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DGA Winners; Michael Moore Gets New Series; Ritchie’s “Barrels” And Michael Moore Both Nab TV Deals;

DGA Winners; Michael Moore Gets New Series; Ritchie's "Barrels" And Michael Moore Both Nab TV Deals;

“Barrels” And Michael Moore Both Nab TV Deals; IFP/Midwest Event

Compiled by Mark Rabinowitz, Eugene Hernandez and Anthony Kaufman

>> DGA Picks Student Winners

The Directors Guild of America (DGA) recently announced the winners of
its 1998 Student Film Awards for African-American, Asian/Pacific, Latino
and women filmmakers
, with women making an exceptionally strong showing
this year. Four of the five winning filmmakers were women, as were
several of the honorable mentions. In addition, the majority of the
winning and honorable mention schools are in California. The
African-American category featured winners from both the East and West
coasts, with Shandra McDonald from Howard University winning for
Claudia Makes a Difference” and Christa Collins from San Francisco
State University winning for “She Smokes.” Honorable Mention went to
Pomona College ‘s Sylvain White for “Urban Short Circuit Mind Scrape.”

UCLA swept the Asian/Pacific section, with co-winners Fatimah Tobing
Rony and David Kiang, winning for their films “Demon Lover” and “Tunnel
,” respectively. Honorable Mention went to USC ‘s Chesley Chen,
for “Paper Birds.” The Latino category contained only two honorable
mentions, with one going to Kristy Guevera-Flanagan from San Francisco
State University, for “El Corrido de Cecilia Rios” and Columbia
College-Hollywood ‘s Mauricio Ammirata, for “Little Warriors.” Two AFI
students took honors in the Women ‘s category, with Barbara Schock
winning for “My Mother Dreams the Satan ‘s Disciples in New York,” and
honorable mention going to Marni Banack, for “John.”

Winners each receive $2,500 from the DGA and runners up receive 2,000
feet of 16mm film from Kodak ‘s Worldwide Student Film Program, and are
“designed to honor, encourage and bring attention to outstanding
minority and women film students in California film schools and other
select universities. The awards are set to be presented on Monday,
November 9, at 7:30 PM at the DGA theater in Los Angeles, and are open
to the public. To RSVP, please call 310-289-5300.

>> Bravo! For Michael Moore

Documentary filmmaker, author and working class spokesman Michael Moore
will return to television next Spring with a new series called “The
Awful Truth
” on the Bravo network. The 12-part original series will run
in weekly half-hour shows, combining comedy with non-fiction
situations. The show will be taped before a live audience and will
include monologues similar to those appearing in his 1998 doc “The Big
One.” “I look forward to the same close and productive relationship
with Bravo that I had on NBC and FOX — namely, produce a critically
acclaimed show with a large cult following and be canceled after 12
episodes,” says Moore. Moore ‘s show, the Emmy-Award winning “TV
” which served up landmark television moments such as surrounding
the maker of the car alarm with a number of spouting alarms, was canceled
after a brief run in the mid-90 ‘s. Planned segments for “The Awful
Truth” include The Witch Hunt, where Moore takes Puritans down to D.C.
to show Ken Starr how to conduct an affordable witch hunt and “A Gift
for Bill Gates,” in which Moore brings a weed-whacker as housewarming
gift to Gates ‘ new $60 million pad. “The Awful Truth” will premiere
exclusively on Bravo, Wednesday, April 14, 9:00 pm/ET. [Anthony Kaufman]

>> Lock, Stock Hits TV In Britain

According to The Hollywood Reporter, British box office hit, “Lock,
Stock and Two Smoking Barrels
,” written and directed by Guy Ritchie is
being developed into a television series by Ginger Productions and the
pics producer, SKA Films. Ritchie will exec produce the show, along with
Ginger Prods. topper Chris Evans, and Matthew Vaughn, the trade said.

>> Niederhoffer Grabs “Prozac”

According to Daily Variety, independent producer Galt Niederhoffer has
acquired the rights to Elizabeth Wurtzel ‘s best-selling book about
depression, “Prozac Nation.” While no writer or director is yet
attached, the trade surmised that the film will likely be an indie, but
since the book has such a high profile, studio interest is also a
possibility. The 23 year-old Niederhoffer will produce. The deal was
brokered by Lydia Wills of the Artists Agency for Wurtzel, while Paul
Brennan of New York-based Sloss Law Office, repped Niederhoffer.

>> IFP/Midwest Kicks off 7th Conference

The Independent Feature Project/Midwest launched their 7th Filmmakers
Conference yesterday in Chicago. Among the screenings yesterday were
Chicago premiere’s of David McKay’s “The Lesser Evil,” RIchard Schenkman
and Jon Cryer’s “Went to Coney Island on a Mission from God…Be Back by
,” and Adrian Lyne’s “Lolita.”

Panels and workshops run Friday and Saturday with participation by numerous
members of the indie community, including: producer Christine Vachon (“Velvet
Goldmine,” “Happiness”), reps Dave Sikich and Harris Tulchin, Samuel
Goldwyn’s Jeff Lipsky, BMI’s Doreen Ringer Ross, Good Machine’s Tracy
McKnight, Matador Record’s Lyle Hysen, producer Steve Jones (“Wild Things”),
writer/director Richard LaGravenese (“Living Out Loud”), filmmaker Peter
Gilbert (“Hoop Dreams”), producer Paul Marcus (“Chicago Cab”), Next Wave’s
Tara Veneruso (Janis Joplin Slept Here), filmmakers Seth Henrikson and David
Sarno (Goreville USA), and festival programers Thomas Ethan Harris (LAIFF),
Shooting Gallery’s Bob Gosse, Matthew Curtis (Florida Film Festival), Bryan
Wendorf (Chicago Underground), and Dennis Vaughn (Chicago Alt.Film Festival)
and filmmaker Richard Linklater (“The Newton Boys”).

[The event runs through Saturday November 14th. For more information,
call 773/281-5177.]

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