2019 Awards Winners

Cash awards totaling more than $150,000 are given in competition categories.

Slider

KNIGHT MARIMBAS AWARD

WINNER: Cristina Gallego and Ciro Guerra’s Birds of Passage

Production Company: Ciudad Lunar Productions of Colombia and The Orchard (U.S. distributor)

The award offers a cash prize of $40,000 cash to the jury-selected feature film (60 min or longer) that best exemplifies richness and resonance for cinema’s future.

The jury was comprised of Francesa Silvestri, René Sampaio and Tabaré Blanchard.

KNIGHT MADE IN MIA AWARD

FEATURE WINNER: Ivette Lucas and Patrick Bresnan’s Pahokee

SHORT WINNER (TIE): Faren Humes’ “Liberty” and Jayme Gershen’s “Six Degrees of Immigration

The award offers a cash prize of $30,000 to the jury-selected feature film and $10,000 to the jury-selected short film (under 30 minutes) of any genre that features a qualitatively/quantitatively substantial portion of its content in South Florida, and that most universally demonstrates a common ground of pride, emotion, and faith for the South Florida community.

The jury was comprised of Victoria Rogers, Xander Robin and Valerie Brooks.

IMBDPRO SHORT FILM AWARD

WINNER: Carolina Markowicz’s “The Orphan

The award offers a cash prize of $5,000 to the jury-selected short film.

The jury was comprised of Keith Simanton, Christine Archilla, April Dobbins, Adam Dunshee, Miachel Fass, Myriam Grad, Fiona Green, Luis Hernandez, Joshua Jean-Baptiste, Man Kit, Juan Lazzaros, Ileana Oroza, Donald Papy, Hal Prewitt, Ronnie Rivera, Kevin Sharpley, Lisa Sloat, Jose-Antonio Valencia, Dudley Alexis, Samuel Albis, David Borenstein and Margaret Cardillo.

HBO IBERO- AMERICAN FEATURE FILM AWARD

WINNER: Bani Khoshnoudi’s Fireflies

Produced by Pensée Sauvage and Zensky Cine of Mexico.

The award offers a cash prize of $5,000 to the jury-selected short film.

The jury was comprised of Paz Fabrega, Rubén Peralta Rigaud and Leslie Cohen.

HBO IBERO-AMERICAN SHORT FILM AWARD

WINNER: Brian Robau’s “This Is Your Cuba

The award offers a cash prize of $5,000 to the jury-selected best U.S. Hispanic or Ibero-American short film (30 min or less) in the Official Selection.

JORDAN RESSLER FIRST FEATURE AWARD

WINNER: Alexandre Moratto’s Socrates

The award offers a cash prize of $10,000 to the jury-selected best feature film (60 min or longer) made by a filmmaker making his or her debut. The award is courtesy of the South Florida family of the late Jordan Ressler, an aspiring screenwriter whose life was tragically cut short before he could realize his dream.

The jury was comprised of Vanessa Ressler, Aml Ameen and Tomás Alzamora.

DOCUMENTARY ACHIEVEMENT AWARD

WINNER: Billy Corben’s Magic City Hustle

Produced by Miami-based company Rakontur.

The award is given to one documentary film as voted upon by the Festival audience, awarded to the film’s lead producer (production company). All feature-length documentary (50 min or longer) playing in the Festival’s Official Selection are eligible for this award.

ALACRAN MUSIC IN FILM AWARD

WINNER: Mowg’s original score for Burning

The award offers a cash prize of $5,000 and highlights the power of music in film and celebrates the role of the film composer. Alacran celebrates the artists behind the music composition, which often stays in the shadow, for their contribution to the film industry by presenting this award.

The jury was comprised of Jorge Moreno, Carlos Rafael Rivera and Giorga Lo Savio.

ZENO MOUNTAIN AWARD

WINNER: Brian Blum’s “My Daughter Yoshiko

The award offers a cash prize of $5,000, courtesy of Fringe Partners, to the filmmaker of a jury-selected film of any genre and any length that best celebrates the diversity of abilities and disabilities and helps to break down barriers to our understanding of people living with disabilities. The award is named after Zeno Mountain Farm in Lincoln, VT, and inspired by the actors and filmmakers in the 2016 documentary film “Becoming Bulletproof.”

The jury was comprised of Alexandra Codina, Ajani AJ Murray and Xavier Romani.

MIAMI FILM FESTIVAL BEST TRAILER AWARD

WINNER: Joe Hackman’s trailer for Knife+Heart

The award is presented by Oolite Arts. The winning editor will receive an invitation and honorarium as a guest of the 2021 Miami Film Festival as an Oolite Arts Skills Master Class Lecturer.

The jury was comprised of Tabare Blanchard.

MIAMI FILM FESTIVAL BEST POSTER AWARD

WINNER: Edel Rodriguez’s poster for “Fragile

The award is presented by Oolite Arts. The winning designer will receive an invitation and honorarium as a guest of the 2021 Miami Film Festival as an Oolite Arts Skills Master Class Lecturer.

The jury was comprised of Xander Robin.

RENE RODRIGUEZ CRITICS AWARD

WINNER: Jennifer Kent’s The Nightingale

The award is presented to the filmmaker of one film of any genre and any length voted on by all accredited film critics covering the annual Festival, for the film they consider the best of that year’s selection.

The jury was comprised of Rene Rodriguez.

AUDIENCE AWARD – BEST FEATURE

WINNER: Billy Corben’s SCREWBALL

Produced by Miami-based company Rakontur.

The award is presented to the filmmaker of the Festival audience’s choice of best non-documentary feature (60 min or more).

AUDIENCE AWARD – BEST SHORT

WINNER: Jose Navas’ “The Rafter

The award is presented to the filmmaker of the Festival audience’s choice of best non-documentary short (30 min or less) of the entire Official Selection.

The jury was comprised of Lori Davis, Cassius Corrigan and Chad Tingle.

WOLFSON CINEMASLAM COMPETITION

Winners

BEST USE OF ARCHIVAL FOOTAGE FROM WOLFSON ARCHIVES

$5,000 cash prize: Xiao Che’s “Happy to Be Happy

WOLFSON CINEMASLAM CHAMPION

$500 cash Sara Fuller Scholarship from FilmFlorida: Alejandro Gonzalez Valdés’ “Chess”

WOLFSON CINEMASLAM BEST DIRECTOR

Andrew García’s “The Skin of Yesterday”

WOLFSON CINEMASLAM BEST WRITING

Alejandro Gonzalez Valdés’ “Chess”

WOLFSON CINEMASLAM BEST ACTOR

Andrés Nicolás Chavez, “The Skin of Yesterday”

WOLFSON CINEMASLAM BEST ACTRESS

Paulina Gálvez, “Escapé”

WOLFSON CINEMASLAM BEST TECHNICAL ACHIEVEMENT

Chantal Gabriel’s “The Chase”

WIP Grants

Wolfson CinemaSlam Works-In-Progress Grants for Films That Will Contain Archival Footage From Wolfson Archives:

  • “Can of Beans” (Miami International University of Art & Design, directed by Paul Alvarado, Roberto Tula)
  • In Human Kind” (Miami Dade College, directed by Juancho Rodriguez)
  • Lonely is the Night” (Miami Dade College, directed by Gian Luca Laplume)
  • “Sal and Vinny” (Florida International University, directed Lucia Plaza)
  • “Celestial” (New York Film Academy – South Beach, directed by Bruklyn Miller)
  • “Wade in the Water: Drowning in Racism” (University of Miami, directed by Cathleen Dean)

The competition is presented by the Lynn & Louis Wolfson II Family Foundation. The purpose of CinemaSlam is to foster excellence in student filmmaking, encourage the utilization of archival footage* in visual storytelling, and expose students to the value of film festivals in connecting their work with public audiences and industry professionals.