The Winter Film Awards Festival highlights the range of talent and storytelling capabilities the independent filmmaking community has to offer across genres. The Festival, in its third year, includes screenings, receptions, and after parties, and allows writers, actors, casting directors, film distributors, and other entertainment professionals to network with each other. The Festival began with a Filmmaker’s Reception and Kick-Off party at 49 Grove last Wednesday night, featuring amazing cupcakes from Sweets First Bakery, and vodka-infused cognac samplings from 20 Grand. 61 Film screenings ran Thursday through Saturday at the Blue Diamond Theater, and included a diverse selection of documentaries, shorts, narrative features, animation, music videos and horror movies, including 8 student films, 17 female directors, and representation from over 20 countries.
Saturday night was the Winter Film Festival’s Award Ceremony and After Party at the luxurious 230 Fifth lounge, and featured a William Wolf Whiskey tasting and complimentary desserts from Cupcake Cartel NYC. Comedian Zach Garner hosted the event, which included many musical performances, models, and a parade of presenters. Highlights of this year’s festival included “Not Anymore: A Story of Revolution," a short documentary about the Syrian uprising directed by former Gaddafi prisoner of war Matthew VanDyke, the world premiere of “Hipster! the Musical” by first-time director Adam Blair, Wild Rose Independent Film Festival Best Editing winner “Closing Bell,” Shockfest 2014′s Best Horror Feature ”The Gauntlet," award-winning documentary short “Herd In Iceland," Belgian and UAE film “Baghdad Messi,” which has won over 20 awards in festivals all over the world, and Tribeca Best Short Nominee “Fool’s Day” by Cody Blue Snider, which has taken a number of titles in festivals throughout the country.
2014 Winter Film Award Winners are as follows:
- Gavin Brown, “Found” – Best Actor
- Tesha Moon Krieg, “Maria” – Best Actress
- “Andrew: Story of a Closet Monster” – Best Animated Film
- Scott Schirmer, “Found” – Best Director
- “Not Anymore: A Story of Revolution” – Best Documentary Film
- “Agnus Dei” – Best Foreign Language Film
- "Masheenee Alcketiara,” Ema Shah – Best Music Video
- “Hipster! The Musical” – Best Original Score
- “Grace” – Best Screenplay
- “Baghdad Messi” – Best Short Film
- “Job Interview” – Best Student Film
- “The Final Note” – Perspectives Award
- “The Gauntlet” – Best Horror Feature Film
- “I See Monsters” – Best Horror Short Film
- “Behind Closed Doors” – Best Picture
The Winter Film Awards are a volunteer-run and operated celebration of the diversity of local and international filmmaking. Its mission is to recognize excellence in cinema, and to promote learning and artistic expression for people at all stages of their artistic careers, with a focus on nurturing emerging filmmakers from around the world.
For the full list of nominees and for more information on the Winter Film Awards, visit www.winterfilmawards.com.