The Festival’s Teen View Jury Award, selected by a group of Nantucket junior high school students, went to BIRTHDAY, written & directed by Chris King.
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Nantucket Film Festival Announces Winners

The 20th Anniversary Nantucket Film Festival (NFF) today announced the winners of the prestigious Showtime Tony Cox Screenplay Competition, which recognizes the best unproduced screenplays and television pilots by emerging writers. Kristen Dávila’s COUNTERINTELLIGENCE received the top prize as the winner of the Feature Screenplay Competition. The Television Pilot nods went to Estella Gabriel for ICE and to Jonathan Schwartz for SOLD.

NFF also revealed the winners of this year’s Audience Awards: Alfonso Gomez-Rejon’s ME AND EARL AND THE DYING GIRL for Best Narrative Feature, Ron Davis’ HARRY & SNOWMAN for Best Documentary Feature, and Eric Rockey’s PINK BOY for Best Short.

The Audience Award Best Film runner up was animated comedy SHAUN THE SHEEP THE MOVIE, written & directed by Richard Starzak & Mark Burton.

Kristen Dávila’s COUNTERINTELLIGENCE, a political satire set in Pakistan involving the CIA, a budding jihadist group, and an indebted gambler who plays the two off one another in an attempt to save his own neck. Dávila receives $5000 cash prize and one of only four coveted spots to participate in partner organization the Screenwriters Colony month-long writing retreat in October.

The Feature Screenplay Competition jury was comprised of
Kyle Patrick Alvarez, Director, The Stanford Prison Experiment; Franklin Leonard, Founder, The Black List; and Nigel M. Smith, Managing Editor, Indiewire.

NFF recognizes the remarkable renaissance on the small screen through two Television Pilot Competitions, one for Hour-Long Pilots and the other for Half-Hour Pilots. Both winners receive a $1000 cash prize, as well as a consultation with a Showtime executive.

The Half-Hour Television Pilot winner is SOLD by Jonathan Schwartz, which is set in a fine-arts auction house.

The Hour-Long Television Pilot winner is ICE by Estella Gabriel, which details the conflicts and violence faced by a border patrol agent.

The Television Pilot Competition jury was comprised of Jacob Fenton, Agent, TV Talent, United Talent Agency; Bob Fisher, Executive Producer/Co-Creator, Sirens; and Cynthia Littleton, Managing Editor, TV, Variety.

The Short Screenplay Competition winner is MORE COW BELL by Andy Nellis, a dark portrait of a farm family. Nellis receives a $500 cash prize.

The winner of the Best Screenwriting in a Short Film Award, given to an exceptional short film featured in this year’s festival, went to writer/director Shaka King and writer Kristan Sprague for MULIGNANS.

The Shorts Competition jury was comprised of New York film critic and author Thelma Adams; Kate Lyn Sheil, Actress, House of Cards & Writer, Men Go to Battle; and Trey Edward Shults, Writer/Director, Krisha.

The Festival’s Teen View Jury Award, selected by a group of Nantucket junior high school students, went to BIRTHDAY, written & directed by Chris King.

“We’re grateful to our juries and to the hugely supportive festival audience for recognizing these talented filmmakers. From our lineup of films to the amazing filmmakers and talent who attended, the 20th anniversary festival exceeded our expectations,” said Basil Tsiokos, Nantucket Film Festival Film Program Director. “We are thrilled to be able to bring a program with such a vast array of entertainment to the Nantucket community, and look forward to the next two decades and beyond!”

Earlier this weekend, the winner of the ninth annual Adrienne Shelly Foundation Excellence in Filmmaking Award was announced, which bestows a cash prize to a female filmmaker in honor of the late director. The award went to director Crystal Moselle for her acclaimed debut documentary, THE WOLFPACK.

Nantucket Film Festival
Nantucket Film Festival

Legendary comedian David Steinberg hosted the Screenwriters Tribute Awards, presented by EPIX, from the Siaconset Casino on Saturday, June 27. Academy®-Award & Golden Globe®– winning screenwriter Robert Towne accepted the Screenwriting Tribute Award, which was given to him by Nantucket Film Festival board member and MSNBC’s Chris Matthews. Managing Editor, TV at Variety Cynthia Littleton introduced actress Robin Wright who presented Beau Willimon with Variety’s Creative Impact in Television Writing award. Academy Award®-nominated and Emmy Award®-winning producer/director Liz Garbus, accepted the A&E Special Achievement in Documentary Storytelling Award, presented to her by NFF co-founder Jonathan Burkhart, while the New Voices in Screenwriting was presented to Leslye Headland by Jill Burkhart of EPIX and a co-founder of the Festival.

Special guests who attended NFF 2015 included Festival co-founders Jill & Jonathan Burkhart, Robin Wright, Theo James, Alex Ross Perry, Donick Cary, Ophira Eisenberg, Lili Taylor, Jacqueline Bisset, Liz Garbus, Leslye Headland, Robert Towne, Beau Willimon, Dave Foley, Tom Cavanagh, EPIX CEO & President Mark Greenberg, and many more.

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