Saturday, July 20, 2019
Sun Valley Film Festival Announces Awards
“Long Shot” stars Seth Rogen and Charlize Theron. COURTESY: Sun Valley Film Festival
Wednesday, March 20, 2019


“Running with Beto” won the Producer’s Vision Award at the 2019 Sun Valley Film Festival. And the movie, which took home the Audience Award for Documentary at SXSW in Austin, Texas, last week, was a runner-up for the Audience Award in Sun Valley.

But it was “Long Shot,” a romantic comedy about a political reporter and diplomat, that won the Audience Award voted on by moviegoers at the five-day Sun Valley Film Festival presented by Ford. The festival wrapped up Sunday.

Festival organizers awarded more than $200,000 in prizes and countless mentorship opportunities for independent filmmakers.

David Mogdigliani, who won the Producer’s Vision Award for “Running with Beto,” described being invited into the O’Rourke’s kitchen following Beto O’Rourke’s loss to Sen. Ted Cruz. PHOTO: Karen Bossick

Here are the awards--

AUDIENCE AWARD, voted on by moviegoers: “Long Shot,” directed by Jonathan Levine. Runner-ups included Christopher Cantwell’s “The Parts you Lose,” Shannon Service and Jeffrey Waldron’s “Ghost Fleet,” David Modigliani’s “Running with Beto” and Richard Ladkani’s “Sea of Shadows.”

PRODUCER’S VISION AWARD, recognizing a producer’s ability to keep a dramatic, feature-length film in focus during the journey of the project: “Running with Beto,” a look at Beto O’Rourke’s U.S. Senate campaign against Ted Cruz, by producer Jeff Steen.

ONE IN A MILLION AWARDS, honoring feature-length stories made for under $1 million “Ioana Uricaru’s “Lemonade,” depicting the true story about a Romanian woman trying to get her Green Card, and Ross Kaufman’s “Tigerland,” a documentary look at two men’s efforts to save endangered tigers, produced by Fisher Stevens.

“Ghost Fleet” offers a sobering look at the human slaves employed even on U.S. fishing boats. COURTESY: Sun Valley Film Festival

SHORTY AWARD for best short film: “Kate in Oxnard,” directed by Emily Tomson.

GEM STATE AWARD, presented by Festival sponsor Zions Bank for Idaho filmmaker whose work best reflects the beauty and diversity of the Gem State: “Mar,” about a lonely healer addicted to others’ pain directed by Martin McGreevy.

NAT GEO WILD TO INSPIRE—Reed Rickert for his base jumping short, “The Flip.” Rickert, who was one of four finalists, will receive $1,000 and a National Geographic Expedition to explore wild places alongside Nat Geo Explorers.

NAT GEO FURTHER AWARD, given to a leader who has boldly pushed the boundaries of his or her field. Mariana van Zeller, who has documented a variety of topics from war to El Chapo.

Fisher Stevens won the Snow Angel Award for his work trying to change the world through such movies as “Before the Flood.” PHOTO: Karen Bossick

THE FILM LAB, receiving $185,000 in services from L.A.-based post-production company The Farm: “Colewell,” directed by Tom Quinn and produced by Matthew Thurm, Craig Shilowich, Joshua Blum and Alexandra Byer.

HIGH SCRIBE, which gives finalists an opportunity for one-on-one mentoring from industry insiders: “The Graveyard Shift,” written by Max Andrew Dubinsky and Matthew Carpenter.

1 POTATO, a short screenplay competition with a $5,000 stipend to help shoot a film in Idaho; “Girls Are Strong Here,” written by Scott Burkhardt

FUTURE FILMMAKER FORUM—HOT SHOT WINNER with $1,000 prize; “Control Yourself,” directed by Zoe Takaki; “Gabriel Spirit Award, with a $300 prize; “Beyond the Wall,” directed by Mia Nelson.

Documentarian Mariana Van Zeller, shown here with Nat Geo’s Chris Albert, is a Peabody Award winning Portuguese journalist and correspondent for National Geographic Channel. PHOTO: Karen Bossick

GEM STATE JR. AWARD, with a $500 prize: “For Us, directed by Justin Buss.

Other awards were given away during the festival:

SVFF VISION AWARD, paying tribute to industry icons who have provided keen insight, influence and initiative to see their creative visions come to fruition: Meg Ryan

PIONEER AWARD, presented by Variety to an industry innovator: Aaron Paul


SNOW ANGEL AWARD , presented by Beautycounter to celebrate industry leaders on the front lines of enacting change: Fisher Stevens, who directed “Before the Flood” and “The Cove.”

The ninth annual Sun Valley Film Festival will take place March 11-15.


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