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Primer and Dig! triumph at Sundance 2004



Story by: Jack Foley

A LOW budget sci-fi thriller and a music documentary have won the top two prizes at this year's Sundance Film Festival.

Primer, a film about two men who invent a time travel machine, took the highly coveted Grand Jury Prize for best drama, while Dig!, which charts the rivalry of two rock musicians, won best documentary.

Speaking after the award was announced, Shane Carruth, who wrote and directed Primer for a mere $7,000 (£3,800) said he was 'stunned'.

His achievement was in stark contrast to director, Ondi Timoner, who took seven years to complete the documentary, which follows Anton Newcombe, of cult band the Brian Jonestown Massacre, and Dandy Warhols frontman, Courtney Taylor.

The awards were announced on Saturday night (January 24, 2004) and marked the end of the 11-day festival of independent film-making, in Park City, Utah.

The best director accolade went to Morgan Spurlock, who spent 30 days eating food that was only from McDonald's, and then chronicled its impact on his body, in Super Size Me.

While the audience award for dramatic films, which is chosen by Sundance movie-goers, went to Maria Full Of Grace, a Spanish-language story of a young Columbian woman who becomes a 'mule' for smuggling heroin into the US.

The film was written and directed by Joshua Marston, and features Catalina Sanino Moreno in the lead role.

Born Into Brothels, Ross Kauffman and Zana Briski's film about the children of prostitutes in Calcutta, won the audience prize for documentaries.

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