The Camden International Film Festival wrapped its ninth edition, and announced the award winning films of the 2013 festival, with THE GENIUS OF MARIAN directed by Banker White and Anna Fitch winning the Harrell Award for Best Documentary Feature.  THE GENIUS OF MARIAN is described as an intimate family portrait that explores the heartbreak of Alzheimer’s disease, the power of art and the meaning of family. THE GENIUS OF MARIAN follows Pam White in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease as her son, the filmmaker, documents her struggle to hang on to a sense of self.

The Harrell Award for Best Documentary Feature Special Jury Mention went to EXPEDITION TO THE END OF THE WORLD directed by Daniel Dencik. On a three-mast schooner packed with artists, scientists and ambitions worthy of Noah or Columbus, we set off for the end of the world: the rapidly melting massifs of North-East Greenland. An epic journey where the brave sailors on board encounter polar bear nightmares, Stone Age playgrounds and entirely new species.

This year’s Emerging Cinematic Vision Award went to BENDING STEEL directed by Dave Carroll.  BENDING STEEL is a moving documentary, which follows Chris Schnoeck, an endearing yet unassuming man as he trains to become a professional oldtime strongman. 

A Special Emerging Cinematic Vision Jury Mention went to LAST DREAMS by Estephan Wagner. LAST DREAMS follows three women during their last month of life. Through them we get an intimate and honest picture of what it means to be close to death – stories of solitude, reconciliation and love during the process of saying goodbye. 

The Camden International Film Festival had two films tie for the 2013 Audience Award – Dave Carroll’s BENDING STEEL and Jillian Schlesinger’s MAIDENTRIP.

In addition to the award winning films, seven filmmakers took the stage of the Camden Opera House on Saturday, September 28 for the fourth annual Points North Pitch, part of CIFF’s Points North Documentary Forum that runs concurrently with the festival. The filmmakers pitched their documentary works-in-progress to a panel of funders broadcasters, distributors and producers. The 2013 Points North Pitch Award and Modulus Finishing Fund was given to Drew Xanthopoulos for THE SENSITIVES. 

CIFF’s partnership with The New York Times brought filmmakers to pitch their ideas for an Op-Doc as part of Points North Documentary Forum on Sunday, September 29 at Union Hall in Rockport. The winning pitch receives the opportunity to produce an Op-Doc for The New York Times with a budget of $2,000 (USD). This year’s 2013 winner was PROJECT NODAK directed by Lewis Wilcox and James Christenson.  

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