The Sheffield Doc/Fest announced the 2014 awards, including the Special Jury Award, Sheffield Innovation Award, Sheffield Green Award, Sheffield Youth Jury Award, Sheffield Student Doc Award, Sheffield Short Doc Award, The Tim Hetherington Award and the first ever Peter Wintonick Award.
Sheffield Doc/Fest’s Special Jury prize was awarded to Attacking The Devil: Harold Evans and the Last Nazi War Crime (directors Jacqui Morris & David Morris, United Kingdon/Canada, 2014, 99mins).
On behalf of the Special Jury Dawn Porter said: “We unanimously found this film to be an elegant examination of complex themes. We appreciated his film on all levels – it is a work approached with relevance and rigor, a historical film that feels contemporary and engaging, blossoms like a novel, and is surprising when least expected, epic in its scope, traversing decades and exploring big themes while revealing intimate details.” For the jury, Attacking the Devil is “a call to arms inviting us to examine our past as it celebrates and reminds us of the critical value of journalism.”
The Sheffield Green Award was awarded to Unearthed (Dir. Jolynn Minnaar, South Africa, 2014, 90mins).
Accepting her award Jolynn Minnaar said “I dedicate this award to filmmakers out there who are telling stories that matter. No matter how hard it is, keep going – it is worth it, I promise!”
The Special Jury also gave honorable mention to Night Will Fall (dir. Andre Singer, United Kingdom/Unites States/Israel, 2014, 75mins), which Dawn praised saying, “This intellectually bracing film reveals the power of documentary and why it matters. It challenges us to never take anything for granted. With skill and grace this film is a remarkable achievement reminding of the need to never forget.”
The Sheffield Innovation Award was awarded to A Short History of the Highrise (Dir. Katerina Cizek, Canada/United States, 2013, 17mins)
The Sheffield Youth Jury Award was awarded to The Internet’s Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz (Dir. Brian Knappenberger, United States, 2014, 105mins)
The Youth Jury also gave a special mention to Happiness (Dir. Thomas Balmès, France/Finland, 2013, 76mins) and thanked Hussain Currimbhoy and Sheffield Doc/fest for the “unique and life-changing” experience of sitting on a festival jury.
The Sheffield Green Award was awarded to Unearthed (Dir. Jolynn Minnaar, South Africa, 2014, 90mins). Accepting her award Jolynn Minnaar said “I dedicate this award to filmmakers out there who are telling stories that matter. No matter how hard it is, keep going – it is worth it, I promise!”
The Sheffield Student Doc Award was awarded to Our Curse (Dir. Tomasz Sliwinski, Poland, 2013, 28mins)
The Sheffield Short Doc Award, sponsored by the London Short Film Festival, was awarded to Amanda F***ing Palmer on the Rocks(Dir. Ondi Timoner, United States, 2014, 18mins)
The Tim Hetherington Award was awarded to Profession: Documentarist (Directors: Shirin Barghnavard, Firouzeh Khosrovani, Farhnaz Sharifi, Mina Keshavarz, Sepideh Abtahi, Sahar Salahshoor and Nahid Rezaei, Iran, 2014, 80mins)
Presented by Tim’s mother Judith Hetherington and Oli Harbottle (Dogwoof), the award celebrates the life and legacy of photojournalist and humanitarian Tim Hetherington, whose objectives as a filmmaker were to highlight the plight of people so often ignored by the world and mainstream media.
Accepting the award Sharin Barghnavard declared it an honour “to accept this precious award from Tim’s mother” and remembered Tim’s legacy as someone who “dedicated his own life to pass beyond the borders.”
The first ever Peter Wintonick Award, celebrating activist filmmaking, was awarded to Vessel (Dir. Diana Whitten, United States, 2014, 88mins)
This year the Inspiration Award was awarded to Laura Poitras. Poitras sent a message dedicating her award to Edward Snowden, Glenn Greenwald, Jacob Appelbaum, William Binney, Julian Assange and Sarah Harrison.
The Sheffield Doc/Fest 2014 award for Lifetime Achievement was presented to Roger Graef. Accepting the award Roger said “it’s true that when we take people’s pictures, we capture their souls and that is a great responsibility” and paid tribute to “those souls who have been brave enough to let us capture them.” He continued: “the privilege of fifty years of working in this industry has been to share the private lives of a great many people.”