Valley of Exile directed by Ana Fahr
Valley of Exile directed (Morning Bird Pictures)

Ana Fahr’s Valley of Exile was named Best Film (Narrative Feature), and Asley Malcolm Morrison’s Back To Your Corner won the award for Best Documentary Feature at the 19th Harlem International Film Festival (Hi).

Other top awards went to Kelly Fyffe-Marshall’s When Morning Comes for Best World Film (Narrative) and Cionin Lorenzo and Pearlette J. Ramos’ Three (Extra) Ordinary Women took the prize for Best World Documentary.

Harlem International Film Festival Program Director Nasri Zacharia said, “Our 19th edition was bolstered by our partnerships and support from the Columbia University Zuckerman Institute, Maysles Documentary Center, and the NYC Media and Entertainment office which allowed us to offer free screenings to the public and greater access for our filmmakers and their films. This year shined once more with our unique blend of global cinema and local films and each of our winning films truly exemplified that.?

Additional film and filmmaker awards went to; Maximina Juson’s One Person, One Vote?, which won the Audience Award; Shawn Antoine II’s For Those That Lived There (Best Experimental Film); Darren Press and C. Fraser Press’A Cow In the Sky (Best Animation); Stefan Verna’s Cyano Sun Suite – Null Island (Best Music Video), Benjamin Steger’s Vibrations: Offerings (Winning Episode); and Andreas Waldenmaier’s Nirwana Gold (Best Virtual Reality).

Leading the individual awards, Balbinka Korzeniowska won The Mira Nair Award for Rising Female Filmmaker for her work on Playing Through, and Jean-Pierre Caner won Best Narrative Director for Stakes is High, while Christopher Nostrand won Best Documentary Director for Firefly: The Tay Fisher Story. Ashely Ortega was named Best Actress for her work in As If It’s True.

The Harlem International Film Festival’s commitment to celebrating and promoting the work of local filmmakers this year yielded wins for; Emily Leibow’s Skate Night (New York Vision Award); Jade Bryan’s What Somalia Wants (Harlem Spotlight Award – Narrative); Colin Still’s Sing! Fight! Sing! Fight! From Leroi To Amiri (Harlem Spotlight Award – Documentary); Wes Andre Goodrich’s Speak Up Brotha! (Harlem Spotlight Award – Narrative Short); Safiya Songhai’s Interception: Jayne Kennedy – American Sportscaster (Harlem Spotlight Award – Documentary Short); Shaun Vivaris’ Bronx Park Thunder (Uptown Award – Narrative); and Ian Phillips’ The Book of Days (Uptown Award – Documentary).

Awards for Short Films went to; Morad Mostafa ‘s I Promise You Paradise for Best Short Film – Narrative; John Beder’s How To Sue the Klan for Best Short Film – Documentary; Julian J. Delacruz’s Pen, Again for Best Short Short; Andrew Baker Taylor and Andrew Yuen’s Project: KLB2 for Best Youth Short Film (Narrative), and Emilio Marti López’s Little Sahara for Best Youth Short Film (Documentary).

Hi screenwriting competition winners include Joe Villanti’s “Black Mountain” winning Best Feature Screenplay and Ryan Fenson-Hood’s “No Rules Radio” winning Best Short Screenplay.



Best Film
Valley of Exile
Director: Ana Fahr

Best Documentary Feature
Return to Your Corner
Director: Ashley Malcolm Morrison

Best World Film
When Morning Comes
Director: Kelly Fyffe-Marshall

Best World Documentary
Three (Extra) Ordinary Women
Directors: Cionin Lorenzo, Pearlette J Ramos

Audience Award
One Person, One Vote?
Director: Maximina Juson

Best Experimental Film
For Those That Lived There
Director: Shawn Antoine II

Best Animation
A Cow In the Sky
Directors: Darren Press, C. Fraser Press

Best Music Video
Cyano Sun Suite – Null Island
Director: Stefan Verna

Winning Episode
Vibrations: Offerings
Director: Benjamin Steger

Best VR (Virtual Reality)
Nirwana Gold
Director: Andreas Waldenmaier


Mira Nair Award for Rising Female Filmmaker
Balbinka Korzeniowska (Playing Through)

Best Narrative Director
Jean-Pierre Caner (Stakes is High)

Best Documentary Director
Christopher Nostrand (Firefly: The Tay Fisher Story)

Best Actress
Asley Ortega (As if it’s True)


New York Vision Award
Skate Night
Director: Emily Leibow

Harlem Spotlight (Narrative Feature)
What Somalia Wants
Director: Jade Bryan

Harlem Spotlight (Documentary Feature)
Sing! Fight! Sing! Fight! From Leroi To Amiri
Director: Colin Still

Harlem Spotlight (Narrative Short)
Speak Up Brotha!
Director: Wes Andre Goodrich

Harlem Spotlight (Documentary Short)
Interception: Jayne Kennedy – American Sportscaster
Director: Safiya Songhai

Uptown Award – Narrative
Bronx Park Thunder
Director: Shaun Vivaris

Uptown Award – Documentary
The Book of Days
Director: Ian Phillips


Best Short Narrative
I Promse You Paradise
Director: Morad Mostafa

Best Short Documentary
How To Sue The Klan
Director: John Beder

Best Short Short
Pen, Again
Director: Julian J. Delacruz

Best Youth Short (Narrative)
Project: KLB2
Directors: Andrew Baker Taylor, Andrew Yuen

Best Youth Short (Documentary)
Little Sahara
Director: Emilio Marti López


Best Feature Screenplay
“Black Mountain”
Writer: Joe Villanti

Best Short Screenplay
“No Rules Radio”
Writer: Ryan Fenson-Hood

Feature Screenplay Finalists
Writer: Christine LeVeaux Haley

Writer: Ken Joy Ukwu

“The Amazing Days of Alex Mazze ”
Writers: Christopher Harmon, Alex Mazze Maisonette

“The Pickleball Killer”
Writer: Jim Carroll

“The Porter”
Writer: Megan Breen

“The Seduction of Auntie Rose”
Writer: Alpha Blair

Short Screenplay Finalists
“An Ocean Journey”
Writers: Victoria Dook, Rick Harvey

“How Possible”
Writer: D.K. Nwosu

Share ...

Subscribe for Blog Updates

Sign up for our latest updates.

Please follow us to get updates online.