On April 28, more than 700 talented students and movie buffs gathered to celebrate Florida’s finest in student moviemaking at the 14th Annual Palm Beach International Film Festival’s Student Showcase of Films (SSOF) awards ceremony. The event took place at Palm Beach Community College’s Duncan Theatre.

Top student moviemakers were recognized in film categories, a screenwriting competition, a poster contest and three scholarships, and were awarded with more than $25,000 in cash prizes and scholarships. FSU student Sou Yun Sim went home with the first place award (and $2,000) for My Four Inch Precious, which won Best College Feature/Shorts and Documentaries.

For the first time, Palm Beach County native (and legendary movie star) Burt Reynolds presented his eponymous $5,000 scholarships to the lucky recipients. This year’s winners were high school students Kristen Harding and Savannah Winchester (who also won first place and $2,000 for Wednesday, which garnered the Best High School Feature/Shorts and Documentaries award.)

“We broke all previous records with 219 entries for the competition this year and added a new Film Florida, Sara Fuller scholarship to the awards,” says Michelle Hillery, Palm Beach County Film & Television Commission’s director of operations and programs and Student Showcase of Films producer. “The surprise appearance of Burt Reynolds and other celebrities at the ceremony made the 2009 Student Showcase of Films a huge success. The students continue to dazzle us year after year, and we’re so happy to provide them an outlet to present their artistry to peers and industry professionals while encouraging their continued education in film and the arts.”

For a complete list of winners, visit http://www.pbfilm.com/student_showcase_films.cfm?act=student.

To view the entire show online at WebCast-TV, go to http://www.webcast-tv.com/TheStudentShowcaseOfFilms.