In July 2008, members of our community came together to develop a cultural institution that would host a world-class film festival and nurture the community and culture of film in Milwaukee. That effort was spearheaded by three community leaders whose generosity and vision laid the foundation for what Milwaukee Film is today. While leading the Argosy Foundation, philanthropist Chris Abele, along with Carmen and Bill Haberman of the Herzfeld Foundation, contributed time and resources early on when we needed it most, and they continue to support our work today. It is because of this that we honor them with the annual presentation of our two Founders Awards.
ABELE CATALYST AWARD
Chris Abele believes in the positive impact Milwaukee Film has on the community. As someone who has been with us from the beginning, he has brought to Milwaukee Film the spirit that drives us today: to aim high, think big, and understand that you can always go further. The Abele Catalyst Award is given annually to the person or organization whose generous support for Milwaukee Film is inspired by a similar interest in having a catalytic and long-lasting positive impact on our community through film.
This year, that honoree is Marianne Lubar.
Marianne is a visionary leader of Milwaukee’s arts community. Her passion for the arts and the vital role they play in building a greater Milwaukee has been instrumental in making our arts community what it is today. That community, with the generous support and leadership of Marianne, her husband, Sheldon, and the entire Lubar family, has become a cornerstone of why Milwaukee is a great place to live, work, and play today.
Marianne Lubar is the kind of person who gives us the strength and vitality to grow, both for ourselves and for our community. Her steadfast support and understanding of the role film has in shaping a modern arts community inspires us daily. To use her words, “The power of film goes way beyond entertainment; in fact, I seldom walk out of a good movie without thinking I’ve really learned something. The Milwaukee Film Festival is for everyone of every age; that is part of its great appeal.”
HERZFELD COMPETITION AWARD
The Herzfeld Foundation’s deep commitment to helping innovative arts and arts education programs thrive in Milwaukee served as a guiding force during our organization’s growth. The foundation’s legacy of being a steadfast advocate for the value of art in our community inspired us to name an award in its honor. Each year, our Competition Program, presented by The Heil Family Foundation, showcases a selection of films believed to embody the spirit of innovation and recognizes the highest artistic possibilities in film today. The $10,000 Herzfeld Competition Award is awarded annually by a jury of film industry members to one filmmaker from our Competition Program (p. 38) who best exemplifies that program’s spirit.
THE 2013 HERZFELD COMPETITION AWARD
War Witch (dir. Kim Nguyen)
• Crulic - The Path to Beyond (2012)
• Nothing’s All Bad (2011)
• Somewhere Between (2011)
• A Brand New Life (2010)
• My Perestroika (2010)
• Munyurangabo (2009)
2013 SPECIAL JURY PRIZE, COMPETITION
12 O’Clock Boys (dir. Lotfy Nathan)
• Honorable Mention, 2012 - 5 Broken Cameras (dirs. Emad Burnat, Guy Davidi)
• Acting, 2012 - Saul Williams, Tey
• Directing, 2012 - Mohammad Rasoulof, Goodbye
ALLAN H. (BUD) AND SUZANNE L. SELIG AUDIENCE AWARDS
We are proud to once again present the Allan H. (Bud) and Suzanne L. Selig Audience Awards for Best Feature Film and Best Short Film. The Seligs’ continuous visionary support of Milwaukee Film is a validation of the community-wide effort to present the premier film festival in the region and to build Milwaukee Film into a vibrant, year-round cultural institution centered on film.
BEST FEATURE FILM, 2013
The Inevitable Defeat of Mister and Pete (2013)
• Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God (2012)
• Louder Than A Bomb (2011)
• Waiting for “Superman” (2010)
• Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire (2009)
BEST SHORT FILM, 2013
Eddie Adams: Saigon '68 (2013)
• Magic Piano (2012)
• The Wheel (2011)
• Drunk History: Tesla & Edison (2010)
• The Violinist (2009)
Awarded annually to one Milwaukee filmmaker from the Cream City Cinema Program (p. 46), the Milwaukee Filmmaker-In-Residence prize offers a yearlong residency program with Milwaukee Film. The 2014 residency includes a mentorship program, a $5,000 cash prize, and a production services package, sponsored by Independent, North American Camera, and RDI Stages, valued at more than $20,000 to help winners produce their next film.
2013 MILWAUKEE FILMMAKER IN RESIDENCE:
Michael T. Vollman, Before You
• Chris James Thompson (2012)
• Michael Hawkins-Burgos (2011)
• Tate Bunker (2010)
• John Roberts (2009)
CREAM CITY CINEMA SPECIAL JURY PRIZE
Habibeh (Thicker Than Paint) (dir. Maryam Sepehri)
CREAM CITY CINEMA SPECIAL JURY PRIZE (ACTING)
Logan Lark, When the King Tilts
PAST SPECIAL JURY PRIZE WINNERS
• Feature Film, 2012 - As Goes Janesville (dir. Brad Lichtenstein)
• Short Film, 2012 - So I Could Fly Away (dir. Blyth Renate Meier)
New Awards for our 2014 festival!
SHORTER IS BETTER AWARD
The films in our Shorter Is Better category (p. 54) give viewers small curated glimpses into stories told from all walks of life, by filmmakers from all over the world. Innovative and enthralling, expansive in subject matter and style, these films are, above all: short. We are pleased to present the first annual Shorter Is Better juried award, recognizing the selected short film with a cash prize of $1,000.
KIDS CHOICE SHORT FILM AWARD
This year, Milwaukee Film is excited to introduce our first-ever award chosen by youth. A jury of young people (ages 9-12) from the greater Milwaukee area will select their collective favorite short film from all of the films screened in our three Rated K: For Kids shorts programs (p. 42). If you know a young person who might be interested in serving on this jury in 2015, email email@example.com.