It seems 2013 may very well be the year for Chilean directors. First Pablo Larraín’s critically acclaimed historical drama “No” receives a nod from the Academy for Best Foreign Language Film and now Santiago-born Sebastián Silva takes home the Directing Award for World Cinema Dramatic at the Sundance Festival for his drug-infused comedy “Crystal Fairy.”
While Silva also presented his thriller “Magic Magic” at the festival earlier this month, it was the film about a drug-loving Jaime (Michael Cera), a very nude woman known as Crystal Fairy (Gaby Hoffmann), and a trio of brothers’ journey around Chile in search of a hallucinogenic cactus that won audiences over.
“I think Silva always probably writes stories based on the emotional elements -- and that's really happened to him with "Crystal Fairy.” So he had the experience in his mind and I think he knew that the story he wanted to tell was an emotional one,” Cera told HuffPost’s Mike Ryan. “And he went from there and he had faith in what he was doing.”
The film focuses around the self-centered Jaime and his behavior toward his free-spirited companion. And despite its popularity it hadn't initially been intended to be Silva’s most prominent work this year, in fact the film was shot while Silva and Cera (who also starred in “Magic Magic”) were waiting for financing for the thriller, according to the actor.
And Mexican actor Gael García Bernal is also proving to be a big winner as the star of both the Oscar-nominated “No” and the immigration documentary “Who Is Dayani Cristal?,” which took the Cinematography Award for World Cinema Documentary at Sundance.
The film, directed by Marc Silver, sheds light on the perilous journey that immigrants must face with the hope of a better life across the Arizona desert -- and it’s Dayani Cristal’s failed and fatal odyssey to cross the border that inspired the film.
"We hear about this or we see it from a distance, but it's very rare you get to see it from first-hand experience," Bernal, who co-produced the film, told the audience after a screening according to the Associated Press.
Check out clips from Silva’s “Crystal Fairy” and “Who Is Dayani Cristal” below: