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by Eugene Hernandez
March 15, 2006 4:36 AM
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Byler's "AMERICANese" Wins Two at SXSW; "Darkon," "Jam," and "Live Free or Die" Also Win Top Prizes

"AMERICANese" star Chris Tashima with the film's writer/director Eric Byler and co-star Allison Sie, accepting their narrative audience award at the 2006 SXSW Film Festival. Photo by Eugene Hernandez/indieWIRE

At the midpoint of the 2006 SXSW Film Conference and Festival here in Austin, organizers presented jury and audience prizes for this year's festival. Eric Byler's "AMERICANese" won two prizes tonight in Austin, receiving the narrative audience award and a special jury prize for outstanding ensemble cast. The win was particularly sweet for Byler, since he also won the audience prize at SXSW four years ago for his previous feature, "Charlotte Sometimes". The festival's narrative jury award went to Andy Robin and Gregg Kavet's "Live Free or Die". Andrew Neel and Luke Meyer's "Darkon" won the documentary audience award and Mark Woollen's "Jam" was the jury prize winner in the doc competition.

While the conference concluded tonight at the Austin Convention Center, followed by a concert party featuring Sleater-Kinney, the film festival program will continue through the weekend alongside the massive SXSW Music fest.

SXSW co-founder Louis Black welcomed attendees to tonight's informal ceremony, reminding attendees that when the SXSW music event was founded twenty years ago, it was created by film students, he added that years later he is excited by the success of the film fest and conference. "These are not auditions for Hollywood," Black said, "They are films that are made to fulfill a vision." Adding about the film fest, he said, "I swear to god its not about money, its not about celebrity, its about the films.

The complete list of winners follows:

AUDIENCE AWARDS

Narrative Feature
Winner:
"AMERICANese" Dir. Eric Byler

Documentary Feature
Winner:
"Darkon" Dir. Andrew Neel & Luke Meyer

Lone Star States
Winner:
"State VS Reed" Dir. Ryan Polomski & Frank Bustoz

Runner Up:
"Slam Planet: War of the Words" Dir. Mike Henry & Kyle Fuller

Emerging Visions
Winner:
"High Score" Dir. Jeremy Mack
Runner Up:
"Manhattan, Kansas" Dir. Tara Wray


JURY AWARDS

Narrative Feature
Winner:
"Live Free or Die" Dir. Andy Robin & Gregg Kavet
Special Jury Prize - Outstanding Visual Achievement:
"Inner Circle Line" Dir. Eunhee Cho
Special Jury Prize - Outstanding Ensemble Cast:
"AMERICANese" Dir. Eric Byler

Documentary Feature
Winner:
"Jam" Dir. Mark Woollen
Special Jury Award:
"Maxed Out" Dir. James D. Scurlock

Texas High School Competition
Winner:
"Maikafer" Dir. Chris Hergert
Runner Up:
"Weathered" Dir. Elizabeth Mims

Music Videos
Winner:
Ralfe Band "Women Of Japan" Dir. Nigel Coan & Ivana Zorn
Runner Up:
The Sad Little Stars 'Don't Fuck With Love' Dir. Rachel McIntosh & Jim Starace

Experimental Shorts
Winner: (tie)
"Sea Change" Dir. Joe King & Rosie Pedlow
"Marion" Dir. Ry Russo-Young
Runner Up:
"Stadtplan" Dir. Reynold Reynolds

Animated Shorts
Winner:
"The Wraith of Cobble Hill" Dir. Adam Parrish King
Runner Up:
"Tall Tales & Other Big Lies" Dir. Dano Johnson

Reel Shorts
Winner:
"Hiro" Dir. Matthew Swanson
Runner Up:
"Shortstop" Dir. Risa Machuca & Fanny Veliz

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