Beaufort International Film Festival names winners

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The 11th Annual Beaufort International Film Festival is in the books. 

A champagne gala reception and awards ceremony was held recently, where filmmaker Julie Dash was awarded the inaugural Robert Smalls Merit & Achievement Award. The award was presented by the great-great grandson of Robert Smalls, Michael Boulware Moore. 

Thousands of filmmakers, film lovers and fans of the festival showed up to experience some or all of the five-day film festival. More than 300 entries were received from nearly 44 countries, which were narrowed down to the screening of 39 films and seven screenplays. Awards were presented in 12 categories.

Charleston Filmmaker Brad Jayne was presented the Behind the Scenes Award. South Carolina Film Office representative Tom Clark was on hand to present the award.

Other winners include:

• Best Feature: “Saturn Returns,” directed by Shawn Tolleson, Vancouver, BC.

• Best Documentary: “Robert Shaw: Man of Many Voices,” co-directed by Peter Miller, New York, and Pamela Roberts, Atlanta.

• Best Short Film: “Mia,” directed by Felix Martiz, Los Angeles.

• Best Student Film: “Icarus,” directed by Tom Teller, Chapman University, Dodge College, Orange, Calif.

• Best Comedy: “Long John,” directed by Joe Bellavia, Rochester, N.Y.

• Best Animation: “Splash,” directed by Gavin Lankford, Winston-Salem, N.C.

• Best Screenplay: “Robert Smalls’ Great Escape,” written by Bernard Smith, Mandeville, La.

• Best Actress: Rukiyat Masud, New York, “Children of the Mountain.”

• Best Actor: Thomas Torrey, Fort Mill, “Fare.”

• Best Director: Thomas Torrey, Fort Mill, “Fare”

• Audience Choice: “Almost Paris,” Director Domenica Cameron Scorsese, Chicago.

The Beaufort International Film Festival is produced by the Beaufort Film Society. 


Meet & Greet

The Beaufort Film Society will hold a free meet-and-greet from 5-7 p.m. Thursday, May 25, at Wined It Up at 705 Bay St. in Beaufort.

There will be entertainment and guests are encouraged to bring a family member, neighbor or anyone who wants to learn more about the Beaufort Film Society. Visit or