The 2020 Tribeca Film Festival may have been unavoidably postponed, but it nevertheless continued in characteristically defiant and inspiring spirit with select films being made available for press and the juried competition, awarding top honours from this year’s program, still taking place. The winners have just been revealed in the festival’s first virtual awards ceremony.
Alice Wu’s The Half of It was honoured with The Founders Award for Best U.S. Narrative Feature; The Hater for Best International Narrative Feature; and Bo McGuire’s Socks On Fire for Best Documentary Feature. Shorts awards went to No More Wings for Best Narrative Short; My Father The Mover for Best Documentary Short; Friends for Best Animated Short and Cru-Raw for the Student Visionary Award. The Nora Ephron Award went to director Ruthy Pribar for her feature, Asia. The award was created seven years ago to honor excellence in storytelling by a female writer or director who embodies the spirit and boldness of the late filmmaker. The full list of films and filmmakers honoured are highlighted below.
“We are fortunate that technology allowed for our jury to come together this year to honor our filmmakers,” said Tribeca Film Festival Co-Founder and CEO Jane Rosenthal. “Despite not being able to be together physically, we were still able to support our artists, which has always been at the heart of the Festival.”
“While we are not yet able to celebrate these incredible films at their premieres, we are so proud to celebrate them in partnership with our generous jurors through our 2020 Tribeca awards,” said Festival Director Cara Cusumano. “The jury chose to recognize a daring, innovative, entertaining, diverse group of films and filmmakers, and the Festival is pleased to honor all of them with our first ever virtual awards ceremony.”
You can watch Tribeca’s virtual awards ceremony here.
Winners of the juried awards, presented by AT&T; Art Awards in partnership with CHANEL; Tribeca X, sponsored by PwC; and the jury participants are as follows:
U.S. NARRATIVE COMPETITION CATEGORIES:
The jury comprised of Cherien Dabis, Terry Kinney and Lucas Hedges awarded the following:
Founders Award for Best Narrative Feature – The Half of It, directed by Alice Wu.
- Jury Comment: “The film is so charming, it’s so energetic, it’s so fun, it’s so well-paced, it’s directed with such a sure hand, it’s a really confident film and the characters are really well drawn and the actors were fantastic.”
- Art Award: Julian Schnabel’s Le Scaphandre et le Papillon, 2007. Oil on map.
Best Actress in a U.S. Narrative Feature Film – Assol Abdullina, Materna.
- Jury Comment: “Assol just has so much compelling energy; her emotions ran so deep…we cared about her dilemma.”
Best Actor in a U.S. Narrative Feature Film – Steve Zahn, Cowboys.
- Jury Comment: “Steve showed great range in playing this character.”
Best Cinematography in a U.S. Narrative Feature Film – Materna, Greta Zozula, Chananun Chotrungroj, Kelly Jeffrey, Cinematographers.
- Jury Comment: “The visuals were striking and played with color, light and dark, in a very interesting way.”
- Special Jury Mention for Cinematography: My Heart Can’t Beat Unless You Tell It To.
Best Screenplay in a U.S. Narrative Feature Film – Cowboys, Anna Kerrigan, Screenwriter.
- Jury Comment: “A beautiful portrait of a father and his transgendered son.”
INTERNATIONAL NARRATIVE COMPETITION CATEGORIES:
The jury comprised of Sabine Hoffman, Judith Godrèche, Danny Boyle, William Hurt,and Demián Bichir awarded the following:
Best International Narrative Feature – The Hater (Poland), directed by Jan Komasa.
- Jury Comment: “Incredibly relevant for today; we were really impressed by the way it portrayed a character that is not immediately empathetic but really got us into the journey and the story.”
- Art Award: Helen Marden’s January Golden Rock, 2020. Watercolor on paper.
- Special Jury Mention: Ainu Mosir
Best Actor in an International Narrative Feature Film – Noe Hernandez, Kokoloko (Mexico).
- Jury Comment: “For his raw and brave performance, taking a giant leap of faith, hand-to-hand with his director.”
Best Actress in an International Narrative Feature Film – Shira Haas, Asia (Israel).
- Jury Comment: “Her face is a never-ending landscape in which even the tiniest expression is heartbreaking; she’s an incredibly honest and present actress who brings depth to everything she does.”
Best Cinematography in an International Narrative Feature Film – Asia (Israel), Daniella Nowitz, Cinematographer.
- Jury Comments: “We were impressed with how the cinematography was supporting the emotionality of the story and was allowing us to really deeply feel with the characters.”
“Very simply and beautifully done.”
Best Screenplay in an International Narrative Feature Film – Tryst With Destiny (India, France), Prashant Nair, Screenwriter.
- Jury Comments: “How cleverly conceived and executed this script was!” “Beautifully made film.”
DOCUMENTARY COMPETITION CATEGORIES:
The jury comprised of Yance Ford, Regina K. Scully, Ryan Fleck, Chris Pine,and Peter Deming awarded the following:
Best Documentary Feature – Socks on Fire, Bo McGuire, Director.
- Jury Comment: “The film used new techniques woven into documentary filmmaking and narrative storytelling.”
- Art Award: Sterling Ruby’s DRFTRS, 2020. Collage, paint and glue on paper.
- Special Jury Mention: Wonderboy
Best Cinematography in a Documentary Film – 499, Alejandro Mejia, Cinematographer.
- Jury Comment: “The filmmakers did an incredible job of weaving this fictional story into what’s happening today with the disappeared and to marry such grand visions that cinema can only do.”
Best Editing in a Documentary Film – Father Soldier Son, Amy Foote, Editor.
- Jury Comment: “Such a well-crafted film from start to finish; a story that stays with you.”
BEST NEW NARRATIVE DIRECTOR COMPETITION:
The jury comprised of Lukas Haas, Juno Temple, Nat Wolff, Grace Van Patten,and James Ponsoldt awarded the following:
Best New Narrative Director – Nobody Knows I’m Here, Gaspar Antillo, Director.
- Jury Comment: “A film that felt vital and alive, and every time we thought we knew who the protagonist was or what the world was it evolved and revealed more of itself to us.”
- Art Award: Rita Ackermann’s The Working Woman 3, 2018. Oil, crayon and graphite on paper.
BEST NEW DOCUMENTARY DIRECTOR COMPETITION:
The jury comprised of Erin Lee Carr, Stacey Reiss, Josh Hutcherson, Joel McHale, and Gretchen Mol awarded the following:
Albert Maysles New Documentary Director Award – Jacinta, Jessica Earnshaw, Director.
- Jury Comments: “Incredibly engaging filmmaking,” “very moving, beautifully done.”
- Art Award: Gus Van Sant’s Achelous and Hercules, 2016. Enamel on paper.
- Special Jury mention: The Last Out
THE NORA EPHRON AWARD:
The jury comprised of Gina Rodriguez, Aparna Nancherla, Anna Baryshnikov, Regina Hall, and Lizzy Caplanawarded:
The Nora Ephron Award – Asia, Director, Ruthy Pribar.
- Jury Comment: “From the writing, to the directing, to the camera moves, to the direction for the acting, to the way Ms. Pribar told a story through non-speaking was just outstanding.”
- Art Award: Pat Steir’s Untitled, 2008. Oil, pencil, ink, and acrylic on paper.
- Special Jury Mention: My Wonderful Wanda
SHORT FILM COMPETITION CATEGORIES:
The jury comprised of Pamela Adlon, Kerry Bishe, Kasi Lemmon, Taylor Hackford, and Marshall Curry awarded the following:
Best Narrative Short – No More Wings, Abraham Adeyemi, Director.
- Jury Comments: “It checked every box in terms of authenticity, and heart, and it was funny!” “It’s such an elegant piece of filmmaking.”
- Art Award: Robert Nava: Medusa’s Walk, 2020. Acrylic, oil stick, crayon, and pencil on paper.
- Special Jury Mention: Soup
Best Animated Short – Friends, Florian Grolig, Director.
- Jury Comment: “Gorgeous, sparse, monochromatic animation.”
- Art Award: Stephen Hannock’s Wallsend Morning on the River Tyne, 2019. Oil on board
- Special Jury Mention: Kapaemahu
The jury comprised of Asia Kate Dillon, Marti Noxon and Sheila Nevins awarded the following for the 2020 Short Documentary and Student Visionary Competitions:
Best Documentary Short – My Father The Mover, Julia Jansch, Director.
- Jury Comment: “A “movement” film which frees people from the pain had the biggest impression on us and lasted through the tragedies we’re going through now.”
- Art Award: Francesco Clemente’sFlag US, 2018. Watercolor and miniature on paper.
- Special Jury Mention: Welcome To A Bright White Limbo
Student Visionary Award – Cru-Raw,David Oesch, Director.
- Jury Comment: “It’s rare to see in a student festival something very real with a great Macabre climax that’s really sticky.”
- Art Award:Vahakn Arslanian’s Light of Airbus, 2009. Graphite on paper in artist’s frame.
- Special Jury mention: The Last Ferry From Grass Island
TRIBECA X AWARDS:
The finalists for the 2020 Tribeca X Awards, sponsored by PwC, are available for public viewing on Tribecafilm.com. Tribeca X recognizes excellence in branded storytelling at the intersection of advertising and entertainment.
The jury comprised of Stefon Bristol, Filmmaker; Taylor Johns,Head of Content Production at YETI; David Lee, Chief Creative Officer at Squarespace; Matt MacDonald, Chief Creative Officer at Omnicom for AT&T; and Bonnie Siegler,Founder at Eight and a Half awarded the following:
Best Short – Pay Day, Director, Morgan Cooper
- Brand: Synchrony Bank
- Agency: Giant Spoon
- Production Co: ColorCreative
- Jury Comments: “This funny and stylish narrative gives a fresh and insightful perspective on getting out of a comfortable cycle and start chasing after one’s dreams.”
Best Series – Girls Room, Director, Tiffany Johnson
- Writer: Lena Waithe
- Brand: Dove
- Agency: attn:, BBH Entertainment
- Jury Comment: “The unique format of this series caught our eye right away and how it paired perfectly with this targeted audience.”
Best Feature – U Shoot Videos? Director, Morgan Cooper
- Brand: Adorama
- Jury Comments: “You had us at the shocking ending – while we all loved the storytelling and performances up to that point, how the feature built up to that climax was very impactful.”