the about-to-be released documentary “Public Trust,” environmental journalist Hal Herring says this of the battle over public lands: “You only have a right to what you are willing to fight for.”