Filmmaker to be honored at Beaufort festival dies; award to be presented posthumously

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Filmmaker to be honored at Beaufort festival dies; award to be presented posthumously

Published Monday, February 11, 2013   |  470 Words  |  

Producer and director Chris Brinker, who died suddenly Friday, will still be honored at this week's Beaufort International Film Festival.

Brinker, 42, will receive the first Robert Smalls Indie Vision Award posthumously at the seventh annual festival, president Ron Tucker said.

"He was a young man who had a lot of potential," Tucker said. "He was living life to the fullest and had a lot of things planned."

According to Entertainment Weekly, Brinker began experiencing chest pains late Thursday, and doctors were unable to treat the extensive damage from an aortic aneurysm.

Brinker's best-known works include "The Boondock Saints" and "The Boondock Saints II." He also produced "Borough of Kings" and "Lonely Street," according to his biography on the film festival website.

Brinker was wrapping up production on his directorial debut, "Whiskey Bay," which he was to discuss during the film festival along with actor Tom Berenger, one of the movie's stars.

The film is about a policeman who infiltrates a ruthless criminal enterprise in 1983 after he takes down a contract killer, according to the film festival website. The film also stars Matt Dillon and Williem Dafoe and was set to be released by Sony this year.

"It was Tom's suggestion that we consider (Brinker) for coming to the festival, and then when I looked at his work and his potential, I saw he was the epitome of the independent filmmaker who worked hard to get a film made," Tucker said.

The Robert Smalls Indie Vision Award is named for the Beaufort native and Civil War hero who rose from being a slave to a U.S. congressman.

Berenger was to present the award to Brinker, but Tucker said Berenger will be with Brinker's family and unable to attend the festival.

A tribute to Brinker and his work has been added to the beginning of the Saturday-night awards ceremony. A forum Friday on the "Making of Whiskey Bay" that would have been led by Brinker and Berenger has been canceled.

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