The LA Shorts Fest has announced the winners from its 2009 edition, with Justin Ambrosino’s The 8th Samurai taking the Best of the Fest prize.

The 28-minute drama is about a small-time actor who lands a role in Kurosawa’s samurai epic in 1953.

As an Oscar-qualifying event, the following winners will be eligible for Academy Award consideration:

Best Experimental: Sky People by Shanti Thakur
Best Animation: Alma by Rodrigo Blaas
Best Comedy: Boutonniere by Coley Sohn
Best Drama: Hotel by Tim Conrad
Best Foreign Film: Sidney Turtlebaum by Tristram Shapeero
Best of the Fest: The 8th Samurai by Justin Ambrosino

Other winners from the festival are:
Best Documentary: We Love You by Jonathan Kalafer
Best Creative Commercial: Free Doritos! by Joe and Dave Herbert
Best Music Video: Man-Sized Wreath (REM) by Crush Toronto and Gary Thomas

The best independent filmmaker award went to I’m Not Matt Damon by Jim Rothman.

Special recognition awards went to Dan Cadan’s The Devil’s Wedding and Bert & Bertie’s The Taxidermist.

The 13th annual LA Shorts Fest ran July 23-31 at Laemmle’s Sunset 5 in West Hollywood. The jurors were actor Julian McMahon, Showtime’s Helen Huang, Disney’s David Bossert, HBO’s Nick Hall, journalist Nikki Finke, Disney’s David Block, producer Bonnie Curtis, Lionsgate’s Matthew Janzen, actress Jessalyn Gilsig, actress Navi Rawat, Edward Saxon Productions’ Justin Bell, and producer Peggy Rajski.