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April 22, 1998 2:00 AM
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USA Film Festival Shorts Awards Announced

USA Film Festival Shorts Awards Announced

by Mark Rabinowitz




The USA Film Festival (USAFF) announced the winners of the 20th annual
short film & video competition on Sunday, with Don Hertzfeldt's "Lily
and Jim
" picking up the Grand Prize, as well as being picked for the
first prize in the Animation category. Winners in each category were
presented with $1,000 cash, with several special achievement and apecial
jury awards of $500 and $250 being handed, as well. First place in the
fiction category went to "Stuck," by Matt Johnson, while the non-fiction
award winner was "The Spitball Story," by Jean Back. The experimental
winner was Ellie Lee for her film, "Repetition Compulsion." First place
winners in all categories become eligible for Oscar consideration by the
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.


The jury for the competition included Jury Chair actress Frances Fisher
("Unforgiven," "Titanic"), directors Sam Green ("The Rainbow Man/John
3:16
") and Andy Anderson ("Positive I.D."), and Elvis Mitchell, film
criticfor NPR's Weekend Edition with Scott Simon and the ForWorth
Star-Telegram. The jury handed out several special jury awards of $250
each, to Gayla Jamison's "Approach of Dawn," Steven Dovas' "Call Me
Fishmael
," David Blood's "Headless at the Fair" and David Birdsell's
"Phil Touches Flo."


Several other awards were handed out, all for $500, including a Special
Achievement Award for "One Self: Fish/Girl" by Emily Hubley, daughter of
groundbreaking animator Faith Hubley. The Family Award, dedicated to the
memory of former competition chair Charles Samu, went to Paul Dekuchitz
and Marianne McCune for "Memories Do Not Burn." The Texas Award to the
memory of USAFF co-founder Dr. G. William Jones, went to Heather Korb
for "Third Ward Blues," and Joel Hopkins picked up the Student Award for
"Jorge."

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