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IFP and Slated announce 1st Ever Festival Genius Audience Award

by Website Update on September 9, 2011

IFP and Slated are proud to announce a new award for the 20th Anniversary Gotham Independent Film Awards – the 1st Ever Festival Genius Audience Award


Five (5) Audience Award winning films from top 50 US and Canadian film festivals compete for the new award.

New York, NY (November 9, 2010) – The Independent Filmmaker Project (IFP), the nation’s oldest and largest organization of independent filmmakers and Slated (Owner of Festival Genius) announced last night at a star-studded nominee event sponsored by Alfred Dunhill that the 20th Anniversary Gotham Independent Film AwardsÔ will give a new award called the FESTIVAL GENIUS AUDIENCE AWARD at the 20th Anniversary Gotham Independent Film Awards on November 29th at Cipriani Wall Street.  The nominees were announced at the Alfred Dunhill store in New York City by the consummate actor of stage, TV and film, Oliver Platt (The Big C, and Best Ensemble nominee, Please Give).

This new award celebrates audience award winners from across the Top 50 US and Canadian film festivals. Over 12,000 votes came in to narrow the list of 26 audience award winning films down to the 5 nominees.  The nominated films are:

Winter’s Bone, directed by Debra Granik, also nominated for three other Gotham Awards including Best Feature, Best Ensemble and Breakthrough Actor for Jennifer Lawrence.  Winter’s Bone won the audience award for feature film at the 2010 San Francisco and Traverse City Film Festivals.

Waiting for Superman, directed by Davis Guggenheim, which won the audience award for documentary at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival.

White Irish Drinkers, directed by John Gray, which won the audience award for feature film at the 2010 Woodstock Film Festival.

9000 Needles directed by Doug Dearth, which won the audience award for best documentary at the 2010 Phoenix Film Festival.

Brotherhood, directed by Will Canon, which won the audience award for best feature at the 2010 South by Southwest Film Festival (SXSW).

Voting will begin again on November 10 to select a final winner from the top 5 nominees and ends on November 29th at 5 pm EST.  Filmgoers can vote online for their favorite film at

Two lucky voters will win one night’s stay at the Andaz Wall Street in New York City plus two tickets to the IFP Gotham Awards.

“We are thrilled to share IFP’s first Festival Genius Audience Award in partnership with Slated at our 20th Anniversary Gotham Awards,” said Joana Vicente, Executive Director of the IFP. “The purpose of the award is to promote films on the festival circuit through audience participation. This year we launch a true audience award, where the independent film community gets a chance vote for their favorite films.”

IFP’s 20th Anniversary Gotham Independent Film Awards ceremony will be held on Monday, November 29 at Cipriani Wall Street.  As the first major awards of the film season, the Gotham Independent Film Awards provide critical early recognition and media attention to worthy independent films. Previous winners for Best Feature and Best Documentary include THE HURT LOCKER (2009), FOOD, INC (2009), FROZEN RIVER (2008), TROUBLE THE WATER (2008), INTO THE WILD (2007), SICKO (2007), HALF NELSON (2006), CAPOTE (2005), MURDERBALL (2005) and SIDEWAYS (2004). The awards are also unique for their ability to assist in catapulting its Breakthrough Actor recipients prominently into national awards season attention, including recent winners and ultimate Oscar® contenders: Melissa Leo (2008), Ellen Page (2007), Rinko Kikuchi (2006), Amy Adams (2005) and Catalina Sandino Moreno (2004).

Awards will be given out across six competitive categories including: Best Feature, Best Documentary, Breakthrough Director, Breakthrough Actor, Best Ensemble Performance and Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near YouÒ.  In addition actors Robert Duvall and Hilary Swank, director Darren Aronofsky and Focus Features CEO, James Schamus, will each be presented with a career tribute.

Previous nominees were announced and are listed at

The Premier sponsors of the 2010 Gotham Independent Film Awards are The New York Times and The Royal Bank of Canada. RBC is also the sponsor of the Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near You award.   IFP welcomes new presenting sponsor of the Actress Tribute award, euphoria Calvin Klein and presenting sponsor, Fox Searchlight; returning sponsor Focus Features, Official Spirit, Russian Standard Vodka, Official Hotel, Andaz Wall Street, Official Vehicle, BMW and preferred sponsor of the Breakthrough Director and Breakthrough Actor Awards, Alfred Dunhill.  The Gotham Awards will be promoted nationally in an eight-page special advertising section in The New York Times on Friday, November 19, 2010.

About Independent Filmmaker Project (IFP)

The Independent Filmmaker Project (IFP) is the nation’s oldest and largest not-for-profit advocacy organization for independent filmmakers.  Since its debut at the 1979 New York Film Festival, IFP has supported the production of over 7,000 films and offered resources to more than 20,000 filmmakers, providing an opportunity for many diverse voices to be heard. IFP believes that independent films enrich the universal language of cinema, seeding the global culture with new ideas, kindling awareness, and fostering activism. The organization has championed early work by pioneering, independent filmmakers, including Charles Burnett, Edward Burns, Jim Jarmusch, Barbara Kopple, Michael Moore, Mira Nair and Kevin Smith.

IFP represents a network of 10,000 filmmakers in New York City and around the world. Through its workshops, seminars, conferences, mentorships and Filmmaker Magazine, IFP schools its members in the art, technology and business of independent filmmaking.  The year-round program includes an Independent Film Week, The Gotham Awards, Filmmaking Labs and Seminars, and a range of programs to promote racial, ethnic, religious, ideological, gender and sexual diversity. IFP, often in collaboration with other cultural institutions, builds audiences by hosting premieres and special screenings.  The IFP fosters the development of 300 feature and documentary films each year. Recently, the organization licensed the popular Festival Genius software platform through which IFP now reaches over 200,000 film fans worldwide.

For more information:

About the Gotham Independent Film Awards™

The Gotham Independent Film Awards, 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:

For More Information, Elena Zilberman, 42West, [email protected]