New York, April 20, 2013 The 14th Havana Film Festival NY announced the Havana Star Prize Winners during a packed Closing Night Ceremony at the New York Directors Guild Theater. Rat Fever (Febre do Rato) by Claudio Assis (Brazil) won the Havana Star Prize for Best Feature; Best Director went to Chilean director Fernando Lavanderos for Things The Way They Are (Las cosas como son) and Best Screenplay was awarded to Argentine filmmaker Eliseo Subiela for Vanishing Landscapes (Paisajes Devorados); while Sibila (Chile) by Teresa Arredondo won the Havana Star Prize for Best Documentary, and a Special Jury Mention went to The Etnographer (El Etnógrafo), a documentary by Argentine Ulises Rosell. The jury included Peter Biskind, Carlos Gutierrez and Rafi Mercado for Fiction categories; and Nancy Savoca, Jeronimo Rodriguez and Luciano Castillo for Documentary films.
The jury described Best Picture Rat Fever as “a poetic and raw film, multilayered, a despairing view of the place of poetry and anarchy in our society, destined to be eaten by rats. This is also a film that you will take home and you will think about,” while it characterized Best Documentary Sibila as “a complex portrait of a woman who devoted her life to her convictions during a tumultuous political time, and the effects it had on the people around her. The filmmaker engages the viewer in a fierce confrontation between ideologies and generations. This results in a fearless work that delves into an unresolved chapter in recent Latin American history.”
A full house attended the Closing Night Ceremony and Awards Presentation, followed by the New York premiere of 7 Boxes (7 Cajas). The Paraguayan film directed by Tana Schembori and Juan Carlos Maneglia was so popular amongst the public that the festival scheduled an additional screening, resulting in a total audience of approximately 900 people for the film.
The presenting sponsor of HFFNY 2013 is NBC Universal / Telemundo NY. Additional sponsorship is provided by El Diario La Prensa, TD Bank, Xael Charters, Marazul Charters, Enrola TV, Rockamedia, Copacabana Pizza & Grill, Iguana Bar Restaurant, Copacabana, Il Buco. Official hotel sponsor is the Maritime Hotel.
The Havana Film Festival New York is made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council. HFFNY is also supported by Mayor Bloomberg’s Latin Media and Entertainment Commission (LMEC).
The Havana Film Festival New York is a project of American Friends of the Ludwig Foundation of Cuba (AFLFC), a non-profit 501 (c) (3) organization building cultural bridges between the U.S. and Cuba through programs in the arts