By Brian Brooks | Indiewire April 14, 2010 at 12:7PM
The 15th edition of the Gen Art Film Festival closed out in New York City on Tuesday night with "Tanner Hall," "happythankyoumoreplease" and "The Hirosake Players" among the top winners at the event.
IFC Films' "Mercy" by Patrick Hoelck capped the fest's "seven premieres and seven parties" with a bash at Blvd on Manhattan's Lower East Side last night. "Tanner Hall" directors Tatiana Von Furstenberg and Francesca Gregorini received the Acura Grand Jury Award for Best Picture, while Vance Malone's "The Poddle Trainer" won Best Short. Both received cash prizes of $10,000 and $5,000 respectively. Meanwhile, Josh Radnor's New York City-set "happythankyoumoreplease" and Jeff Sousa's "The Hirosake Players" won Gen Art's Audience Awards.
"Tanner Hall" actress Rooney Mara was recognized as an "emerging talent" with the fest's "Wonderwall.com Stargazer Award. The role was Mara's first lead performance, but she has since gone on to appear in indie films including "Youth in Revolt" and "Dare," both which opened theatrically. She will also appear in the remake of "A Nightmare on Elm Street" which opens nationally on April 30th.
"To celebrate our 15th year we sought to program films that would really excite our audience and by all measures we succeeded in doing such," commented Jeffrey Abramson, Gen Art Senior Vice President of Film in a statement. "Our audience award reactions were exceptionally high and enthusiastic and the # of passholders and repeat attendees significantly increased."
Also premiering at this year's Gen Art were James Keach's "Waiting for Forever," Alexandre Franchi's "The Wild Hunt," Adrian Grenier's "Teenage Paparazzo," and Sebastian Gutierrez's "Elektra Luxx."