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ABFF Announce Their 2014 Winners

The cast of ‘Muted,’ The HBO Short Film Award winner.

Film Life’s 18th annual American Black Film Festival (ABFF) announced the winners of their independent film awards in the Metropolitan Pavilion in New York City on June 22, 2014.
Nominated for six awards, Alton Glass’ CRU took home five, including wins for Best Film, director, screenplay, and actor.The HBO Short Film Award was given to ‘Muted,’ which was directed by Rachel Goldberg and written/produced by Brandi Ford. The $10,000 grand prize award was presented by Dennis Williams, Vice President, Cultural and Social Responsibility of HBO and Bev Smith.This year’s HBO Star Project two grand-prize winners are Kimberley Dalton Mitchell, a Rural Hall, North Carolina native and Stefan Dezil from Long Island, New York. The award was presented by Karen Horne, vice president, Programming Talent Development and Inclusion for NBC Entertainment and Universal Television Studios.

Star Project is an international acting competition for emerging multicultural artists. The winners are afforded the opportunity to audition for a leading casting director and one person will be selected to participate in a walk on role on the award-winning NBC daytime drama ‘Days of Our Lives.’

In the Up Faith and Family Screenplay Competition, the winner was Christopher Brandt of Los Angeles, California for his feature film screenplay entitled, ‘Island in the Sun.’ The $5000 Grand Prize award was presented by Barbara Fisher, SVP, Original Programming for UP TV and DeEtta West.

The award for best documentary was given to ‘25 to Life,’ directed by Mike L. Brown. The award was presented by a CNN spokesperson.

The winner of the ABFF Webisode Challenge was Close Friends, created by Ricky W. Jean-Francois amd McKinson Souverain.

Presented by Courtney Jones and Cindy Smith of Nielsen, the Audience Award for Best Film was a tie, given to Alton Glass’s CRU and Richie Adams’ Una Vida.

The Grand Jury Prize for Best Performance by an Actor was given to Keith Robinson for his performance in ‘CRU.’ ‘ The award was presented by Brett Wright, Uptown Magazine co-founder and co-CEO.

Best Performance by an Actress was given to Aunjanue Ellis for her performance in ‘Una Vida.
Presented by actor Omari Hardwick and ABFF Founder Jeff Friday, the Grand Jury Award for Best Screenplay was given to Alton Glass and Oliver W. Ottley III, co-writers of ‘CRU.’

Glass also had the pleasure of winning the Grand Jury Prize for Best Director. Presented by Cadillac and introduced by Morris Chestnut, Glass will receives film stock valued at $5000.

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