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Urbanworld Honors “Beat the Drum”

Urbanworld Honors "Beat the Drum"

Urbanworld Honors “Beat the Drum”

by Sandra Ogle

Junior Singo in a scene from David Hickson’s “Beat the Drum,” which took the award for best picture at the Urbanworld Film Festival. Image courtesy of the Urbanworld Film Festival.

The Urbanworld Film Festival has announced the winners for its 8th annual festival, which was held in New York City from August 4-8. The festival, presented by MTV2, screened 103 feature, documentary, and short films this year. Stacy Spikes, founder of Urbanworld, said in a statement that a special jury awards category was created this year so that more filmmakers could be recognized for their talent during the festival.

David Hickson‘s “Beat the Drum,” about a young orphan on a journey to Johannesburg, South Africa, won the award for best feature. The special jury prize for “director to watch” went to Korean filmmaker Eui-Seok Kim for his feature “Sword in the Moon,” about a military unit of swordsmen, while the special jury prize for best actress in a feature went to Cherine Anderson in “One Love.” Also, the best screenplay award went to S. Casper Wong‘s “Babyface” and the audience award for best screenplay went to Larry Golin‘s coming-of-age film “Cross Bronx.”

The award for best documentary went to Sandra Dickson‘s “Negroes with Guns,” which focuses on Robert Williams, a civil rights crusader who was passionate about promoting passive resistance in the 1960s. The special jury prize for feature length documentary went to Leslie Neale‘s “Juvies,” an intensive look at youth crime in America. Alex Rivera‘s “The Sixth Section,” about the formation of immigrant organizations across international borders, won the award for best documentary short, and Jerry A. Henry‘s look at a group of orphans in Kenya, “I Promise Africa,” won the special jury prize for short documentary.

Winners in the shorts category include: Dean Hargrove‘s “Tap Heat” for best short; Morroco Omar in “Andre Royo’s Big Scene” and “The Male Groupie” for the best actor special jury prize; and Monica Mallet in “Shooter” for the best actress special jury prize.

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