HIFF Highlights & Awards, So Far


All photos by Lisa Tamburini. 

For those itching to catch some fresh cinema, hurry on out there as today is officially the last day of the Hamptons International Film Festival.

There are still a few more films to see, including the Closing Night Film, “American Pastoral.” After that, it’s all over except the Audience Award voting.

Speaking of votes, here’s a bit of breaking news out of the official HIFF camp:

The Hamptons International Film Festival today announced their award winners at a ceremony in East Hampton. The biggest winners so far, as far as I’m concerned are the living legend D.A. Pennebaker and venerable filmmaker Chris Hegedus–both of Sag Harbor– who were awarded the  Zelda Penzel Giving Voice to the Voiceless Award for their film, “Unlocking the Cage” about animal rights. Here’s a trailer of the film that goes a long way to raise public awareness about the moral and ethical treatment and the rights of animals. Bravo!

Enjoy these photos from the festival, by Lisa Tamburini.

And also, here are the rest of the award winners, so far:

  • GLORY, directed by Kristina Grozeva & Petar Valchanov won the Award for Best Narrative Feature, presented by the Wall Street Journal. THE EAGLE HUNTRESS, directed by Otto Bell, received the Award for Best Documentary Feature, sponsored by ID Films. THE SILENCE, directed by Ali Asgari & Farnoosh Samadi, and IRREGULARS, directed by Fabio Palmieri, received the Award for Best Narrative Short Film and for Best Documentary Short Film, respectively.
  • DIVINES, directed by Houda Benyamina, received an Honorable Mention for Narrative Feature, and THOSE WHO JUMP, directed by Estephan Wagner, Moritz Siebert & Abou Bakar Sidibé, received an Honorable Mention for Documentary Feature.
  • The Tangerine Entertainment Juice Fund Award was awarded to WAKEFIELD, directed by Robin Swicord. This award honors an outstanding female narrative filmmaker.
  • BLACK SWELL, directed by Jake Honig, was awarded the Suffolk County Next Exposure Grant. This program supports the completion of high quality, original, director-driven, low-budget independent films from both emerging and established filmmakers who have completed 50% of principal photography within Suffolk County. The film was awarded a $3,000 grant.
  • DISTURBING THE PEACE, directed by Stephen Apkon & Andrew Young, was awarded the 2016 Brizzolara Family Foundation Award for a Film of Conflict and Resolution.
  • LOVING was presented with the Victor Rabinowitz & Joanne Grant Award for Social Justice. The award was presented to writer/director Jeff Nichols by Mark Rabinowitz at the festival’s opening night on Thursday, October 6th. The annual award is handed to a film that exemplifies the values of peace, equality, global justice and civil liberties, and is named after iconic civil rights lawyer Victor Rabinowitz and his wife Joanne, an author, filmmaker and journalist. Aaron Eckhart was presented with Variety’s Creative Impact in Acting Award.

    A few previously announced winners:

  • Victor Rabinowitz and Joanne Grant Award for Social Justice:  LOVING, written/directed by Jeff Nichols
  • Variety’s Creative Impact in Acting Award : Aaron Eckhart, BLEED FOR THIS and SULLY
  • HIFF Career Achievement Award : Edward Norton, BUNKER77 (executive producer), BIRDMAN OR (THE UNEXPECTED VIRTUE OF IGNORANCE), COLLATERAL BEAUTY

This year’s HIFF Narrative Feature Jury included:

  • David Edelstein, Chief film critic for New York Magazine, NPR’s Fresh Air, and regular commentator for CBS Sunday Morning; Chairman of the New York Critics Circle
  • Mariska Hargitay, Emmy® and Golden Globe® Award winning actress known for Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
  • John Krokidas, writer/director, KILL YOUR DARLINGS


This year’s HIFF Documentary Feature Jury included:

  • Alexis Alexanian, President of Production at Locomotive & NYWIFT Board of Director
  • Jason Janego, former Co-Founder and Co-President of RADiUS
  • Julie Goldstein, President of Production at Endgame Entertainment & formerly of HBO and Miramax

And the 2016 VARIETY 10 ACTORS T0 WATCH included:

  • Riz Ahmed, UNA & The Night Of
  • Mahershala Ali, MOONLIGHT, House of Cards, Luke Cage
  • Rachel Brosnahan, PATRIOTS DAY, BOOMTOWN, House of Cards
  • Alden Ehrenreich, HAIL, CESAR!, RULES DON’T APPLY
  • Tavi Gevinson, The Crucible (Broadway), ENOUGH SAID
  • Aja Naomi King, THE BIRTH OF A NATION, How to Get Away With Murder
  • John Legend, LA LA LAND, Oscar®-winning songwriter (SELMA)


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