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February 20, 2001 2:00 AM
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DAILY NEWS: Berlin Winners; Florida Fest Swamp Prize

DAILY NEWS: Berlin Winners; Florida Fest Swamp Prize



by Eugene Hernandez/indieWIRE


>> BERLIN 2001: "Intimacy" Golden in Berlin as Festival Ends; "Hedwig" Takes Top Teddy Award, Outgoing de Hadeln Also Honored


(indieWIRE/02.20.01) -- The 51st Berlinale concluded this weekend with
Patrice Chereau's "Intimacy" winning the Golden Bear, the top award at the
Festival. Kerry Fox, a lead in the movie, was awarded a Silver Bear for
Best Actress for her performance. The explicit film has yet to find a
theatrical home here. The jury gave its Silver Bear grand prize to Wang
Xiaoshuai
's "Beijing Bicycle," which was acquired earlier in the Festival
by Sony Pictures Classics for domestic theatrical distribution. "Italian
for Beginners
," a buzz film of the festival and the fifth Danish Dogme
movie, won a Silver Bear Jury Prize. It was acquired earlier in the week
by Miramax.


The Festival jury gave its Best Director Silver Bear to Lin Cheng-sheng's
"Betelnut Beauty," a lower-profile Berlinale entry. High profile American
entries were barely recognized at Sunday's awards ceremony. While last
year's fest was dominated by "Magnolia," only "Traffic" was able to muster
a prize -- a Silver Bear for Benecio del Toro as Best Actor.


The Golden Bear for Best Short Film went to Martine Chartrand for "Black
Soul
," while Frank Fitzpatrick won a Silver Bear for the short, "Jungle
Jazz: Public Enemy
."


On Saturday night, it was the Festival's queer films that took the
spotlight, at the presentation of the 15th Teddy Awards. The event included
a rousing ceremony, highlighted by acrobats and a surprise performance by
Nina Hagen, followed by huge bash that filled numerous floors of the Haus
der Kulturen der Welt
.


John Cameron Mitchell won the Teddy for Best Feature for "Hedwig and the
Angry Inch
." The Sundance double award winner was very well-received in
Berlin and Mitchell told a cheering audience, "It is very important to be
accepted in Berlin, this is so much more fun than Sundance." Sandi
Dubowski
's "Trembling Before G-d," another Sundance premiere that was
embraced here in Berlin, won the Teddy for Best Documentary, while David
Wiroth
won the Teddy for Best Short Film for "Erè Melà Melà."


Lily Taylor made a surprise appearance on stage at the Teddys, introduced by
Panorama Director Weiland Speck, the actress -- in Berlin with "Julie
Johnson
" -- presented a Special Teddy Award to longtime Berlinale Festival
Director Moritz de Hadeln. De Hadeln, leaving after 22 years, received a
standing ovation from the full house crowd.


De Hadeln made The Teddy an official award of Berlinale in 1992 and it
remains the only prize of its kind at a major international film festival.
Concluding his remarks on stage, de Hadeln advocated for the importance of
the Teddy, "I do hope that my successors don't forget the past history of
this festival and this town and what was done to gay people not so very
long ago." [Eugene Hernandez]


[Numerous other awards were presented in Berlin, for more info, visit the
official website: http://www.berlinale.de.]


GET THE LATEST FROM BERLIN @ indieWIRE.com:
http://www.indiewire.com/berlin


>> Filmmakers Offered Swamp Land in Florida on Anniversary of State Fest


(indieWIRE/02.20.01) -- The Florida Film Festival, a leading American
regional fest, will celebrate its 10th anniversary in June with the
debut of a new award offering a hefty goods and services package and
even swamp land in the state. The winner of the annual Grand Jury
Prize will receive a $100,000 goods and services prize, according
to Friday's announcement, while the new Florida Forever Filmmaker
Award will grant a conservation easement to ten acres of swamp
land adjoining the state's Green Swamp. The award will go to a
filmmaker whose movie "best represents the human condition and
its relationship with our planet," according to a Festival
announcement.


"We hope that the Florida Forever Filmmaker Award will help bring
attention to the fact that Florida's swamp land is no longer a
punch line but a natural resource vital to us all," commented Festival
President Philip Tiedtke in a prepared statement. "The award encourages
talented emerging filmmakers to make their next film here in Florida
by creating the $100,000 awards package of goods and services provided
by the local film industry." [Eugene Hernandez]

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