Leal’s “Divine Divas” Wins Global Audience Award at South by Southwest Film Festival

Leandra Leal has global appeal…

The Brazilian actress-turned-director picked up the Global audience award at this year’s South by Southwest Film Festival for her documentary Divine Divas.

Leandra Leal

Leal first directorial effort pays tribute to several of the transvestite artists of Rio de Janeiro’s Rival theater, an establishment originally run by her grandfather. It was one of the first clubs to openly feature men dressed as women.

Divine DivasMeanwhile, the Stephanie Beatriz-starrer The Light of the Moon earned writer-director Jessica M. Thompson the Narrative Feature Competition audience award.

Here’s a look at all of this year’s audience award winners:

Narrative Feature Competition: “The Light of the Moon
,” directed by Jessica M. Thompson
Documentary Feature Competition: “Dealt
,” directed by Luke Korem\
Headliner: “Baby Driver,” directed by Edgar Wright
Narrative Spotlight: “Mr. Roosevelt.” directed by Noel Wells
Documentary Spotlight: “The Untold Tales of Armistead Maupin,” directed by Jennifer M. Kroot
Visions: “Becoming Bond,” directed by Josh Greenbaum
Midnighters: “68 Kill,” directed by Trent Haaga
”Dear White People,” directed by Justin Simien
24 Beats Per Second: “May It Last: A Portrait of the Avett Brothers,” directed by Judd Apatow and Michael Bonfiglio
Global: “Divine Divas,” directed by Leandra Leal
Festival Favorites: “The Big Sick
,” directed by Michael Showalter

Espinosa’s Sci-Fi Thriller “Life” to Close This Year’s South by Southwest Film Festival

Daniel Espinosa is breathing new Life into the Austin, Texas film scene.

The 39-year-old Chilean director’s sci-fi thriller Life, starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Ryan Reynolds, will be the closing title at this year’s South by Southwest Film Festival on March 18.

Daniel Espinosa

Life centers on an international space crew that discovers something wonderful on board until it no longer is.

Life will make its world premiere at the Zach Theatre with stars Gyllenhaal, Rebecca Ferguson and Reynolds in tow.

Life was penned by Deadpool writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick.

The movie opens nationwide on March 24.

Espinosa’s previous directing credits include Child 44, Safe House and Swedish film Easy Money.