Organizers of the 2013 GI Film Festival are calling it "the best festival to date." Last month's event in Washington brought new highs in attendance, coverage and more.
More than 20 members of Congress – including Rep. Jeff Miller, chairman of the House Committee on Veterans' Affairs – attended a special congressional reception, the highest number yet. GIFF presented the GI Spirit Award, for philanthropic support of the troops, to actor Robert Davi and country singer Wynonna Judd, and the Veterans in Entertainment Award to actor (and veteran) Mark Valley.
50 independent films in all were screened. The filmmaker awards were presented to:
•Best Short Short: "Fallout," directed by Peter Carruthers
•Best Student Film: "Choice," directed by Michael Chan
•Best International Film: "Gefallen," directed by Christoph Schuler
•Best Narrative Short: "The Fifth Horseman," directed by Kari Barber
•Best Documentary Short: "The Real Inglorious Bastards," directed by Min Sook Lee
•Best Documentary Feature: "Honor Flight," directed by Dan Hayes
•Founder's Choice: "16 Photographs at Ohrdruf," directed by Matthew Nash
•GIFF sponsor The Military Channel presented an award to the documentary short "Veteran Nation," represented by producer James Carafano.
Visit the GIFF website (gifilmfestival.com) to see photos and more from the 2013 festival. The GI Film Festival is a 501c(3) nonprofit educational organization dedicated to sharing the military experience in and out of the arena of war. The Legion supports the festival via resolution  and presented co-founders Brandon Millett and Laura Law-Millett with the National Commander's Public Relations Award  at the Washington Conference in 2010.