The dramatic feature "Beasts of the Southern Wild" and the documentary "The House I Live In" won the top jury prizes at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival.
"Beasts of the Southern Wild," Benh Zeitlin's trippy bayou drama set in South Louisiana and starring a collection of non-actors, was the festival's most buzzed-about film since it debuted on the festival's second day. Fox Searchlight acquired the film earlier this week.
Eugene Jarecki's "The House I Live In" is a look at the failures of the U.S. war on drugs. It observes that the policy has accounted for 45 million arrests, made America the world's largest jailer and destroyed impoverished communities at home and abroad.
Kirby Dick's searing documentary "The Invisible War," about widespread rape in the military, and Ben Lewin's John Hawkes/Helen Hurt drama "The Surrogate" won the top audience awards. "The Surrogate," acquired for $6 million by Fox Searchlight, stars Hawkes as a man confined to an iron lung who hires a professional sex surrogate.
Films that received multiple awards at the ceremony in Park City included "The Surrogate," which won the audience award and was also given a special jury prize for its ensemble cast.
"Searching for Sugar Man," the documentary acquired by Sony Pictures Classics, won a World Cinema audience award and a special jury prize. And "Beasts" was honored for its cinematography in addition to winning the top jury prize in the dramatic competition.
The complete list of winners:
Grand Jury Prize, Documentary: "The House I Live In" World Cinema Jury Prize, Dramatic: "Beasts of the Southern Wild" World Cinema Jury Prize, Dramatic: "Violeta Went to Heaven" World Cinema Jury Prize, Documentary: "The Law in These Parts"
Audience Award, Documentary: "The Invisible War" Audience Award, Dramatic: "The Surrogate" World Cinema Audience Award, Documentary: "Searching for Sugar Man" World Cinema Audience Award, Dramatic: "Valley of Saints"