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United States vs. Reality Winner

The 26th annual Nantucket Film Festival (NFF) wrapped with the award winners including the recipients of the Adrienne Shelly Foundation Excellence in Filmmaking Award and of the Tony Cox Screenplay Competition.

Sonia Kennebeck, the director of United States vs. Reality Winner, was named the recipient of the 2021 Adrienne Shelly Foundation Excellence in Filmmaking Award at the 2021 Nantucket Film Festival. The award includes a $5,000 grant to an emerging female filmmaker in honor of writer, director, and actor Adrienne Shelly and her contributions to film.

Kennebeck’s riveting documentary follows the story of 25-year-old NSA contractor Reality Winner, who disclosed one document about Russian election interference to the media and became the number one leak target of the Trump administration. On June 14, Winner was released from prison to serve her remaining sentence in a halfway house program.

In the Tony Cox Screenplay Competition, which recognizes the best unproduced screenplays and television pilots submitted to the Festival by emerging writers. Sonja Perryman received the top prize as the winner of the Feature Screenplay competition for THE 84. Katherine Sainte Marie won the Short Screenplay Competition with her script The Little Monster of Ravenswood Manor. The Episodic 60 Minute Pilot Competition nod went to James Howells for Second Crossing. Jade Edwards’ Head First was named the winner of the 30 Minute Episodic Category. All categories receive a cash prize, while the Feature category also comes with a coveted all-expenses-paid spot in Screenwriters Colony’s month-long writer’s retreat on Nantucket in October.

Sonja Perryman’s THE 84 follows fourteen-year-old Shay in South Central Los Angeles in 1968 as she sets off on a journey to find her father, and, in the process, faces truths about herself and her family that will prove to be transformational. Katherine Sainte Marie’s The Little Monster of Ravenswood Manor follows an insolent child as she torments her family in an old English manor, but soon discovers the family harbors a dark and dangerous secret about their ancestral home. In Head First by Jade Edwards, busy attorney Saya, in the final weeks of pregnancy, struggles with impending motherhood. James Howells’ Second Crossing follows the new sheriff of a small Colorado town as she investigates the strange death of a man who seemingly plummeted from the heavens.

“We extend a huge congratulations to this year’s Adrienne Shelly Foundation Excellence in Filmmaking and Tony Cox Screenplay Competition – we are so excited to see what’s next for these incredible projects and their talented creators,” said Mystelle Brabbée, Executive Director of the Nantucket Film Festival and Basil Tsiokos, Film Program Director of the Nantucket Film Festival. “Additionally, we are thrilled to be extending the festival for another seven days for our audiences and are so grateful to the filmmakers, staff, and sponsors who helped make the festival possible this year.”

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