LAFF hands out top prizes
‘Out of My Hand’ takes U.S. Fiction award and ‘My Love’ wins for documentary.
A drama about a Liberian plantation worker beginning a new life in New York City and a documentary about a Korean couple who have been married for 76 years claimed the top prizes at the Los Angeles Film Festival on Wednesday.
Takeshi Fukunaga’s “Out of My Hand” took home the U.S. Fiction award, and MoYoung Jin’s “My Love, Don’t Cross That River” won the Documentary Award. Both films made their North American premieres at the fest.
Beata Gardeler’s “Flocken” won the World Fiction Award (dedicated to international cinema), Delila Vallot’s “Can You Dig This” won the L.A. Muse Award (for work created about or in Los Angeles), Viet Nguyen’s “Crush the Skull” won the Nightfall Award (for genre film), and Bradley Kaplan’s “Stealing Cars” won the Zeitgeist Award (for films representing key trends).
Audience Awards were given to Michael Dwyer and Kaitlin McLaughlin’s narrative film “Pocha (Manifest Destiny)” and two documentaries (in a tie): Natalie Johns’ “I Am Thalente” and Lilibet Foster’s “Be Here Now.”
The LAFF, which is sponsored by the Los Angeles Times, will wrap up Thursday evening with screenings of several of the winning films and a live reading of “Fast Times at Ridgemont High” directed by Eli Roth.
Roth revealed the cast Wednesday. Lily Collins (“Mirror Mirror”) and Haley Joel Osment (“Entourage”) will play siblings Stacy and Brad Hamilton, the insecure sophomore and popular-ish senior played by Jennifer Jason Leigh and Judge Reinhold in the original.
Kumail Nanjiani (HBO’s “Silicon Valley”) will play would-be ladies’ man Mike Damone, Lorenza Izzo will portray the infamous bombshell Linda Barrett, and Daryl Sabara (“Spy Kids”) will play shy dork Mark Ratner.
Aaron Burns, who has worked with Roth on both sides of the camera, will play jock Charles Jefferson, and social-media celebrities Logan Paul and Nik Keswani will play stoner Jeff Spiccoli and his brother, Curtis.
Last but not least, rock musician Courtney Love is on board as the uptight teacher Mr. Hand.
In a statement to The Times, Roth said: “Everyone in the reading is going to bring something really spe- cial to their role. The original cast is so iconic you cannot replace them, but we can do a really fun alternate version of the movie with everyone interpreting the characters in their own unique way.”
DELILA VALLOT’S documentary “Can You Dig This” won the festival’s L.A. Muse Award.