Tribeca 2012: Michael Moore Praises Tribeca Winners, Casual Attire

"You can come to closing night in hoodie," he tells THR. "You don’t do that at Cannes.”

There was a steady stream of black Cadillac Escalade ESU SUV-style limos letting off guests at the Conrad New York Hotel Thursday night for the announcements and party celebrating the winners at the 11th annual Tribeca Film Festival.

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Among those attending was documentary juror Michael Moore who said one particular aspect he enjoys about Tribeca is that “you can come to closing night in hoodie. You don’t do that at Cannes.”

Moore said he was surprised by how impressed he was by The Flat, the Israeli film that won best editing in a documentary feature (“I didn’t think it was the kind of film I’d like)” and The Zen of Bennett, the documentary on Tony Bennett. “He allowed the cameras into his process in a way that artists very rarely do,” said the filmmaker.

A consistent comment among the jurors was how much they enjoyed Una Noche, the Cuban film about young men in Havana dreaming about fleeing the island.

“It’s amazing that the Cuban authorities allowed a film that showed all sides of Cuba to be made,” said juror Jim Sheridan. Dariel Arrechada and Javier Nuñez Florian were named best actors in a narrative film and split the $2500 prize.

Juror Patrica Clarkson, who was standing with Sheridan, joked that the award voting process was smooth “other than Jim getting naked and dancing around.”

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The awards end the competition part of the fest, though there are more programs and screenings over the weekend, including The Avengers on April 28. In describing the fest, jury president Irwin Winkler said it’s “more independent that Sundance, that’s become more commercial” and co-founder Jane Rosenthal said “everybody tries to put this festival in a box, but it’s just all about movies.”

Tribeca’s Chief Creative Officer Geoff Gilmore said that now the fest is winding down all he can do “is feel a sense of gratitude for the filmmakers and what they do.”

As a fest veteran with decades of experience, Gilmore said when it comes to movies, “it’s easy to be jaded and think we’ve seen it all, but we haven’t.”