The 26th SFIAAFF is proud to announce its 2008 award winners in the categories of Best Narrative Feature and Best Documentary Feature.
The Best Narrative Award is presented to the best feature-length narrative film by or about Asian Americans and Asian Canadians, as selected by a three-person jury that included independent filmmaker andplaywright Philip Gotanda, Gina Kwon, independent producer of projects including Miranda July’s You and me and Everyone We Know, and Academy Award winning screenwriter Iris Yamashita.
This year’s Narrative Competition consisted of 9 exciting new films,including 5 world premieres, that took on issues ranging from love and sex to table tennis. These films provoke, entertain and exhibit some ofthe best in Asian American cinema.
Congratulations to Amal, by director Richie Mehta, winner of this year’s Best Narrative Award. In this remarkable film debut, the director demonstrates anuncannily mature command of craft, story-telling and direction. In telling this classic tale of morality, the director has created aperfectly pitched film, full of wonderfully understated performancesand subtly beautiful moments.
For the Narrative Competition Special Jury Prize, the jurors feltthere were two films equally deserving the award. Both presented the best of independent filmmaking: the telling of stories full of heartand honesty; the dedication to portraying authentic worlds; and thecommitment to their specific visions.
Congratulations to Always Be Boyz, directed by Johnny Kwon, and Santa Mesa, directed by Ron Morales, this year’s Special Jury Prize winners in the Narrative Competition.
The Best Documentary Award is presented to the best feature-length documentary film by or about Asian Americans or Asian Canadians, asselected by a three-person jury that included Kathryn Lo, Associate Director of Program Development and Independent Film at PBS, Stanley Nelson, Bay Area-based documentary filmmaker, and Celine ParrenasShimizu, Associate Professor of Asian American, Film and Women’s Studies at UC Santa Barbara.
This year’s Documentary Competition included seven documentaries that explored some of the most pressing and intriguing issues in AsianAmerica. Far-reaching, personal, uplifting and thought-provoking, these select films prove themselves heavy contenders in the genre of documentary filmmaking.
Congratulations to Planet B-Boy, directed by Benson Lee, this year’s Best Documentary Award winner.
Planet B-Boy combines form and content to tell a story that is constantly entertaining and exciting. A story that gets at universaltruths while dancing it’s way to our hearts. For the Documentary Competition Special Jury Prize, the jury chose afilm that tells the story of Kamikaze pilots during WWII in a way thatis both universal and personnel. A film that brilliantly uses archivalfootage, animation and interviews to tell this harrowing and remarkablestory. Congratulations to Wings of Defeat, directed by Risa Morimoto, winner of this year’s Special Jury Prize in the Documentary Competition.