New York Times - Metropolitan Desk, 12 May 2003
Elvis Mitchell

Curtain Goes Down as the TriBeCa Film Festival Packs a Crowd

The second annual TriBeCa Film Festival, which concluded yesterday, notched a big uptick in attendance over the weekend as eager audiences thronged the venues showing the fiction and documentary pictures. The winners, selected by a wide-ranging mix of jurors that included the actresses Whoopi Goldberg and Parker Posey, the filmmakers Nora Ephron and Stephen Gaghan, and the playwright Jon Robin Baitz, were announced yesterday at Stuyvesant High School.

The award for best narrative feature went to Li Yang for ''Blind Shaft,'' a tense melodrama about a pair of miners whose scraping to get by eventually brings them to the brink of murder. The best documentary award was given to the directors Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Hugo Berkeley for ''a normal life,'' a sobering examination of a group of young Albanian Kosovars returning home.

The Emerging Narrative Feature Filmmaker award went to Valeria Bruni Tedeschi for her atmospheric drama ''It Is Easier for a Camel . . . (Il Est Plus Facile Pour un Chameau . . .),'' for which she was also named best actress. The award for best actor was shared by Ohad Knoller, for ''Yossi & Jagger,'' the Israeli film about two gay lovers in the Israeli Army, and Igor Bares, for ''Some Secrets (Vylet).''

Mohamed Zran was named the best Emerging Documentary Feature Filmmaker, for ''Song of the Millennium.''

Moslem Mansouri won the Best Documentary 2 Feature prize, for ''Trial (Mohakeme).''
Lars Daniel Krutzkoff Jacobsen won best narrative short film honors, for ''Precious Moments.'' Harvey Wang picked up the prize for best documentary short, for ''Milton Rogovin: The Forgotten Ones.''

Many of the competitors were first-time filmmakers, so the prizes, which include thousands of dollars in film stock and in-kind services, will be quite a boon

Copyright 2002 The New York Times Company