Jack Paccione, Jr. Took Second Place in Inaugural Competition Last July with His First-Ever Film; Returns to Win Grand Prize with New Film. Amazon.com Customers Determined the Winner; Founding Partner American Express Provides $50,000 Grand Prize
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NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)—November 3, 2005—Amazon.com, Inc. (Nasdaq:AMZN), American Express and Tribeca Film Festival founders Robert De Niro, Jane Rosenthal, and Craig Hatkoff, today announced that Jack Paccione, Jr. is the grand-prize winner of the second Amazon Theater/Tribeca Film Festival Short-Film Competition for “Duel at Red Table,” an action/comedy/horror film crafted around the ancient sport of table tennis. Last July, Paccione came in second place in the inaugural Amazon/Tribeca short-film competition with his first-ever film, “Misfortune Cookie.”
Today, Paccione received $50,000 from American Express to fund his next film project. The budget for "Duel at Red Table" was $400. "If you had asked me in June what the greatest ride in the world was I would have said Great Adventures Kingda Kah. That answer's changed now." Paccione encourages viewers to "Please have a good time watching 'Duel'! There are too many movies out there that bring us back to reality when they should be taking us away from it."
The finalists and their families gathered in New York City today for the film presentation and award ceremony. Actor, writer, director and photographer, Matthew Modine; award-winning actor and filmmaker John Polson; renowned author Clara Bingham; and NBC journalist Perri Peltz were among the guests in attendance.
Jane Rosenthal, co-founder, Tribeca Productions and Film Festival along with Kathy Savitt, Amazon.com vice president of Strategic Communications, Content and Initiatives commended each filmmaker for their creativity, commitment to filmmaking and for participating in the competition. Nancy Smith, vice-president of marketing for American Express, presented the award.
“Amazon created this short-film program with the goal of discovering the next great filmmaker,” said Savitt. “The fact that Paccione’s films were among the highest rated among thousands of films not once, but twice, is a true testament to his talent as well as his appeal to Amazon customers.”
“As an organization that strives to enable creative endeavors, and as the Festival's founding sponsor, American Express is thrilled to be part of this short film competition-- another avenue for the filmmaking community to share its voice, and reach new audiences," said Smith.
The finalists were determined by Amazon.com customers, who submitted thousands of ratings and viewed hundreds of hours of film footage between August 26 and September 23. On October 4, the five finalist films with the highest ratings were featured on the Amazon.com welcome page over a period of four weeks. Again, Amazon.com customers rated the five finalists to determine the overall winner of the Amazon Theater/Tribeca Film Festival Short-Film Competition.
Other finalist films included:
"Battaglia," directed and produced by Owen Smith, screenplay by Jeff Rose: A loving tribute to writer Jeff Rose's grandfather and other Americans in the 88th Infantry Division who fought bravely for their country during World War II. Concept, pre-production, photography and post-production all took place within two weeks.
"Coming Home," written, directed and produced by Greg Benson: Inspired by Woody Allen, Spike Jonze and Monty Python, this comedy was based on a dream and shot in one evening with a budget of $10. No one expects to come home to this.
"Meter Maids," written, directed and produced by Joseph Garner: A comedy set in the cutthroat world of parking enforcement officers, this film was inspired by its creator's massive accumulation of parking tickets throughout his life, and his belief that parking tickets are a threat to society. Message to viewers: learn from past mistakes.
"Richter's Agenda," directed by Paul Matusheski: A suspenseful thriller influenced by the work of Alfred Hitchcock, in which a college student is terrorized by a sadistic computer hacker when she accepts a seemingly innocent instant message. This film was written, produced and edited in 24 hours.
Macromedia Flash is the exclusive video format for the Amazon Theater/Tribeca Film Festival Short-Film Competition.
Delta Air Lines is the official airline for the Amazon Theater/Tribeca Film Festival Short-Film Competition.
About Tribeca Film Festival
The Tribeca Film Festival was founded by Robert De Niro, Jane Rosenthal and Craig Hatkoff to celebrate New York City as a major filmmaking capital. Tribeca Cinemas, located at 54 Varick Street, was acquired by the Festival founders in 2003 and serves as a year-round venue for the Festival and its related activities.
The 2005 Festival, presented by American Express, took place from April 19th to May 1st in various locations throughout lower Manhattan. The 2005 Festival featured special events, outdoor concerts and screenings, a street fair, and panel discussions with noted filmmakers.
Amazon.com, Inc., a Fortune 500 company based in Seattle, opened on the World Wide Web in July 1995 and today offers Earth's Biggest Selection. Amazon.com seeks to be Earth's most customer-centric company, where customers can find and discover anything they might want to buy online, and endeavors to offer its customers the lowest possible prices. Amazon.com and other sellers offer millions of unique new, refurbished and used items in categories such as beauty, health and personal care, jewelry and watches, gourmet food, sports and outdoors, apparel and accessories, books, music, DVDs, electronics and office, toys and baby, and home and garden.
As used herein, "Amazon.com," "we," "our" and similar terms include Amazon.com, Inc., and its subsidiaries, unless the context indicates otherwise.
Forward Looking Statement
This announcement contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Actual results may differ significantly from management's expectations. These forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties that include, among others, risks related to potential future losses, significant amount of indebtedness, competition, management of growth, potential fluctuations in operating results, international expansion, outcomes of legal proceedings and claims, fulfillment center optimization, seasonality, commercial agreements, acquisitions, and strategic transactions, foreign exchange rates, system interruption, consumer trends, inventory, limited operating history, government regulation and taxation, fraud, and new business areas. More information about factors that potentially could affect Amazon.com's financial results is included in Amazon.com's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2004, and all subsequent filings.
About American Express
American Express has been the Founding Sponsor of the Festival since its inception in 2002. Part of a multi-year relationship, the sponsorship demonstrates American Express' dedication to the goals of the Festival and the revitalization of lower Manhattan.