And the winners are...
The 18th annual Tribeca Film Festival, presented by AT&T, announced the winning filmmakers, storytellers, and actors in its competition categories at this year’s awards ceremony this evening at the Stella Artois Theatre at BMCC TPAC. The top honors went to Burning Cane, which received the Founders Award for Best U.S. Narrative Feature, House of Hummingbird (Beol-sae), pictured below, for Best International Narrative Feature, and Scheme Birds, also pictured below, for Best Documentary Feature. The Festival awarded $165,000 in cash prizes. The 2019 Tribeca Film Festival runs through this Sunday, May 5th.
Rania Attieh won the Nora Ephron Award and a $25,000 prize for Initials S.G. (Iniciales S.G.), pictured below. The award, created seven years ago, honors excellence in storytelling by a female writer or director embodying the spirit and boldness of the late filmmaker.
Tribeca honored innovation in immersive storytelling with its Storyscapes Award, which went to The Key, created by Celine Tricart.
“I’m so proud to see our juries reward a group of winners that is truly representative of the diversity of story and accomplishment in craft at this year’s Festival," said Festival Director Cara Cusumano. "We are particularly excited for the many first-time filmmakers the jury chose to recognize, and feel like this year’s winners signal a bright future ahead for independent film."
Awards were given in the following feature film competition categories: Founders Award for Best Narrative, International Narrative, Documentary, New Narrative Director, the Albert Maysles New Documentary Director, and the Nora Ephron Award, honoring a woman writer or director. Short films were honored in the Narrative, Documentary, Student Visionary, and Animation categories.
This year's Festival included 113 feature-length films, 63 short films, and 33 immersive storytelling projects representing 44 countries.
Screenings of the award-winning films will take place throughout the final day of the Festival, Sunday, May 5th, at various venues. Specific times and ticketing information are available here.
The winners of the Audience Awards, powered by AT&T, which are determined by audience votes throughout the Festival via the Festival app, will be announced on Saturday, May 4th.
In addition to cash awards and in-kind services provided by sponsors including AT&T, Bulleit Frontier Whiskey, CHANEL, CNN Films, and PwC, a number of the winners were presented with original pieces of art created by contemporary artists like Jane Dickson, Shepard Fairey, Stephen Hannock, JR, Eddie Kang, Jeff Koons, Walter Robinson, Amy Sillman, Swoon, and Fred Tomaselli.
The winners, awards, and comments from the jury who selected the recipients are as follows:
U.S. NARRATIVE COMPETITION CATEGORIES
The jurors for the 2019 U.S. Narrative Competition were Lucy Alibar, Jonathan Ames, Cory Hardrict, Dana Harris, and Jenny Lumet.
Founders Award for Best Narrative Feature: Burning Cane, directed by Phillip Youmans. The winner receives $20,000, sponsored by AT&T, and the art award "Bloom" by Fred Tomaselli. The award was given by Robert De Niro and Jane Rosenthal on behalf of the jury. Jury comment: “The Founders Award goes to a voice that is searingly original. One of the jurors compared this filmmaker’s unique voice to a latter day Faulkner, Welty, Williams. We loved this filmmaker’s vision and we love this filmmaker’s inevitable brilliant future. We are honored to present this award to Phillip Youmans for Burning Cane.”
Best Actress in a U.S. Narrative Feature Film: Haley Bennett in Swallow. Jury comment: “For a sensitive, engaging performance, the Best Actress award goes to Haley Bennett for Swallow.”
Special jury mention: “For her always surprising and deeply engaging work in Stray Dolls, Geetanjali Thapa."
Best Actor in a U.S. Narrative Feature Film: Wendell Pierce in Burning Cane. Jury comment: “For his portrayal of a troubled, passionate preacher, the Best Actor award goes to Wendell Pierce in Burning Cane.”
Best Cinematography in a U.S. Narrative Feature Film: Phillip Youmans for Burning Cane. Jury comment: “For cinematography that was bold and swung for the fences, the award goes to Phillip Youmans for Burning Cane.”
Special jury mention: “For work that took us to the icy coasts and sweltering kitchens of rural Maine, Todd Banhazl for Blow the Man Down."
Best Screenplay in a U.S. Narrative Feature Film: Bridget Savage Cole and Danielle Krudy for Blow the Man Down. The winner receives $2,500. Jury comment: “For a stylized, thrilling story of secrets, Bridget Savage Cole and Danielle Krudy for Blow the Man Down.”
Special jury mention: “To a story of a woman finding her biological family and her logical family on the highway, Ani Simon-Kennedy for The Short History of the Long Road.”
INTERNATIONAL NARRATIVE COMPETITION CATEGORIES
The jurors for the 2019 International Narrative Competition were Gbenga Akinnagbe, Angela Bassett, Baltasar Kormákur, Rebecca Miller, and Steve Zaillian.
Best International Narrative Feature: House of Hummingbird (Beol-sae) (South Korea, USA) directed and written by Bora Kim. The winner receives $20,000 and the art award "Easter" by Eddie Kang. Jury comment: “In this beautiful film, a seemingly unexceptional girl is truly seen by another human being for the first time. Through that random connection, her perspective of herself, and hence her life, is transformed. The award for Best International Narrative Feature goes to Bora Kim for House of Hummingbird.
Best Actress in an International Narrative Feature Film: Ji-hu Park in House of Hummingbird (Beol-sae) (South Korea, USA). Jury comment: “For a subtle performance of enormous range and complexity, the award for Best Actress in an International Narrative Feature goes to Ji-hu Park in House of Hummingbird."
Best Actor in an International Narrative Feature Film: Ali Atay in Noah Land. Jury comment: “For an emotionally powerful and truthful portrayal of a conflicted and self-destructive man struggling to make sense of his life, the award for Best Actor in an International Narrative Feature goes to Ali Atay in Noah Land.”
Best Cinematography in an International Narrative Feature Film: Kang Gook-hyun for House of Hummingbird (Beol-sae) (South Korea, USA) directed by Bora Kim. Jury comment: “For empathetic, patient, yet specific and assured cinematography which allows us to embark on a young girl's journey as she comes to terms with who she truly is, the award for Best Cinematography in an International Narrative Feature goes to Gook-hyun Kang for House of Hummingbird."
Best Screenplay in an International Narrative Feature Film: Noah Land (Nuh Tepesi) written by Cenk Ertürk (Germany, Turkey, USA). The winner receives $2,500. Jury comment: “For its perceptive and nuanced storytelling of an estranged father and son struggling to understand the past, each other, and themselves, the award for Best Screenplay in an International Narrative Feature goes to Cenk Ertürk for Noah Land."