Fantasia 2017 Comes to a Close: Winners For All Categories Announced - Dread Central
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Fantasia 2017 Comes to a Close: Winners For All Categories Announced



The 2017 Fantasia Film Festival, which takes place in Montreal, Quebec, has wrapped its three-week run and is now celebrating one of its most successful years ever! The festival attracted nearly 100,000 spectators for 220 indoor screenings, two outdoor screenings, twelve virtual reality films, and numerous sold-out special events.

We have coverage, interviews, and reviews from Fantasia, all of which can be seen right here.

All the winners of the festival have been announced and we’ve got the full list for you to check out below!


The Fantasia International Film Festival is deeply proud to announce the names of its 21st edition’s Juried Award Winners.

The festival’s Best Film Award was presented to Agnieszka Holland’s gripping crime thriller SPOOR (POKOT). The subversive Polish masterpiece was previously selected to compete for the Golden Bear at the 67th Berlin International Film Festival and won that festival’s Alfred Bauer Prize.

The awards in each of Fantasia’s categories were chosen by carefully selected juries of filmmakers, scholars, journalists, and industry professionals.

Cheval Noir Award

Best Film: SPOOR (POKOT), d. Agnieszka Holland
Best Director: Nattawut Poonpiriya, BAD GENIUS
Best Screenplay: Marianna Palka, BITCH
Best Actor: Song Kang-ho, A TAXI DRIVER
Best Actress: Violetta Schurwlow, COLD HELL (DIE HÖLLE)
Special Mention: LOWLIFE, d. Ryan Prows

Filmmaker Richard Stanley presided over the 2017 Cheval Noir Jury, which was comprised of critics Chris Bumbray and Paul Kazee, and filmmaker/author Shelagh Rowan-Legg.

Says the jury, “”Veteran writer and director Agnieszka Holland’s late season masterwork is not only a sumptuously photographed and compellingly crafted forensic thriller but a genuinely radical work of cinema, interrogating timely themes of gender, animal rights and humanity’s precarious relationship with nature, issues that are dear to our hearts here at Fantasia. We are proud to honor a film maker working at the very height of her provocative talents.

The Cheval Noir jury also awarded a special prize to LOWLIFE, for “audaciousness, energy, and perfectly embodying the anarchic Fantasia spirit.”

New Flesh Award for Best First Feature

Best Film: SPLIT, d. Choi Kook-hee
Special Mention: NIGHT OF THE VIRGIN (LA NOCHE DEL VIRGEN), d. Roberto San Sebastian

Filmmaker William Lustig presided over the 2017 New Flesh Jury, which was comprised of writer/producer Katarina Gligorijevic, journalist Jason Gorber, producer Joshua Sobel, and distributor Antoine Zeind.

Says the jury, “For itssurprising sweetness, its assured direction, and its intense collision between sports film and crime drama that feels like THE BIG LEBOWSKI meets RAIN MAN with balls, and with characters that never stray outside their lane and have heart to spare, the jury was bowled over by SPLIT.”

The New Flesh Jury also awarded a special prize to NIGHT OF THE VIRGIN, for “its scatological sophistication, its wry look at relationships, and sly political messaging fueled by a gonzo spirit. This cautionary yet endearing tale of lust earns the Jury’s special mention for unabashed weirdness and button-pushing bravado.”

Action! Award

Mention: JAILBREAK, d. Jimmy Henderson

The 2017 Action! Jury was comprised of producer Hughes Barbier, filmmaker Érik Canuel, and programmer Peter Kuplowsky.

Says the jury, “We couldn’t take our eyes off of CONFIDENTIAL ASSIGNMENT’s kickass action choreography and were captivated by its fun and funny script, putting the film above its contenders. In the vein of Walter Hill’s RED HEAT, CONFIDENTIAL ASSIGNMENT brings back the late 80’s action comedy with a splash, and we hope audiences will enjoy it as much as we did.”

The Action! Jury also awarded a special prize to JAILBREAK, “for its inspired fight and camera choreography. The filmmakers achieve a rare and innovative alchemy between camera and cast, that transforms the operator from observer to literal combatant.”

AQCC-Camera Lucida Award

Winner: A GHOST STORY, d. David Lowery
Special Mention: TOWN IN A LAKE (MATANGTUBIG), d. Jet Leyco

Journalist/professor Donato Totoro presided over the 2017 AQCC-Camera Lucida Jury, which was comprised of programmer Paul Landriau and AQCC vice-president Jean-Marie Lanlo.

The jury awarded A GHOST STORY their top honor, “for its nuanced cinematic treatment of material and spiritual time across human landscape.”

The AQCC-Camera Lucida Jury also awarded a special prize to TOWN IN A LAKE “for the facility in which the filmmaker invites the viewer to discover a world progressively veering toward the supernatural.”

Séquences Award

Best Film: BAD GENIUS, d. Nattawut Poonpiriya

Critic Pascal Grenier presided over the 2017 Prix Séquences Jury, which was comprised of critic/filmmaker Mathieu Houle-Beausoleil and critic Maxime Labrecque.

Says the jury, “For its clever mixture of suspense and humor, skillful approach to the theme of manipulation, and for its complex staging, we are proud to present the Séquences Award for Best Film to BAD GENIUS.”

The Barry Convex Award for Best Canadian Film

Best Film: POOR AGNES, d. Navin Ramaswaran
Special Mention: ORIGAMI, d. Patrick Demers

The 2017 Barry Convex Jury was comprised of critic/author Kier-la Janisse, filmmaker Douglas Buck, and filmmaker George Mihalka.

Administered by Spectacular Optical with support from the Paul A. Ray Memorial Fund, The Barry Convex Award is an annual juried prize for which all Canadian features or co-productions making their World, International, North American, or Canadian Premiere at Fantasia are eligible.

Says the jury, “Navin Ramaswaran’s POOR AGNES was chosen to represent the 2017 Barry Convex Award not only for its impressive direction, darkly comic storytelling and overall unified vision, but for its challenging attitude. Coming out of a country with a system where voices of subversion against, and challenges to, the mainstream status quo are few and far between — and yet more important than ever – POOR AGNES acts as a daring and powerful middle finger against establishment filmmaking.”

The Barry Convex Jury also awarded a special prize to ORIGAMI for “its deft direction, sophisticated visual aesthetic, strong performances, and the successful blending of genres in a complex story told in a refreshingly unconventional manner.”

Axis: The Satoshi Kon Award for Excellence in Animation

Feature: HAVE A NICE DAY (HAO JI LE), d. Liu Jian
Special Mention (Feature): JUNK HEAD, d. Takahide Hori

Short Film: COCOLORS, d. Yokoshima Toshihisa
Special Mention (Short): YIN, d. Nicolas Fong

The 2017 Axis Jury was comprised of director Greg Bailey, graphic novelist Dave Cooper, director Nadja Cozic, and cartoonist Jean Lacombe.

Says the jury, “HAVE A NICE DAY stands out for the implacable mechanic of its script, its acute dialog, and for the quality of its voice talent” and, referring to the short film winner, COLOLORS, “It clearly stood out above the other films in the category. Great animation, design, story, voices, backgrounds, and sound. There are a number of scenes that will always be etched in our memory.”

The Axis Jury also awarded a special prize to JUNK HEAD, “to acknowledge the tremendous work accomplished in the making of this movie as well as the artistic direction that seduced us” and another of YIN, noting, “The animation is amazingly inspired, inventive and fluid, drawing us effortless from one imaginative, visual surprise to the next.”

International Short Film Competition Award

Best Short Film: iMEDIUM, d. Alfonso García

Filmmaker Gary Sherman presided over the 2017 Short Film Jury, which was comprised of filmmaker Aisling Chin-Yee and Vimeo curator Ina Pira.

Says the jury, “The direction by Alfonso Garcia, the script by Vincet Blonde, the frantic cinematography of Jesus Velez, Sebastian Roque’s music, J.L Canalejo’s sound design, and Jose Bermudez’s stellar performance all blended perfectly together to create an emotionally charged, frightening six minutes. From the opening graphics, one could not divert their attention from the screen. As frenetically as the film begins, it manages to build in intensity and never back off. All of us on the jury were astounded by this feat.”

Fantasia 2017’s Audience Awards, presented by the festivals thousands of genre-loving patrons, are as follows:

Best Asian Feature Film
– BAD GENIUS (Gold Prize)
– A DAY (Bronze Prize)

Best North American, South American, or European Feature Film
– LOWLIFE (Silver Prize)
– MAYHEM (Bronze Prize)

Best Canadian / Quebec Feature Film
– DEAD SHACK (Silver Prize)
– GAME OF DEATH (Bronze Prize)

The GURU Prize for Best Action Feature Film
– JEAILBREAK (Gold Prize)
– THE VILLAINESS (Silver Prize)
– ATOMIC BLONDE (Bronze Prize)

Most Innovative Feature Film
– BAD GENIUS (Gold Prize)
– THE LAPALCE’S DEMON (Silver Prize)
– JAILBREAK (Bronze Prize)

Best Animated Feature Film
– LU OVER THE WALL (Silver Prize)

Best Documentary Feature Film
– KING COHEN (Gold Prize)
– 78/52 (Silver Prize)
– GEEK GIRLS (Bronze Prize)

Best International Short Film
– RUE (Gold Prize)
– NOCTURNALLY YOURS / FLOW (Bronze Prize – tie)

Best Canadian or Quebec Short Film
– NO WAVE (Silver Prize)

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Syfy Renews Z Nation for a 5th Season; Season 4 Finale Airs Tonight!



Syfy’s popular zombie series “Z Nation” just keeps shambling on, and tonight the two-episode Season 4 finale, “Mt. Weather/The Black Rainbow,” airs. If you’re a fan of the show, we have good news for you… it’s not over yet as David Latt of The Asylum has announced on Twitter the pickup of “Z Nation” for a 5th season! So you can expect lots more adventures with the gang in 2018.

Below is the official word from David along with a brief synopsis of what’s ahead tonight in the finale, which kicks off at 9/8c.


In the mind-bending two-hour Season 4 finale, Warren and the team must stop Zona from launching operation Black Rainbow, which will cleanse the landscape of both zombies and humans. In Part 2 the secret of Warren’s Black Rainbow dream is unlocked when they reach their final destination. The cast includes Kellita Smith as Roberta Warren, Keith Allan as Murphy, Russell Hodgkinson as Doc, Nat Zang as 10K, Gracie Gillam as Sgt. Lilley, DJ Qualls as Citizen Z, Ramona Young as Kaya, Justin Torrence as President Donald Trump, Michael Berryman as The Founder, Micheal Daks as Mr. Sunshine, Anastasia Baranova as Addy, Sydney Viengluang as Sun Mei, Joseph Gatt as The Man, and Natalie Jongjaroenlarp as Red.

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First Look at Chris Alexander’s Space Vampire



Who says all vampires have to be all extra-broody or sparkly or take up residence in Transylvania? Certainly not indie filmmaker Chris Alexander, who has just unveiled the first images and posters for his latest foray into film, Space Vampire!

The movie stars Ali Chappell as a beautiful female alien parasite who falls to earth with an intent to drain women of their life forces. As if women don’t have enough problems in this day and age!

Alexander wrote, directed, edited, filmed, and even provided the score for this intergalactic terror tale. Talk about a jack of all trades, eh?

Enough talk! Dig in!

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Rob Zombie Narrates Charles Manson’s Last Words to a Wider Audience



Charles Manson. The name alone lives on in infamy even long after his physical remains lay rotting… and rightly so. A new docudrama entitled Charles Manson: The Final Words is on its way, and we have new details and behind-the-scenes imagery for you. Check it out!

The flick made its premiere on the REELZ Channel, and Breakthrough Entertainment has announced that they’ve acquired worldwide distribution rights to the project that features narration from Rob Zombie and is home to the final interview given by America’s most notorious and now deceased cult-leader and mass murderer, Charles Manson.

The opportunity that we have to offer this distinct and truly unique documentary to our international clients is beyond exciting for Breakthrough Entertainment,” said Craig McGillivray, Vice President, Distribution at Breakthrough Entertainment. “We are continuously focused on sourcing captivating new premium content that pushes the envelope and generates mass attention such as this amazing film from James Buddy Day and Pyramid Productions.

The two-hour film narrated by musician Zombie focuses on the so-called Manson family murders told from Manson’s perspective using never-before-seen case files, pictures, and exclusive interviews with Manson himself from inside California State Prison. The feature documentary reveals new details that unveil the true story and motives behind the grisly murder spree. The audio used in the doc contains the last recorded interviews with the infamous killer conducted by director and producer James Buddy Day.

It has been a truly distinct project for us and an experience that very few producers encounter. This film has the potential to captivate global audiences, and we are very excited to have Breakthrough Entertainment on board to share this one-of-a-kind documentary,” says James Buddy Day, Executive Producer at Pyramid Productions.

Look for more on this one soon!

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