There are a number of ways to win a film festival, for many of these filmmakers having their films seen for the first time with packed houses is enough for them to call themselves winners, for others it’s getting a standing ovation by a well respected director (Michael Moore after Searching for Sugar Man screening), the ones we at ScreenCrave loved, happened to be the exact same ones that won the Audience Awards, and of course there are the ones that juror members decided were worth giving some money and accolades to. Find out all of them below…

Our Top Picks:

  1. Any Day Now – Read Review
  2. Searching Sugar Man – Read Review
  3. Journey to Planet X – Read Review
  4. Burn – Read Review

Heineken Audience Awards:

Any Day Now – Best Narrative Feature – Directed by Travis Fine

“We had a wonderful experience here two years ago,” said Fine.  “We are absolutely thrilled and honored that audiences responded so strongly.”

Burn – Best Documentary Feature – Directed by Tom Putnam and Brenna Sanchez

“We were told time and time again that there is no audience for a film about firefighters,” said Sanchez.  Added Putnam, “We are so grateful for this honor and we hope it will help raise the profile of the film and let people know what’s going on in Detroit and across this country.”

Each award comes with a cash prize of $25,000. Any Day Now receives the sculpture Ascension courtesy of Nathan Sawaya and BURN receives Jacobs #16 “Blue Skies” courtesy of Peter Dayton & Winston Wächter Fine Art.


The Jurors:

The jurors for the 2012 World Narrative Competition were Patricia Clarkson, Dakota Fanning, Mike Newell, Lisa Schwarzbaum, Jim Sheridan, and Irwin Winkler.

The jurors for the 2012 Best New Narrative Director Competition were Camilla Belle, Whoopi Goldberg, Susannah Grant, Zach Helm, Courtney Hunt, Kellan Lutz and Leelee Sobieski.

The jurors for the 2012 World Documentary Competition were Julia Bacha, Kim Cattrall, K’naan, Michael Moore, and Lucy Walker.

The jurors for the 2012 Best New Documentary Director Competition were Stuart Blumberg, Jared Cohen, Rachel Grady, Bethann Hardison, Sal Masekela, Ricki Stern, and Olivia Wilde.

The 2012 Best Narrative Short Competition jurors were Maureen Chiquet, Hugh Dancy, Aline Brosh McKenna, Bridget Moynahan, Drew Nieporent, Mohammed Saeed Harib, and Shari Springer Berman.

The 2012 Best Documentary and Student Short Competition jurors were Scooter Braun, Robert Hammond, Brett Ratner, Susan Sarandon, James Spione, Shailene Woodley, and Susan Zirinsky.

The Winners:

The Founders Award for Best Narrative Feature 
War Witch
Directed by Kim Nguyen (Canada)

Jury Comments: “This indelible character study of a girl who becomes a woman before our eyes in the midst of harrowing war gives words to the unspeakable. Riveting, heartbreaking, vivid, and eloquent, the movie balances scenes of crazy enemy hatred with moments of luminous private love.”

Best Actor in a Narrative Feature Film
Dariel Arrechada and Javier Nuñez Florian as Raul and Elio
Una Noche, directed by Lucy Mulloy

Jury Comments: “We give the award for Best Actor in a Narrative Feature to Dariel Arrechada and to Javier Nuñez Florian in Una Noche, for potent individual performances that together are even greater than the sum of their parts. Playing Raul and Elio, young Cuban men who goad each other on in a dream of fleeing Havana for a fantasy of Miami, Dariel locates Raul’s danger and sexual power as precisely as Javier taps into Elio’s essential sweetness. Both young actors are nonprofessionals who took great risks to tell a daring story. Each won our hearts.”

Best Actress in a Narrative Feature Film
Rachel Mwanza as Komona

War Witch, directed by Kim Nguyen

Jury Comments: “A nonprofessional actress, this remarkable young woman—barely a teenager when the movie was shot—so fully inhabits her role that there are no borders to her stunning performance, no distance at all between the actress and the unforgettable character Komona.”

Best Cinematography in a Narrative Feature Film
Una Noche
Cinematography by
Trevor Forrest and Shlomo Godder, directed by Lucy Mulloy

Jury Comments: “Una Noche reveals a Havana we could never otherwise see, in its jumble of vibrant life, decay, and making do. There’s a ‘you are there’ documentary immediacy to the picture, shot on the fly and in the streets, that keeps us enthralled.”

Best Screenplay for a Narrative Feature Film
All In (La Suerte en Tus Manos)
Written by Daniel Burman and Sergio Dubcovsky and directed by Daniel Burman (Argentina)

Jury Comments: “We are impressed with the movie’s elegant and thoughtful balance of comedic lightness and deepness of soul; its ability to locate universal issues regarding families, lovers, kids, and running a business within the tangy specificity of an Argentinean Jewish poker-playing milieu; and its ability to cram vasectomies and rock ’n’ roll rabbis into the same story without breaking a sweat. Comedy is hard; All In handles it with ease.”

Best New Narrative Director
Una Noche: Lucy Mulloy (UK, Cuba, USA)

Jury Comments: “Lucy Mulloyʼs Una Noche rang the bell inside all of our little director hearts. We simply thought the film was awesome, and it only grew in our esteem as we spoke of it after. It is a film that immediately connects any audience member it can find to the undeniable, hopeful, and naïve intentions of the young. It is so rich in its motivations, and so breathtaking in its outcomes, it is thoughtful and entertaining in perfect balance. Mulloy pulled us through social portrait to family drama, to true crime, to thriller, all with skill, grace, the realized intent of a sophisticated filmmaker, and deep love for humanity. So, Lucy, we would like you to accept the 2012 Best New Narrative Director award, and please consider us for your next picture.”

Best Documentary Feature
The World Before Her
Directed by Nisha Pahuja (Canada)

Jury Comments: “With unprecedented access, great compassion, and a keen eye for the universal, this year’s winner takes a hard and clear-eyed look at the trials of growing up female in today’s fast-changing world. Following young women who have taken diametrically opposed decisions on how to tackle the influence of global forces in their communities, the filmmaker takes us on a journey to examine how the pressures of faith, fashion, and family are bringing up a generation of women who are desperately searching for meaning amidst a reality of few real choices.”

Best Editing in a Documentary Feature
The Flat (Hadira)
Edited by Tali Halter Shenkar
and directed by Arnon Goldfinger, (Israel, Germany)

Jury Comments: “For a story so skillfully told that even though we thought this subject had been covered already by many great films, to our surprise a new story emerged that took us by surprise, left us on the edge of our seat, and will stay with us. The story is based on a complicated and murky journey into the unknown; however, thanks to the sure-handed and deceptively simple editing, it unfolded so clearly and powerfully that even a scene of the filmmaker and his mother lost in a rainy graveyard becomes beautifully climactic and memorable. This is a lesson in how a modestly shot family history can transcend its personal nature and become universal in its insights into human psychology thanks to great filmmaking craft.”

Best New Documentary Director
Wavumba: Jeroen van Velzen (Netherlands)

Jury Comments: “A modern day ‘Old Man and the Sea’ tale, set off the coast of Kenya, this lyrical film depicts the story of Masoud, a legend of shark fishing who, along with his young protégé, strives to end his days with one last grand catch. We the jury especially appreciated this new director’s confidence of style, his restraint and his deep relationship to a culture fast disappearing. It is a hypnotic story of man and nature, unafraid of silence, and full of a terrible beauty. We look forward to his next endeavor with great anticipation.”

Best Narrative Short
Directed by Bryan Buckley (USA)

Jury Comments: “Asad is a lyrical, moving and beautifully realized portrayal of a world we rarely get to see in cinema. Every shot of the film is well thought out and specific to this unique world—a fishing village in Somalia. Yet Asad’s most astounding achievement is boasting an array of brilliant performances by a cast of Somali refugees. Congratulations to writer/director Bryan Buckley and his amazing cast on making a short film that is rather large in spirit, ambition and accomplishment.”

Best Documentary Short
Directed by Nadav Kurtz (USA)

Jury Comments: “This film is a beautifully crafted portrait of a group of men with a sense of humanity and a very unique view of the world. In 10 minutes we were drawn into a story that told us about human nature, quality of life, economics, race, the importance of family and mortality.  The men may be invisible to the world rushing below them, but they see through the windows they’re washing—deep into the lives and souls of the people behind the glass. It’s cinematically exquisite, with light so rich it’s thrilling to watch.”

Student Visionary Award
Directed by Adiya Imri Orr (Israel)

Jury Comments: “Stitches is a well written, powerfully acted film that exposes the rawness of two life partners who have decided to have a baby and now find themselves at the precipice of their relationship. The world around them still treats them like they don’t quite belong. Every confrontation, every expression feels like you’re touching an exposed nerve. Life, as you discover in this film, is not always neat.”

Tribeca (Online) Film Festival Best Feature Film
On The Mat
Directed and written by Fredric Golding (USA)

Tribeca (Online) Film Festival Best Short Film
Directed by Seth Keal (USA)