CHIPPED tops Awards for 2023 SGFF

Filmmaker Costa Karalis took home the Best of Fest award for his film CHIPPED at Sunday’s award ceremony for the 2023 South Georgia Film Festival.

Karalis joined numerous Georgia and Florida filmmakers attending the festival. His film CHIPPED was a horror film about a man with a hammer climbing through a window to break teeth.

Zach Breder won for Best of Georgia Film with LEVEL 34, which was made in collaboration with Trilith Studios, Georgia Film Academy, Make-A-Wish, and numerous Atlanta professional filmmakers volunteering. Trinity Ansath was also in attendance to receive her award for Best Georgia Animation with her film OVERCOME. The Decatur filmmaker is a graduate of Savannah College of Art & Design. Through her art, she hopes to put back into the world the same creative energy she received as a child and hopes to inspire the next generation to live life with peace and kindness towards others.

THE BUICK SPECIAL, produced in Quitman, was recognized by the Judges for Excellence in Production Value. Director and VSU alum Levi Johnson wasn’t able to attend the awards ceremony, but producer Honnie Korngold accepted in his absence.

Other winners include:

Best Documentary Feature: JACK HAS A PLAN by director Bradley Berman
Best Narrative Feature: STAY WITH ME by director Marty Lang
Best Animated Feature: OPAL by Alan Bidard
Best Animated Short Film: MIXI by Jyotsna Puthran
Best Documentary Short: HEARTBREAK COUNTRY by Edward Tyndall
Best Narrative Short: NORDO by Kyle Taubken
Best Georgia Narrative Short: COULD THIS HAVE BEEN AN EMAIL by Nicole Kember and Sarah Alison Hodges
Best Graduate Student Film: LIGHTS by Adel Palotas (from Budapest Metropolitan University)
Best Georgia Graduate Student Film : OUTCAST EVERLASTING by Anna Valdez (from Kennesaw State University)
Best Undergraduate Student Film: BLAST OFF by Kelly Mowei Wang (Cal Arts)
Best International Student Documentary: LOCKDOWN TALE by Marie Trudolubova and filmmaker Cameron Carr
Best High School Student Film: Hayden Grant & Joseph Weber (Thomas Downey High School, Modesto, CA)
Judges’ Filmmaker to Watch: Bryn Wright for MOSQUITO FISH
Judges’ Award for Production Value: THE BUICK SPECIAL from director Levi Johnson
Judges’ Award for Best Child Actor: Jai Ram Srinivasan from ANDY & KALIOPE

The 7th Annual South Georgia Film Festival had crowds all weekend long. Attendees for Friday’s special screening of THE HOLIDAY DATING GUIDE were treated by filmmaker Alexander Kane to dinner from Golden Corrall. Along with those in attendance, Friday’s meal was served to students from VSU’s Honors College and the College Assistance Migrants Program, staff at the Valdosta Mall, along with City of Valdosta Police and Firefighters.

Kane and Korngold hosted Saturday’s incredibly successful Pitchfest, which featured a dozen participants working to make their TV/Film project dreams come true. Producers in attendance were so impressed with the ideas that six people received cash prizes but the big winner of $250 and a producers consultation was Buffy Thomas of Atlanta.

VIP and Festival passholders have access to the festival films all week on the Eventive platform. Festival film blocks can be rented for $5 a piece during that time as well at

The South Georgia Film Festival is proudly sponsored by Georgia Power, Valdosta State University, South Georgia Studios, the Georgia Film Office, the Valdosta Mall, Wild Adventures Theme Park, Workhorse Cinema, VLPRA,, the City of Valdosta, and Film Impact Georgia.

Submissions for the 2024 South Georgia Film Festival will begin in April.

For more information on the South Georgia Film Festival, visit or . Contact Prof. Jason Brown at 229-219-1298 or

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