'Block' conquers crix and public
Helmer Kevin Smith’s horror-thriller “Red State” took best film and actor honors for Michael Parks at the 44th Sitges Festival, Europe’s biggest genre confab, which wrapped Saturday.Also starring John Goodman and Melissa Leo, “State” turns on religious fundamentalists determined to eradicate American teens’ sex-drive. World-preemiering at Sundance, and distributed Stateside by Smith under his Smodcast Pictures banner, “State” is sold internationally by IM Global. It has yet to snag distribution in Spain. The Studiocanal-sold “Attack the Block,” first-time writer-helmer Joe Cornish’s South London-set alien invasion spoof, scooped the special jury prize, the audience award, the critics’ prize and best soundtrack. Cornish, said at Sitges that he has all the material he needs for his next project: All he has to do is to sit down and write the screenplay. Production-distribution house Avalon releases “Block” in Spain Dec. 7. Sitges’ actress award went to Brit Marling in Mike Cahill’s “Another Earth,” a Sundance Fox Searchlight pick-up that enjoyed a warm audience and critical response at the Catalan fest. Local pics “Emergo,” “Blind Alley,” “Eva” and “Juan of the Dead” played to large applause and one key plaudit — Kike Maillo’s Sitges opener “Eva,” Spain’s first robot pic, won best f/x. Sitges ticket sales rose 5% to 65,000. The biggest draws were “Block,” Nacho Vigalondo’s “Extraterrestrial” and Jaume Balaguero’s “Sleep Tight,” which played out-of-competition. “Eva,” Benedek Fliegauf’s “Womb” and “Tight” were among the most buzzed-about fest pics, while Juan Andre Ovredal’s mockumentary “Troll Hunter,” Juan Martinez Moreno’s “Games of Werewolves” and Alejandro Brugues’ “Juan of the Dead” spoofs raised guffaws from auds. “Tight” opened Friday in Spain nabbing a solid €180,000 ($245,000) off 230 screens. Spain’s genre boom is attracting more interest abroad. Talent scouts at this year’s fest included Marc Helwig of ICM, David Flynn and Jason Burns of UTA and Abram Nalibotsky from the Gersh Agency. Matthijs van Heijningen’s “The Thing” played at Saturday’s prize gala.And the winners are: FANTASTIC COMPETITION FILM “Red State” (Kevin Smith, U.S.) DIRECTOR Na Hong-jin (“The Yellow Sea”) SPECIAL JURY AWARD “Attack the Block” (Joe Cornish, U.K.) ACTOR Michael Parks, “Red State” ACTRESS Brit Marling (“Another Earth,” U.S.) SCREENPLAY Lucky McKee and Jack Ketchum (“The Woman,” U.S.) CINEMATOGRAPHY Markus Forderer and Tim Fehlbaum (“Hell,” Germany) ART DIRECTION Marc Thiebault (“Livide,” France) MAKE UP F/X Steven Kostanski (“The Divide,” Germany, Canada, U.S.) F/X Lluis Castells and Javier Garcia (“Eva,” Spain) ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK Steven Price (“Attack the Block,” U.K.) FANTASTIC ORBITA AWARD “Guilty of Romance” (Sion Sono, Japan) YOUTH JURY AWARD “Bellflower,” (Evan Glodell, U.S.) CASA ASIA AWARD “The Unjust” (Ryoo Seung-wan, South Korea) ANIMATION GERTIE FILM AWARD “Tatsumi,” (Eric Khoo, Singapore, Indonesia) GOLDEN MELIES, EUROPEAN PICTURE “The Last Circus,” (Alex de la Iglesia, Spain, France) SILVER MELIES, EUROPEAN PICTURE “Kill List” (Ben Wheatley, U.K.) NEW VISIONS AWARD “Night Fishing” (Park Chan-wook and Park Chan-kyong, South Korea) PERIODICO DE CATALUNYA AUDIENCE AWARD “Attack the Block” JOSE LUIS GUARNER CRITICS’ AWARD “Attack the Block” CITIZEN KANE AWARD TO AN UP-AND-COMING DIRECTOR Ex aequo: “El Paramo” (Jaime Osorio, Argentina, Colombia, Spain) and “Hard Labor” (Juliana Rojas and Marco Dutra, Brazil)
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