The Pan African Film and Arts Festival (PAFF) announced today the winners of its annual film competition. A favorite among PAFF jurors and audiences was the South Africa/UK film "Skin" starring Sophie Okonedo.
Based on a true story, a genetic abnormality caused Sandra Laing (Sophie Okonedo), born of white parents in apartheid South Africa, to look like a black person. Tormented and unaccepted by white society though classified as white, she falls in love with a Black man and moves to a township, alienating her parents. The real Sandra Laing flew to Los Angeles from South Africa to attend the screening of "Skin" at the PAFF.
Other top honors went to the US film "Prince of Broadway" for Best Narrative Feature, France's "Cuba: An African Odyssey" for Best Documentary Feature, and the Bahamas' "Rain" for Best Director-First Feature.
Jury Prizes were awarded in the following categories: Best Documentary Feature, Best Documentary Short, Best Narrative Short, Best Narrative Feature, and Best Director-First Feature. In addition to the Jury Prizes, the PAFF audience cast ballots for their favorite documentary and narrative films, as well as the PAFF Director's Award and Programmer's Award.
Film nominations are selected by a jury of industry professionals, with the exception of the audience favorite awards, which are based on the results of ballots cast by festival filmgoers. Screenings for the 2009 PAFF Jury of all films receiving nominations took place February 5-16, 2009 at the Culver Plaza Theatres. The 2009 PAFF Awards were announced on Monday, February 16 at the annual PAFF Filmmaker Awards Brunch at the Culver Hotel in Culver City.
"With over thirty world and U.S. premieres, this year's lineup is a remarkable representation of the African cinematic landscape from the United States and across the globe," commented Sharifa Johka, PAFF senior programming consultant. "Los Angeles has a large international population and I am so excited to bring this diverse and exciting program to this community."
The Pan African Film and Arts Festival (PAFF) was founded in 1992 as a non-profit corporation dedicated to the promotion of cultural and racial tolerance and understanding through the exhibition of film, art and creative expression. It is the PAFFs goal to present and showcase a broad spectrum of Black creative works, particularly those that reinforce positive images and help to destroy negative stereotypes. The PAFF believes film and art can lead to better understanding and foster communication between peoples of diverse cultures, races, and lifestyles, while at the same time, serve as a vehicle to initiate dialogue on the important issues of our times.
17th PAN AFRICAN FILM FESTIVAL FILM COMPETITION WINNERS
BEST NARRATIVE FEATURE – "Prince of Broadway"
BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE – "Cuba, An African Odyssey"
BEST NARRATIVE SHORT – "Kwame"
BEST DOCUMENTARY SHORT – "Scarred Justice: The Orangeburg Massacre"
BEST FIRST FEATURE – DIRECTOR – "Rain"
JURY FAVORITE & AUDIENCE FAVORITE – "Skin"
AUDIENCE FAVORITE DOCUMENTARY – "Nubian Spirit: The African Legacy of the Nile Valley"
DIRECTOR'S AWARD DOCUMENTARY – "Milking the Rhino"
PROGRAMMER'S AWARD NARRATIVE – "Run Baby Run"
PROGRAMMER'S AWARD DOCUMENTARY – "Standing N Truth"