The 29th annual Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Film Festival took place July 7 to 17.
According to festival organizers: Outfest is the leading organization showcasing, nurturing and preserving lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender film images and artistry. Outfest has led the charge, spotlighting emerging talent, creating community between filmmakers and audiences and offering a world-class forum for stories that reflect and often transform LGBT lives.
The following were the winners at Outfest 2011 (including comments explaining why the chosen films were honored):
Special Programming Awards
Special Programming Award for Freedom, Sponsored by GLAAD
NO LOOK PASS, Directed by Melissa Johnson
For its unflinching look at the life of a young lesbian basketball star facing the hardships of coming out and a relationship challenged by “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”
Special Programming Award for Artistic Achievement, Sponsored by APA
THE BALLAD OF GENESIS AND LADY JAYE, Directed by Marie Losier
For matching the conceptual daring and aesthetic bravado of its subjects’ lives with an equally powerful filmmaking style and for never losing sight of the love story that flourished in an atmosphere of gender experimentation and conceptual music.
Special Programming Award for Emerging Talent, Sponsored by Greenhouse Studios
Madeleine Olnek, Writer/Director of CODEPENDENT LESBIAN SPACE ALIEN SEEKS SAME
For her witty and creative vision, her skill at eliciting memorable performances, for deftly blending old school science fiction and deadpan comedy, and for believing that true love exists even if it means going to another planet to find it.
Audience Award for Outstanding Documentary Short Film, Sponsored by Ramada Plaza Hotel West Hollywood
SAME DIFFERENCE, Directed by Catherine Opie & Lisa Udelson
Audience Award for Outstanding Documentary Feature Film, Sponsored by World of Wonder (cash prize of $1,500 from WOW)
WE WERE HERE, Directed by David Weissman & Bill Weber
Audience Award for Outstanding Dramatic Short Film, Sponsored by Wolfe Video
TSUYAKO, Directed by Mitsuyo Miyazaki
Audience Award for Outstanding Dramatic Feature Film, Sponsored by Relativity Media
3, Directed by Tom Tykwer
Audience Award for Outstanding First U.S. Dramatic Feature Film, Sponsored by HBO (cash prize of $5,000 from HBO)
CIRCUMSTANCE, Directed by Maryam Keshavarz
Grand Jury Award for Outstanding Documentary Short Film, Sponsored by Yellow Cab Company
THANK YOU FOR YOUR CALL, Directed by Shawn Nee
For its moving examination of one man’s emotional journey through a complex and systematic issue of inequity which currently affects, and will continue to affect, many of us.
Grand Jury Award for Outstanding Dramatic Short Film, Sponsored by CRE Rentals
I DON’T WANT TO GO BACK ALONE, Directed by Daniel Ribeiro
For its sensitive and original portrayal of a young man’s self-realization of his sexuality, and for the quality of its direction, writing, and its performances.
Grand Jury Award for Outstanding Documentary Feature Film, Sponsored by Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel
HABANA MUDA, Directed by Eric Brach
This year’s winning documentary is a beautifully crafted narrative that reveals multiple worlds and gives us access to intimate moments and complex relationships. It’s a very personal story that rises above the issues it explores, and entertains us in every moment.
Grand Jury Award for Outstanding International Dramatic Feature Film, Sponsored by The Standard
WEEKEND, Directed by Andrew Haigh
This year’s winning international dramatic feature film is a touching, authentic portrayal of gay life as we truly experience it: not stylized, not glamorized, but heartfelt, perceptive and absorbingly real. From the first frame it manages to get beneath the artifice we are used to. In its own quiet, unflinching way it leaves you a little bit changed, and yet more yourself than you ever were.
Grand Jury Award for Outstanding Actress in a Feature Film, Sponsored by Glee
Nikohl Boosheri, CIRCUMSTANCE
For her fierce and sensual portrayal of a young woman struggling to balance the tumultuous landscape of her sexuality in a world in flux around her.
Grand Jury Award for Outstanding Actor in a Feature Film, Sponsored by Macy’s
THE CAST OF PRIVATE ROMEO
For bringing fresh life to a timeless love story and infusing each moment with a 21st century immediacy that balances naked passion with longing and delivering it all with brilliant coherence.
Grand Jury Award for Outstanding Screenwriting, Sponsored by The New York Times
Stephen Cone, THE WISE KIDS
For a script that transports us to a world with rare authenticity and plunges into the lives of a myriad of characters with surprising depth and compassion and never judges its characters.
Grand Jury Award for Outstanding U.S. Dramatic Feature Film, Sponsored by The Caprio Trust
THE WISE KIDS, Directed by Stephen Cone
We were very moved by this film not only as a love letter to the community it depicts but as a universal portrayal of characters both coming of age and coming of middle age. We also believe this film represents American independent cinema at its best and marks the discovery of a filmmaker with a compelling cinematic voice.
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