2024 Miami Film Festival Jury & Audience Award Winners Announced

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Los Frikis,” directed by directed by Tyler Nilson & Michael Schwartz, took the festival’s top jury prize, the $20,000 MARIMBAS Award, at the 41st edition of Miami Dade College’s (MDC) acclaimed Miami Film Festival. The event ran from April 5 – 14, 2024. The award is an international competition for the jury-selected new narrative feature film that best exemplifies richness and resonance for cinema’s future.

Additional winners include: 

  • The $25,000 Made in MIA Feature Film Award was given to a feature film that premiered at the festival and had a substantial portion of the story, setting, and actual filming location in South Florida and that best utilizes their story and theme for universal resonance. 
    • “Mountains,” directed by Monica Sorelle
      • Monica Sorelle created her first feature film “Mountains” through her cinematic arts residency and $50,000 commission she received from the local arts nonprofit, Oolite Arts.
  • $10,000 Jordan Ressler First Feature Award, created by the South Florida family of the late Jordan Ressler and sponsored by the Jordan Ressler Charitable Fund, is presented to the best film made by a filmmaker making a feature narrative film debut.  
    • “In The Summers,” directed by Alessandra Lacorazza.
  • The Audience Feature Film Award went to “The Shadow of the Sun” directed by Miguel Angel Ferrer. First runner-up was “The Performance” directed by Shira Piven, and second runner-up went to “Los Frikis” directed by Tyler Nilson and Michael Schwartz.
  • The Documentary Achievement Award went to Daughters,” directed by Angela Patton and Natalie Rae
  • The Audience Documentary Film Award went to “Skywalkers: A Love Story” directed by Jeff Zimbalist, Maria Bukhonina. First runner up was “Stories from the Lighthouse” directed by Deborah Dickson, and second runner-up was “Women of Iran” directed by Anonymous. 


Short Film Awards 

  • Made in MIA Short Film Award ($10,000) went to “Konpa,” directed by Al’lkens Plancher with an Honorable mention given to “Jack and Sam,” directed by Jordan Matthew Horowitz.
  • Miami International Short Film Award ($4,000) went to “The Anne Frank Gift Shop,” directed by Mickey Rapkin. The award is given to a jury-selected short film (30 min. or less) of any genre from anywhere in the world. 
  • Short Documentary Film Award ($1,000) went “Audio & The Alligator,” directed by Andrés I. Estrada. The award was sponsored by the University of Miami School of Communication Department of Cinematic Arts and co-presented with Bill Cosford Cinema.
  • The Reel South Short Award ($2,000) went to Over the Wall,” directed by Krystal Tingle. The PBS documentary series Reel South and its producing partner South Florida PBS debut a new award at the Miami Film Festival honoring the best in Southern short-form filmmaking.
  • The Cinemaslam Competition Award ($1,000), held among Florida college film students, went to “Retrospection Of A Home (once upon a time),” directed by Sebastian Marcano-Perez.
  • The Audience Short Film Award went to the drama “Objects of Desire” directed by Alejandro Renteria. First runner-up was “Not Rod,” directed by Becca Greene and Alex Pollck, and second runner-up “Yuck!” directed by Loic Espuche.


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About Miami Dade College’s Miami Film Festival 

Celebrating cinema in two annual events, Miami Film Festival (41st annual edition April 5-14, 2024) and Miami Film Festival GEMS (November 2024), Miami Dade College’s Miami Film Festival is considered the preeminent film festival for showcasing Ibero-American cinema in the U.S., and a major launch pad for all international and documentary cinema. The annual Festival welcomes more than 45,000 audience members and more than 400 filmmakers, producers, talent and industry professionals. It is the only major festival housed within a college or university. In the last five years, the Festival has screened films from more than 60 countries, including 300 World, International, North American, U.S. and East Coast Premieres. The Festival also offers unparalleled educational opportunities to film students and the community at large. Major Festival Sponsors include Miami-Dade County, State of Florida’s Division of Arts and Culture, Miami Downtown Development Authority, Telemundo51, NBC6, its official host venues JW Marriott Marquis Miami, and Silverspot Cinema. For more information, visit miamifilmfestival.com or call 305-237-FILM (3456).

Miami Film Festival