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Toronto-based film-makers, Joyce Wong and Sonia Hong, won @ the Toronto Urban Film Festival (TUFF), September 20, capturing both 1st Place and the "Women in Film & Television Toronto" (WIFT-T) Award for 'Most Ambitious Film by a Female Filmmaker' for their stop-motion short "EmBodying Toronto", a 1-minute silent film "...taking a fanciful look at what Toronto would look like on the body of a woman..."
The duo were presented with a trip for two to the Dominican Republic, complimentary memberships to WIFT-T, a $1,200 WIFT-T programming pass and a $1,500 equipment rental credit.
Ceremonies were held at Toronto's Queen Street West, Drake Underground, attended by local filmmakers, jurors and the Toronto Mayor.
The other big award of the evening went to Toronto's Elijah Marchand, winner of the inaugural "Naish McHugh Award for Emerging Filmmakers", presented with a $2,500 cheque by the Mayor on behalf of the City of Toronto. His 1-minute film, "Jour Bruyant", is "...an exquisite dramatic short about a young woman, a young man, and their near encounter on the subway..."
2nd place - "DISCS" - David Frankovich - $2,500 cash award.
3rd place - "The Split" - Vuk Dragojevic - $2000 cash award.
Honourable mentions were also handed out to Tara Cooper for "Tara and Terry’s Summer Vacation" and to Maayke Schurer for "Urban Salvation".
"I am continually impressed with what our filmmakers can do in one silent minute, and I am always inspired by their creative views on city living and urban issues,” said Sharon Switzer, TUFF Executive Producer.
The Drake 'Audience Choice' Award was won by "Our Toronto: Nuit Blanche 08", a mixed-media work, with director, Daniel Sidorowicz, receiving a complimentary screening/reception at The Drake Underground to support the launch of his next film.
'TUFFIES' were also presented to filmmakers in each of 7 categories as well as to three special category winners. Top picks in each program category were decided by a jury of local figures from the art, media and film community:
Best in Urban Diversity -- "The Clothes Make The Man" -- Owen Eric Wood - Selected by Guest Juror Ali Kazimi (Professor in the Department of Film at York University)
Best in Urban Encounters - "Water Children (An Urban Ballet)" - Lorène Bourgeois - Selected by Guest Juror Jennifer Chen (Director of Programming at 'Channel Zero')
Best in Urban Ideas - "STATIC" - Alice Bradshaw - Selected by Guest Juror Pablo de Ocampo (Artistic Director, Images Festival)
Best in Urban Imaginary - "Aeroplanes" - Ryan Hughes -- Selected by Guest Juror Janine Marchessault (Professor, Cinema/Media Studies, York University).
Best in Urban Journeys - "me, City" - Dennis Day - Selected by Guest Juror Lisa Steele (Chair, Department of Art, University of Toronto)
Best in Urban Natural - "Urban Jungle" - Joe Pascale - Selected by Guest Juror Christina Battle (Assistant Professor, Film Studies, University of Colorado)
Best in Urban Secrets - "Kim and Jesse" - Nguyen-Anh Nguyen - Selected by Guest Judge Dara Gellman (video artist)
Best Comedic Film Award - "Big City" - thefergusonbrothers
Best Screenplay Award - "Dog Days" - Brandi Boulet
Trinity Square Video Pitch Award -- "Under Construction" -- Melissa Levin
The “Best of the Festival” can be viewed Monday, September 21st, on platform screens across Toronto's subway transit TTC or online @ torontourbanfilmfestival.com.