Urbanworld Film Festival 2020 Braved a New (Virtual) World, Winners Announced

The Killing of Kenneth Chamberlain (2019)
The Killing of Kenneth Chamberlain (2019)
Photo: Revelations Entertainment

Another year, another Urbanworld Film Festival wrapped! This year marked the 24th Annual Urbanworld Film Festival and this year’s theme was, “A Brave New (Virtual) World.”

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This year’s Urbanworld festival ambassador was show creator and director Justin Simien (Dear White People, Bad Hair), and this five-day virtual event featured other major names such as Stacey Abrams, Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley, Ava DuVernay, David Oyelewo, Rosario Dawson, Lena Waithe, Luis A. Miranda, Jr., Nia DaCosta, Teyonah Parris, Kingsley Ben-Adir, Kelly Rowland, Robert Townsend, Alice Smith, Radha Blank, David E. Talbert, Jahi Di’Allo Winston, Will Catlett, DeRay McKesson, Chino Braxton, Pearl Thusi, Amy Schumer, Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Chief Operating Officer Christine Simmons and MGM’s Orion Pictures President Alana Mayo.

Notable films screened at the fest include David Oyelowo’s feature directorial debut, The Water Man, which was the big opener. All-In: The Fight for Democracy also screened for virtual audiences. The fest also screened films that premiered at other fests such as Charm City Kings, Bad Hair and The Forty-Year-Old Version.

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Now, as with any competitive film festival, we have some winners!

The winners of the 24th Annual Urbanworld Film Festival are:

BEST NARRATIVE FEATURE (U.S. CINEMA) – The Killing of Kenneth Chamberlain


– Directed by David Midell

THE JURY:
David Wolkis, SVP & Head, Production, TBS, TNT & TruTV
Mark R. Wright, Director, Development, MACRO
Mercedes Cooper, Director, Programming, ARRAY
Tamir Muhammad, Founder, Populace

BEST NARRATIVE FEATURE (WORLD CINEMA) – Salvation 


–Directed by Carmen Sangion
Honorable Mention - Hoy - Directed by Ricardo B’atz’

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THE JURY:
Amy Andrieux, Executive Director, MoCADA
Jeniffer Kim, SVP, International Originals, HBO Max
Stacy Spikes, Founder, Urbanworld and Founder, PreShow
Ted Hope, Producer

BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE – The Donut King – Directed by Alice Gu

BEST DOCUMENTARY SHORT - My Father The Mover - Directed by Julia Jansch

THE JURY:
Erika Alexander, Co-Founder & Chief Creative Officer, Color Farm Media
Jackie Glover, Head, News & Documentary, ABC
Lizzie Fox, SVP, Non-Fiction Programming, HBO Max
Sara Rodriguez, SVP, Documentary Programming, HBO

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BEST YOUNG CREATOR – Nahjum – Directed by Sebastian Torres Greene & Manuel Del Valle

THE JURY:
Eugene Ashe, Writer/Director, Amazon Studios’ Sylvie’s Love
Kesila Childers, VP, Development, Powderkeg
Linda Lowy, EVP, Casting, HBO Max, TBS, TNT & TruTV
Sidra Smith, Head, Essence Studios

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BEST NARRATIVE SHORT – White Eye – Directed by Tomer Shushan
Presented by WarnerMedia—$5,000 Prize
Honorable Mention – Elephant – Directed by Gladys San Juan

THE JURY:
Axel Caballero, Head, WarnerMedia’s 150
Brenda Gilbert, Co-Founder & President, BRON Media Corporation
Marta Fernandez, President, MACRO Television Studios

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BEST ANIMATION SHORT – Windup – Directed by Yibing Jiang

THE JURY:
Billy Wee, SVP, Animation Originals, HBO Max
Jeremiah Loeb, Creative Executive, Sony Animation
Taylor K. Shaw, CEO, BWA Studios

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BEST WEB ORIGINAL – East of LaBrea – Directed by Sam Bailey

THE JURY:
D’Angela Proctor, CEO, Wayfarer Entertainment
Greta Talia Fuentes, Director, Development, MACRO
Kevin Parker, Talent Manager, Artists First
Maurice “Mo” Marable, Director & Executive Producer, Hulu’s Woke
Sam Linsky, SVP & Co-Head, Scripted Original Programming, TNT, TBS & TruTV

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BEST MUSIC VIDEO – Rapsody Feat. Leikeli 47 “Oprah” – Directed by Farah X

THE JURY:
Juliette Jones, EVP, Urban Promotions, Atlantic Records
Trenton Pratt, Music Programmer, BET Networks
Xiaolong Liu, Cinematographer

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BEST SCREENPLAY – If You Seek Britney – Written by Ama Quao
Presented by BET Networks—$5,000 Prize

THE JURY:
Connie Orlando, EVP & Head, Specials, Music Programming & Music Strategy, BET
Joshua Sanchez, Writer/Director and WGAE Member
Tracey Moore, Host, iHeartRadio’s The Spirited Actor Podcast and Celebrity Acting Coach

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VIMEO STAFF PICK – Eagle – Directed by Jose Acevedo
Presented by Vimeo—$2,500 Prize and inclusion on Vimeo Staff Pick list

THE JURY:
Ian Durkin, Lead Curator, Vimeo
Ina Pira, Curator, Vimeo
Jeffrey Bowers, Senior Curator, Vimeo

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If you missed the Spotlight Conversations (which includes Robert Townsend interviewing The Forty-Year-Old Version director Radha Blank, Urbanworld Founder, Stacy Spikes in conversation with David Oyelowo and Keira Chansa and more) and would like to view them, you’re in luck! They’re all currently available on Urbanworld’s Vimeo page.

Staff Writer, Entertainment at The Root. Sugar, spice & everything rice. Equipped with the uncanny ability to make a Disney reference and a double entendre in the same sentence.

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