The Prestigious Film Festival Finally Returns!
After the long postponement due to the COVID 19 pandemic, the New Hope Film Festival came roaring back this past summer. Over 111 films from 16 countries, with over 39 original scripts were showcased at the world-renowned event. Guests were asked to adhere to safety protocols in order to attend the ceremony physically, while they also had the option to participate in and view the films presented virtually. The ceremonies founder and president D.F. Whipple announced and presented the annual awards to a raucous crowd of filmmakers and praised their perseverance in the trying times.
The film Silo was presented with the prestigious Best Picture Jury award. Directed by Marshall Burnette and produced by Samuel Goldberg, the duo made the film to raise awareness for farm safety. Their film found distribution with Oscilloscope Films and is now available through VOD. The award for Best Narrative Feature went to Dreammover, a psychological fantasy from the Russian Federation’s Roman Olkhovka. P.Patrick Hogan nabbed the award for Best Short Film for his film Killing Time. Finally, the award for Best Documentary was won by Khalifa Wongs The Journey of Jazz Dance.
Other Jury award winners include Jennifer Holness’s Subjects of Desire in the Cultural Spirit category for its exploration of society’s view of black women, Paul Sheriff’s My Sister Hali, a biographical film covering the tragic story of the 60’s gymnastics star of the same name. The Best Foreign Film award went to Erik Borner’s Silence. The Female Eye Filmmaking award went to Dale Griffiths Stamos’s The Dinner Guest. Best TV Pilot was awarded to Yellow by Sarah Deakins. The Indie Spirit award winner was Bangla Surf Girls by Elizabeth D. Costa. The New Hope Award went to Isaac Kerlow for Tsunami of New Dreams. The Best Alternative Film was Kings of Mulberry Street by Judy Naidoo. The Best Comedy award went to Stuck! directors Omri Anghel and Lauren LeBeouf. And finally, the LA-based filmmakers Kirstie Munoz and Heather Brawley took the LGBTQ Spirit Award for their beautifully crafted short film Loving Lenna.
The Heart of Camden- The Story of Father Michael Doyle, directed by Douglas Clayton and narrated by actor Martin Sheen, took home the award for Best Short Documentary, while on the darker side of life, the Award for Best Horror Thriller went to Bob Celli’s The Keeper, and the Best Sci-Fi Film award went to Night Sky by Greg Rulfs. Jack Dentinger’s Aquamarine, a gender-bent interpretation of 10th century suspected serial killer Mary Ann Cotton, took home the award for Best Experimental Short.
The music culture was also celebrated at New Hope. The award for Best Video went to Stormy by Michael Bernett. Earth wildlife also had a voice in the ceremony through Animal Welfare Winner Desert Flight by John Anzoni and Samia Staehle.
Audience Choice awards for the night, which are primarily decided via ballot, included Mark Borkowski’s Hungry Ghosts, a short film inspired by the opioid crisis, NC Heikin’s Life & Life about criminal justice reformation, a restorative practices themed documentary Detroit Rising: How the Motor City Becomes a Restorative City by Cassidy Friedman, and Last Night in Vegas by J. Nicholas Meese. A freedom-minded musical that also took the jury’s Best Student Film award. In addition to these prizes, there were jury awards for the conjoined New Hope Film Festival Script Competition. The highest honor went to Paul Teese’s Secret Passage, a cheeky thriller in France. Set in the same place is Best Teleplay winner Forbidden: Once Upon a War, centered on a love affair. The award for Best Alternative Script was given to Diane Young Uniman’s Triangle 146. Best Sci-Fi Thriller went to John Thibault’s Healing Time, Best Action Thriller went to Gregory JM Kasunich’s Run for Your Life, Best Period Script went to Rosalyn Rosen’s Red Sea, and the award for Best Short Script went to Sahlima’s About Nelson.
For the complete list of winners and nominees from the event, as well as movie previews, visit the event’s official blog.
Learn more about the New Hope Film Festival.
The Keeper (2021) Official Trailer