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'Uncle Boonmee' Director Wins RiverRun Fest's Inaugural Peter Brunette Award

The late THR film critic was a major supporter of the North Carolina event, which also honored French actor Mathieu Amalric, Djeneba Kone and the doc "Armadillo."

Thai filmmaker Apichatpong Weersethakul was the first recipient of the Peter Brunette Award for Best Director during Sunday's awards ceremony at the 13th Annual RiverRun International Film Festival in Winston-Salem, N.C.

Brunette was a film critic for The Hollywood Reporter and a professor at nearby Wake Forest University who died last year while attending the Taormina Film Festival in Sicily. Burnette was a major supporter of RiverRun.

Weersethakul's film, Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives, was the winner of the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival last year.

"We are extremely proud of the shorts and features we presented this year," said RiverRun Executive Director Andrew Rodgers. "Audiences responded very enthusiastically to our selections, supporting our belief that we'd put together our best lineup of films yet!"

In the festival's narrative category, Turkish filmmaker Semih Kaplanoglu's BAL (Honey) won for best picture and cinematography. Other narrative category winners were Mathieu Amalric, best actor for On Tour (France), and Djeneba Kone, best actress in for A Screaming Man (Chad, France & Belgium). The supporting actors of Crab Trap (Columbia & France) won a Special Jury Prize for Best Ensemble Cast.

The best documentary feature prize went to Janus Metz's Armadillo (Denmark), which follows a unit of Danish and British soldiers fighting in Afghanistan. The award for best director, documentary was awarded to Nicolas Philbert for his film Nenette (France). Naomi Kawase won best cinematography for the documentary competition for Genpin (Japan), which she also directed.

The festival also presented its first Altered States Audience Award for Best American Indie to to.get.her, directed and written by Erica Dunton. New to the festival this year, the Altered States section celebrates low-budget American filmmaking and featured six films this year.

The best documentary short prize was awarded to Surpriseville (UK), directed by Tim Travers Hawkins and filmed in Arizona. The Best Narrative Short prize went to The Award (Spain), directed by Leon Siminiani.

The festival ran from April 8 to 17 and featured 121 films from 32 countries.