2015 was a remarkable year for the IAFOR Documentary Film Award & Festival. New records were set in several areas, from number of entries to representation by country. Our goal to be a global competition which encompasses the world’s many important stories is further realized with each Film Award. We are so thankful and honored by the many documentarians that entered the competition and shared their work with us.

2015 Finalists

Our final round of judging featured several documentaries of the highest quality. Our judging panel found great merit in all of our finalists’ works and would like to honor them by name in this post:

Angels in Motion
Directed by Austin Smock

How I Became A Refugee
Directed by Marilyn Metta

Platinum Power
Directed by Amy Rowland, Nikitha Ranjit & Antoniya Gerimpapazi

Pride, Pole & Prejudice
Directed by Rebecca Graham

Miss Tibet: Beauty in Exile
Directed by Norah Shapiro

Tohoku Tomo
Directed by Wesley Julian

Travelling Light
Directed by Conxi Fornieles

White Mushroom, Black Earth
Directed by Mengxi Rao

2015 Award Winners

Our judges have selected three films from the final round as this year’s Official Festival Selection. All three of these films are winners in their respective categories:

Best Newcomer – Feature Documentary

The Land Of Many PalacesThe Land of Many Palaces
Directed by Adam James Smith & Song Ting

Judges’ Comments:

“The Land of Many Palaces is an important and sobering story about the changes taking place in modern day China. The documentary is well-told and beautifully shot.

We are truly in love with this doc. Very stylistically done without narration. The story unfolds naturally and powerfully through image and the voices of the subjects.”

Best Professional – Feature Documentary

Gazelle - The Love IssueGazelle – The Love Issue
Directed by Cesar Terranova

Judges’ Comments:

An interesting story and well executed. The opening is excellent. Wonderful pacing with edits to music. Good choice in music selection throughout. Nice transitions…spot-on! While Gazelle, the doc’s subject, is somewhat self-indulgent (well, it is about a drag artist!), the documentary is nonetheless very compelling and well made.

Best Documentary – Grand Prize

Directed by Elliot Spencer

Judges’ Comments:

Stunningly shot. Reminiscent of a “National Geographic” film…the visuals are amazing and it touches on some important issues affecting life in the Solomon Islands.

Really outstanding. All the close-up shots gave us process without “giving away the store” early on. The camera work was excellent!

Wonderful! Texture, closeups, sound, lighting, cinematography all top notch. This is a first-rate example of what a quality documentary should be. A winner!

Thank You

Once again, thank you to all our entrants, judges, supporters, and audience members. The success of this year’s Film Award & Festival will inevitably lead to a bigger and more dynamic event in 2016.

Preparations for IDFA2016 are currently underway. Please Sign Up for our Newsletter Like Us on Facebook and Follow Us on Twitter to get up-to-date information on next year’s Film Award & Festival.

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