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DAILY NEWS: Director Berry Dies; MN Film Fund Winners

Indiewire By Indiewire | Indiewire December 3, 1999 at 2:0AM

DAILY NEWS: Director Berry Dies; MN Film Fund Winners
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DAILY NEWS: Director Berry Dies; MN Film Fund Winners

by Maya Churi


>> John Berry, Acclaimed American Director, dies at age 82

John Berry, the acclaimed director of many films including " Miss Susie
Slagles
," "He Ran All The Way" and the upcoming "Boesman and Lena" starring Angela Bassett and Danny Glover, died on Monday, November 30th at a hospital in Paris after a bout of Pleuresy. The director leaves
behind a legacy of stage and film productions more culturally diverse
than any other American director of his era. Born in the Bronx in 1917
he went on to assist Orson Welles and Billy Wilder before starting to
direct his own film and stage productions. In 1940 he adapted Richard
Wright
's novel "Native Son," which was his first step in a long
relationship with the African American community. He also directed the
first play ever to show an intimate inter-racial relationship. After
completing over 5 films, the 1950's blacklist cut his career short
just as he was preparing to shoot his version of "The Man with the
Golden Arm
."


Having been exiled to France for a number of years he came back to the
United States in 1963 and continued an International filmmaking and
stage career that took him to England, Canada, India, Russia, Japan and
most recently to South Africa. It was at this time that he discovered
the great South African playwright Athol Fugard from whose play "Boesman
and Lena," Berry's newest film, is based.


For more information on John Berry's career visit:
http://us.imdb.com/Name?Berry,+John+(I)


>> Minneapolis Independent Film Fund Winners Announced

On November 29th the Walker Art Center, IFP/North and the Minnesota Film
Board
announced the winners of the 5th annual Minnesota Independent Film
Fund
. These development funds of $25,000 each were awarded to 3
Minnesota based filmmakers in an effort to promote and nurture the
independent filmmaking community. The grants also include a
Screenwriters' Mentorship Program which will provide support and
resources to ensure that the screenplay associated with the winning
project is developed to its fullest potential. This years winners were:
"The Silent Chill," a circus story for grown-ups, by Kate Lehmann, "Seed
Corn Symphony
," about a man who plays music to his corn to help it grow
by J.D. Dunlop and "Two Harbors," a coming of age story set against the
backdrop of the Iron ore industry by William Kruse.