In Movies & TV

Milwaukee Film announced the 2017 festival broke attendance and sellout records.

Milwaukee Film announces new attendance record, audience award winners

Anyone who attended the Milwaukee Film Festival earlier this month knows it was a hit – whether you're grading it based on the quality of the movies on the screen or the number of fellow movie fans surrounding you in the seats. Today, however, Milwaukee Film released the official numbers to prove it.

This year, the Milwaukee Film Festival drew 84,072 movie lovers, a nine percent increase from 2016 as well as a new attendance record for the two-week cinema event. That number also includes 101 sold-out screenings, a bump-up from last year's 87.

Milwaukee Film wasn't the only winner today, however, as the festival tallied up your votes from all of its 342 screenings and announced its 2017 Allen H. (Bud) and Suzanne L. Selig Audience Award winners: Erik Ljung's Dontre Hamilton documentary "The Blood is at the Doorstep" on the feature side of things, as well as Jon Bunning's ping-pong doc "The Tables" – a part of the festival's "Stranger Than Fiction" program – from the short film selections.

The rest of the festival's jury award winners were announced on Oct. 8 and include:

Abele Catalyst Award

Brico Fund

Black Lens Jury Award ($5,000 cash)

"Dear Mr. Shakespeare"

Special mention: "Unrest"

2017 Brico Forward Fund Recipients ($50,000 cash and $60,000+ in production services)

"The Sacred and the Snake"

  • $20,000 cash and legal consultation from Dan Kattman of Reinhart Boerner van Deuren, s.c.

"Wander"

  • $10,000 cash and legal consultation from Dan Kattman of Reinhart Boerner van Deuren, s.c.

"Dying of Thirst"

  • $7,500 cash, $10,000 from North American Camera, $2,500 from Independent, and legal consultation from Dan Kattman of Reinhart Boerner van Deuren, s.c.

"Pet Names"

  • $5,000 cash, $5,000 from Independent, and legal consultation from Dan Kattman of Reinhart Boerner van Deuren, s.c.

"A Grave Situation"

  • $2,500 cash, $5,000 from North American Camera, $2,500 from Independent, $5,000 from Electric Sun, and legal consultation from Dan Kattmann of Reinhart Boerner van Deuren, s.c.

"In Pursuit of the Stars"

  • $2,500 cash, $5,000 from North American Camera, $2,500 from Independent, $5,000 from Electric Sun, and legal consultation from Dan Kattmann of Reinhart Boerner van Deuren, s.c.

"The Inhabitants"

  • $10,000 from Electric Sun, four studio days at Steinhafels Studios, and legal consultation from Dan Kattmann of Reinhart Boerner van Deuren, s.c.

"Operation Wolf Patrol: The Rod Coronado Story"

  • $2,500 cash, $7,500 from Independent, and legal consultation from Dan Kattmann of Reinhart Boerner van Deuren, s.c.

"The Stolie Tippers"

  • Two studio days at Steinhafels Studios and legal consultation from Dan Kattmann of Reinhart Boerner van Deuren, s.c.

Cream City Cinema College Filmmaker Award ($2,500 cash)

"ANGELAAA"

Cream City Cinema Jury Award ($5,000 cash)

"Scott Road"

Special mentions: "Deer Queen," "Manlife" and "Seeking Century City"

Documentary Jury Award ($5,000 cash)

"Quest"

Herzfeld Competition Award ($10,000 cash)

"Rat Film"

Special mention: "Stranger In Paradise"

Kids Choice Short Film Award ($1,000 cash)

"Litterbugs"

Special mentions: "Lemonade Mafia" and "Little Bird and the Caterpillar (Der Kleine Vogel Und Die Raupe)"

Milwaukee Music Video Award ($5,000 cash)

"Locals" by IshDARR

Pitch Us Your Film! Contest ($2,500 cash)

"Rawspace"

Shorter Is Better Award ($1,000 cash)

"The Burden"

Special mention for Best Documentary Short: "Little Potato"

Special mention for Best Screenwriting: "All Exchanges Final"

Special mention for Best Directing: "Make a Wish"

The bad news is, with this announcement, the 2017 Milwaukee Film Festival is officially over. The good news, however, is that several of the festival's tremendous selections are available elsewhere – on DVD, Netflix, other streaming platforms or even in theaters in the case of the hypnotically gorgeous drama "Columbus" (at the Oriental Theatre through Thursday night) and the late, great Harry Dean Stanton's sweet swan song "Lucky" (coming to the Times Cinema beginning Friday).

The best news? Next year, we'll get to do all of this all over again. Let the countdown begin!

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