Miami Film Festival’s Knight Competition consists of dramatic works competing for $40,000 in prizes courtesy of James L. & John S. Knight Foundation.

Competing films are eligible for a $30,000 USD Knight Grand Jury Prize that will be split between the lead production company and the U.S. distributor of the film. If no U.S. distributor is secured before 30 days after the close of the Festival, then the full award will be made to the lead production company. The Grand Jury will also award two cash prizes of $5,000 totaling $10,000 in additional funds, one for Best Director and one for Best Performance. There are no restrictions on dividing prizes among different films, and the jury may elect to award as many prizes to one film as it wishes.



A Grand Jury consisting of Ciro Guerra, Manuel Martín Cuenca, and Ximena Camino selected Diego Lerman’s A Sort of Family (Una Especie de Familia) as the Grand Prize winner of the 35th edition of Miami Film Festival.


A Grand Jury consisting of filmmaker Michel Franco, Dublin International Film Festival director Grainne Humphreys and Knight Foundation Arts Program Director Bahia Ramos selected Cristián Jiménez and Alicia Scherson’s Vida de Familia (Family Life) as the Grand Prize winner of the 34th edition of Miami Film Festival. Sold by Ryan Kampe’s Visit Films, the company’s US distribution label Monument Releasing released Family Life in theaters around the United States with the support of the $30,000 cash Grand Prize.

Family Life Main (002)


A Grand Jury consisting of filmmakers Kyle Patrick Alvarez, Trey Edward Shults and Selton Mello selected Jacques Audiard’s Dheepan as the Grand Prize winner of the 33rd edition of the Festival, marking Dheepan’s second top international award – after first winning the Palme d’Or of the 2015 Cannes Film Festival. Already secured for US distribution by IFC Films, $15,000 of the $30K prize was forwarded to the New York City-based company, while the remaining $15,000 went to lead producer Why Not Productions of Paris, France.



Internationally-awarded debut feature, A Wolf at the Door (O Lobo atrás da porta), by Fernando Coimbra was the Grand Prize winner at the 31st edition of the Festival, and its US distribution was secured by Paul Hudson from Outsider Pictures. The film will be released in theaters in New York and Los Angeles either in late-Fall or early in 2015, and will then play art-houses across the country.  The prize allowed for a “test release” of the film in Miami over the summer garnering positive results, giving Outsider Pictures the confidence to push for a wider release. Coimbra also took home the Festival’s $5,000 Best Director Award.



Ana Guevara and Leticia Jorge’s debut film Tanta agua (So Much Water), Grand Prize winner of the Knight Ibero-American Competition at the 30th Miami International Film Festival, locked a North American distribution deal with the New York-based company Film Movement.



The second feature film directed by Cristián Jiménez, Bonsaí was the big winner at the 2012 Festival, winning the $30,000 Grand Prize sponsored by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. U.S. distribution was secured by Strand Releasing. Jiménez also took home the Festival’s $5,000 Jordan A. Ressler Screenwriting Award.