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2016 IFP Gotham Awards to Present Appreciation Award to NYC Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment

by Erik Luers on October 27, 2016

New York, NY (October 27, 2016) The Independent Filmmaker Project (IFP), the nation’s premier member organization of independent filmmakers and storytellers, announced today that the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment will receive a special Appreciation Award at this year’s Gotham Awards ceremony on Monday, November 28th. In recognition of the 50th Anniversary of New York City’s Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting, the IFP and the Gotham Awards are celebrating the Agency’s fifty-year legacy of supporting storytelling in New York City. Commissioner Julie Menin, of the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment, and Deputy Mayor Alicia Glen will receive the Appreciation Award at the event.  Menin and Glen will then honor two outstanding members of NYC’s creative community with “Made in NY” awards at the ceremony: Aziz Ansari, star, writer and director of MASTER OF NONE, a Netflix original comedy series loosely based on his own life experiences in New York; and Judith Light, the award-winning actress, producer, and LGBT activist.

“MOME has played an integral role in the growth and prosperity of the media industry in New York City over the past fifty years. Their efforts have not only created jobs and bolstered the creative economy, but also created opportunities for the many diverse communities of our city to contribute to the cultural landscape through arts and entertainment,” said Joana Vicente, Executive Director of IFP and the Made in NY Media Center.

In 1966, Mayor John Lindsay established New York City’s first official film commission with the goal of addressing the issues that were keeping many filmmakers and producers from bringing their productions to the city. This agency quickly eliminated much of the red tape previously involved by giving the Department of Commerce the authority to issue a single permit to allow for filming in city-owned locations and abolishing the city officials’ ability to censor content of films shot in the spaces. In addition, Mayor Lindsay appointed aides to help the industry negotiate shooting on privately-owned property, and established a police unit to control crowds and ensure safety of the public during shooting. His efforts to make it easier for the industry to bring production to New York City paid off immediately, increasing production 100 percent and brining an estimated $20 million in revenue to the city within the first year.

Since the founding of the Office of Film, Theatre & Broadcasting under MOME, the mission to grow New York City’s media industry has expanded to include many initiatives from continuing to facilitate local production through one-stop permits, production incentives, and marketing credits, to fostering a diverse and dynamic creative community with training programs, career panels, and strong industry engagement. The film and television industry within New York City has seen continuous growth over the past fifty years and now contributes nearly $9 billion and over 130,000 jobs to the city’s economy.

“We are thrilled to receive this honor from the IFP and Gotham Awards, recognizing our Agency’s fifty-year legacy of bringing magic to New York City and the world,” said Julie Menin, Commissioner of the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment, which oversees New York City’s Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting. “Through the years, so many dedicated professionals have brought their creativity and drive to our streets, bringing one of the great essential characters to life: New York City. Simply put, there is no greater place to create film, theatre and television. Nor is there a greater talent pool than in New York City, which is exemplified by our two honorees, Aziz Ansari and Judith Light.”

Established in 1991, the Gotham Awards is one of the leading honors for independent film and media, and the first of the film awards season. The Gothams provide critical early recognition to worthy independent films and their writers, directors, producers, and actors. The 2015 top film category winners were Spotlight (Best Feature), The Look of Silence (Best Documentary) and Tangerine (Audience Award).

Each year IFP chooses a jury of innovators and icons in documentary and feature film directing, producing, cinematography, and acting to bestow the Gotham’s competitive awards.

In addition to ten competitive categories, the Gotham Awards also recognize those who have made significant contributions to independent filmmaking by selecting individuals to single out in tribute.  Last year the organization honored director Todd Haynes, actors Robert Redford and Helen Mirren, and Founder and Managing Partner of Anonymous Content, Steve Golin. Additionally, a special Gotham Appreciation Award was given to Ellen Cotter for her contribution to theatrical distribution, including leadership of the Angelika Film Centers. The previously announced 2016 Tributes are Amy Adams, Ethan Hawke, Oliver Stone and Arnon Milchan.

Nominations were announced on October 20th and winners will be honored at a star-studded ceremony at Cipriani Wall Street on November 28th.  The event will be streamed live on our website. To purchase tables or tickets to attend, please contact Steven Pfeiffer by email at [email protected], or by phone at (212) 465-8200 Ext. 219.

The Premier Sponsor of the 2016 Gotham Awards is The New York Times, and the Platinum Sponsors are deep euphoria Calvin Klein and Greater Fort Lauderdale/Broward County Office of Film, Music and Entertainment.


About IFP

The Independent Filmmaker Project (IFP) champions the future of storytelling by connecting artists with essential resources at all stages of development and distribution. The organization fosters a vibrant and sustainable independent storytelling community through its year-round programs, which include Independent Film Week, Filmmaker Magazine, the Gotham Independent Film Awards and the Made in NY Media Center by IFP, a tech and media incubator space developed with the New York Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment.


IFP represents a growing network of storytellers around the world, and plays a key role in developing 350 new feature and documentary works each year. During its 37-year history, IFP has supported over 10,000+ projects and offered resources to more than 20,000+ filmmakers, including Debra Granik, Miranda July, Michael Moore, Dee Rees, and Benh Zeitlin. More info at


About the Gotham Independent Film Awards by IFP

The Gotham Independent Film Awards by IFP, selected by distinguished juries and presented in New York City, the home of independent film, are the first honors of the film awards season. This public showcase honors the filmmaking community, expands the audience for independent films, and supports the work that IFP does behind the scenes throughout the year to bring such films to fruition.


For information on attending:


About the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment:

The Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment (MOME) is comprised of two divisions. The Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting encompasses film, television, radio, theatre, music, advertising, publishing, digital content and real estate as it relates to the creation of creative content. It serves as a one-stop shop for the entertainment industry, which has seen explosive growth over the last year in New York City, contributing nearly $9 billion and over 130,000 jobs. The Office promotes New York City as a thriving center of creativity, issuing permits for productions filming on public property, and facilitating production throughout the five boroughs. The Agency also oversees NYC Media, the City’s official broadcast network and media production group, which has a reach of over 18 million people and provides programming for six local cable stations, including award-winning programs on the popular NYC Life (channel 25), as well as one radio station. You can also follow us on TwitterInstagram and Facebook.