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by Indiewire
March 6, 2001 2:00 AM
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DAILY NEWS: SD Latino Fest; Spirit Award Celebs; and Danish Hit

DAILY NEWS: SD Latino Fest; Spirit Award Celebs; and Danish Hit



by Anthony Kaufman and Brian Brooks/indieWIRE



>> Carillo and "Ratas" at Start of San Diego Latino Fest


(indieWIRE/03.06.01) -- The San Diego Latino Film Festival is set to begin
tonight (Tuesday) at 5:30 p.m. with an opening night celebration and
reception at the Doubletree Hotel San Diego's Club Max. Following the
reception in which actress Elpidia Carrillo ("Bread and Roses," "Tortilla
Heaven
") will be honored is a screening of Sebastian Cordero's debut
feature, "Ratas, Ratones, Rateros." "Ratas" has received many awards in
international festivals including a nomination for a Goya Award (Spain's
equivalent to the Oscar). The film is a sobering depiction of juvenile
delinquency in Latin America's urban areas. A young boy, Salvador, slowly
evolves from petty thievery into more serious crime as he enlists to
participate in scams by his ex-convict cousin, Angel.


Now in its seventh year, the San Diego Latino Film Festival was originally
established as a student film festival with emphasis on projects by Latinos
as well as those focusing on the Latino experience. Since then, the
Festival has grown into one of the largest celebrating Latino film in the
country. [Brian Brooks]


>> Bassett and Del Toro to Serve as Spirit Awards Co-Chairs; Celeb Presenters Named


(indieWIRE/03.06.01) --The IFP/West Independent Spirit Awards, the annual
event honoring distinguished personalities in the independent film
community, has announced that Academy-Award nominees Angela Bassett ("What's Love Got to Do With It") and Benicio Del Toro ("Traffic") will serve as honorary Co-Chairpersons for the 16th annual ceremony which will be held
Saturday, March 24th in Santa Monica, California. Since its debut as a
small program, the Spirit Awards have grown into one of the most anticipated
events on the film calendar. Ballots are cast by the nationwide membership
base of 8,500 from the Independent Feature Project, a nonprofit membership
organization for independent filmmakers.


Director John Waters is on board as the Master of Ceremonies for the
ceremony and he will be joined by a diverse group of celebrity presenters,
among them are Don Cheadle, Holly Hunter, Famke Jansen, Christine Lahti, Jared Leto, Bill Paxton, Tim Roth, Geoffrey Rush, Chloë Sevigny, Hilary Swank, Patrick Swayze, and Forest Whitaker.


"Both Angela and Benicio have been long-time supporters of IFP/West, and
Benicio has won two Independent Spirit Awards," commented Dawn Hudson,
Executive Director of Independent Feature Project/West in a prepared
statement. "We couldn't have more talented or more generous Co-Chairs than
these two for our awards." Del Toro received Spirit Awards for his roles in
"The Usual Suspects" by Bryan Singer and Julian Schnabel's "Basquiat." [Brian Brooks]


GET THE COMPLETE LIST of Spirit Award Nominations at indieWIRE.com:
http://www.indiewire.com/biz/biz_010111_spirits.html


[The Spirit Awards will be broadcast live by the Independent Film Channel on
March 24th at 5:00 PM EST.]


>> Zentropa's "The Bench" Big in Denmark


(indieWIRE/03.06.01) -- Continuing its sweep of Scandinavian film awards,
Per Fly's directorial debut "The Bench," a powerful Danish drama about an
alcoholic, added to its winnings on Sunday night with awards for best film,
best actor (Jesper Christensen), and best supporting actor (Nikolaj
Kopernikus
) at the annual Bodil Awards in Copenhagen, the country's
52-year-old critics prize ceremony.

Last February, "The Bench" took top honors at the Danish Film Academy's
Robert awards, garnering prizes for best film, director, actor, supporting
actor, costume and make-up. Produced by Danish powerhouse production arm,
Zentropa, the company also picked up prizes for best supporting actress for
Lene Tiemroth in recent Berlin Silver-Bear winner "Italian for Beginners,"
directed by Lone Scherfig and produced by Ib Tardini, who also produced "The
Bench," and Bjork's performance in Lars Von Trier's "Dancer in the Dark."
Following up on Zentropa's banner year, three honorary prizes went to the
company's producers Vibeke Windelov, Ib Tardini and Peter Aalbaek Jensen,
in recognition of their contribution to the Danish film industry. [Anthony
Kaufman]

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