TBWA\Media Arts Lab Shanghai wins Best Short for Tribeca X for “The Comeback” at Tribeca
The 21st annual Tribeca Festival, presented by OKX, has today announced the winning storytellers in its competition categories at this year’s awards ceremony at Tribeca eatery Thalassa. Awards were given in the following competition categories: Feature Film, Short Film, Audio Storytelling, Immersive, Games, Human / Nature, AT&T Untold Stories, and Tribeca X. The winners included, TBWA\Media Arts Lab Shanghai’s, “The Comeback” for Apple which won the Best Short for Tribeca X.
The ceremony awarded $165,000 in cash prizes. The Festival, which hosts over 600 events across New York City, concludes on June 19th.
“Today’s honorees are a testament to the vitality of cinematic storytelling, representing the most exciting achievements across countries, genres, and platforms,” said Cara Cusumano, Festival Director and Vice President of Programming. “We are proud to recognize such a diverse and innovative group of works and creators with today’s well-deserved award winners.”
A special Virtual Award Winner Screenings series will be available for U.S. audiences via Tribeca At Home on Saturday, June 18 and Sunday, June 19. Tickets can be purchased at tribecafilm.com/festival/tickets. Competition winners in the Short Films Category, presented by Meta, are available to stream on the Meta Quest 2 virtual-reality headset as well as the Tribeca page on Facebook through Sunday, June 19.
In addition to cash awards and in-kind services provided by sponsors, some award winners received the unique Tribeca Festival Art Award. Supported by CHANEL, the world-class artists donated work to honored filmmakers.
The winners of the Audience Award, which are determined by audience votes throughout the Festival, will be announced next week.
2022 Winners and Special Jury Mentions, as selected by the 2022 Festival Jury, are as follows:
U.S. NARRATIVE COMPETITION
The Founders Award for Best U.S. Narrative Feature: Good Girl Jane, (United States) – World Premiere, presented by OKX. Bullied out of private school and at odds with her divorced parents, lonely high schooler Jane spirals out of control after falling in with a hard-partying crowd and becoming smitten with a dangerously charismatic bad boy. Directed and written by Sarah Elizabeth Mintz. Produced by Fred Bernstein, Dominique Telson, Lauren Pratt, Sarah Elizabeth Mintz, Simone Williams. With Rain Spencer, Patrick Gibson, Andie MacDowell, Odessa A’Zion, Olan Prenatt, Eloisa Huggins. The winner receives $20,000.
Best Screenplay in a U.S. Narrative Feature: Ben Snyder and Elizabeth Rodriguez for Allswell, (United States) – World Premiere. Three Nuyorican sisters navigate the daunting life challenges of single motherhood, career, and family, all while finding humor and solace within the bonds of sisterhood in this absorbing dramedy. Directed and written by Ben Snyder, and written by Elizabeth Rodriguez. Produced by Gia Walsh, Elizabeth Rodriguez, Vince Jolivette, Ben Snyder, Ari Issler, Paul Jarrett, Kara Baker. With Elizabeth Rodriguez, Liza Colon-Zayas, Daphne Rubin-Vega, Felix Solis, Max Cassella, Michael Rispoli, Shirley Rodriguez, MacKenzie Lansing, and J. Cameron Barnett. The winner received $2,500.
Best Cinematography in a U.S. Narrative Feature: Azuli Anderson for Next Exit, (United States) – World Premiere. In a world where ghosts are real and front-page news, a controversial new medical procedure allows people to peacefully kill themselves. In the midst of this breakthrough, two strangers travel cross country together to end their lives, only to unexpectedly find what they’ve been missing along the way. Cinematographer: Azuli Anderson. Directed and written by Mali Elfman. Produced by Derek Bishé, Narineh Hacopian. With Katie Parker, Rahul Kohli, Rose McIver, Karen Gillan, Tongayi Chirisa, Diva Zappa.
Best Performance in a U.S. Narrative Feature: Rain Spencer in Good Girl Jane, (United States) – World Premiere. Bullied out of private school and at odds with her divorced parents, lonely high schooler Jane spirals out of control after falling in with a hard-partying crowd and becoming smitten with a dangerously charismatic bad boy. Directed and written by Sarah Elizabeth Mintz. Produced by Fred Bernstein, Dominique Telson, Lauren Pratt, Sarah Elizabeth Mintz, Simone Williams. With Rain Spencer, Patrick Gibson, Andie MacDowell, Odessa A’Zion, Olan Prenatt, Eloisa Huggins.
Special Jury Mention for Best Performance in a U.S. Narrative Feature: Liz Carbel Sierra in God’s Time, (United States) – World Premiere. A heart-racing, NYC-set dark comedy that sees two best bros in recovery for addiction trying to prevent the potential murder of their mutual crush’s ex-boyfriend. Directed and written by Daniel Antebi. Produced by Emily Korteweg, Andrew Hutcheson, Reid Hannaford. With Ben Groh, Dion Costelloe, Liz Caribel Sierra, Jared Abrahamson, Christiane Seidel.
INTERNATIONAL NARRATIVE COMPETITION
Best International Narrative Feature: January (Janvaris), (Latvia, Lithuania, Poland) – World Premiere. An aspiring filmmaker tries to search for who he is against the backdrop of Latvian independence in this dark but dreamy coming-of-age story. Directed by Viesturs Kairiss. Written by Viesturs Kairiss, Andris Feldmanis, Livia Ulman. Produced by Inese Boka-Grūbe, Gints Grūbe. With Kārlis Arnolds Avots, Alise Danovska, Sandis Runge, Baiba Broka, Aleksas Kazanavičius, Juhan Ulfsak. In Latvian, Lithuanian, Russian, with English subtitles. The winner received $20,000.
Best Screenplay in an International Narrative Feature: Martín Boulocq and Rodrigo Hasbún for The Visitor, (Bolivia, Uruguay) – World Premiere. In the atmospheric and visually-compelling drama The Visitor, an ex-convict returns home in search of a new life and a chance to reconnect with his estranged young daughter, only to be met with resistance from his father-in-law – an influential pastor in the Evangelical community in town. Directed by Martín Boulocq. Written by Martín Boulocq, Rodrigo Hasbún. Produced by Andrea Camponovo, Alvaro Olmos. With Enrique Aráoz, César Troncoso, Mirella Pascual, Svet Ailyn Mena, Romel Vargas, Teresa Gutiérrez. In Spanish with English subtitles. The winner received $2,500.
Best Cinematography in an International Narrative Feature: Jan Mayntz for We Might As Well Be Dead (Wir könnten genauso gut tot sein), (Germany, Romania) – International Premiere. The disappearance of a dog and the sudden isolation of a security guard’s daughter start a bizarre chain of events in an apartment complex obsessed with keeping up appearances. Directed by Natalia Sinelnikova. Cinematographer: Jan Mayntz. Written by Natalia Sinelnikova, Viktor Gallandi. Produced by Julia Wagner. With Ioana Iacob, Pola Geiger, Jörg Schüttauf, Şiir Eloğlu, Moritz Jahn, Susanne Wuest, Knut Berger, Mina Özlem Sağdıç. In German, Polish with English subtitles.
Best Performance in an International Narrative Feature: Dorota Pomykala for Woman on a Roof, (Poland, France, Sweden) – World Premiere. One morning a 60-year-old midwife does something extremely unexpected, which breaks her family and life apart. Inspired by a true story, this is a complex character portrayal told with outstanding cinematic realism. Directed and written by Anna Jadowska. Produced by Maria Blicharska. With Dorota Pomykala, Bogdan Koca, Adam Bobik. In Polish with English subtitles.
Best Documentary Feature: The Cave of Adullam, (United States) – World Premiere. Living by the mantra ‘it’s easier to raise boys than to repair broken men’, martial arts sensei Jason Wilson tenderly guides his often-troubled young Detroit students with a beautifully effective blend of compassion and tough love. Directed by Laura Checkoway. Produced by Laurence Fishburne, Helen Sugland, Jenifer Westphal, Roy Bank, Joe Plummer, Laura Checkoway. With Jason Wilson, Kevin L. Collins Jr., Gabriel Davenport, Daniel White, Tamarkus Williams. The winner receives $20,000.
Best Cinematography in a Documentary Feature: Boris Levy for The Wild One, (France) – World Premiere. Jack Garfein — Holocaust survivor, theater and film director, key figure in the formation of the Actors Studio — vividly, animatedly, passionately recalls a life where historical tragedy and personal art formed a unique, driving, uncompromising vision. Cinematographer: Boris Levy. Directed, written, and produced by Tessa Louise-Salomé. With Jack Garfein, Willem Dafoe, Peter Bogdanovich, Irène Jacob, Boby Sotto, Dick Guttman, Blanche Baker, Patricia Bosworth, Foster Hirsch, Geoffrey Horne, Kate Rennebohm. The winner receives $2,500.
Best Editing in a Documentary Feature: Christopher McGlynn for The Cave of Adullam, (United States) – World Premiere. Living by the mantra ‘it’s easier to raise boys than to repair broken men’, martial arts sensei Jason Wilson tenderly guides his often-troubled young Detroit students with a beautifully effective blend of compassion and tough love. Editor: Christopher McGlynn. Directed by Laura Checkoway. Produced by Laurence Fishburne, Helen Sugland, Jenifer Westphal, Roy Bank, Joe Plummer, Laura Checkoway. With Jason Wilson, Kevin L. Collins Jr., Gabriel Davenport, Daniel White, Tamarkus Williams. The winner receives $2,500.
BEST NEW NARRATIVE DIRECTOR COMPETITION
Best New Narrative Director: Michelle Garza Cervera for Huesera, (Mexico) – Feature Narrative, World Premiere. Valeria has long dreamed about becoming a mother. After learning that she’s pregnant, she expects to feel happy, yet something’s off. Nightmarish visions and an unshakeable paranoia have her questioning what she wants, and an ancient evil spirit may be the cause. Directed by Michelle Garza Cervera. Written by Michelle Garza Cervera, Abia Castillo. Produced by Paulina Villavicencio, Edher Campos. With Natalia Solián, Alfonso Dosal, Mayra Batalla, Mercedes Hernández, Aída López, Martha Claudia Moreno. In Spanish with English subtitles. An XYZ release. The winner receives $10,000.
Special Jury Mention for Best New Narrative Director: Floor van der Meulen for Pink Moon, (Italy, Netherlands, Slovenia) – World Premiere. An adult daughter kidnaps her father, whisking him away to a cabin in the snow, hoping to alter his unexpected announcement that he has had enough of life and will end it by his next birthday. Directed by Floor van der Meulen. Written by Bastiaan Kroeger. Produced by Derk-Jan Warrink and Koji Nelissen. With Julia Akkermans, Johan Leysen, Eelco Smits, Anniek Pheifer, Sinem Kavus.
BEST NEW DOCUMENTARY DIRECTOR COMPETITION
The Albert Maysles Award for Best New Documentary Director: Edward Buckles Jr. for Katrina Babies, (United States) – World Premiere. Katrina Babies is a first-person account of the short-term and long-term devastation wrought by Hurricane Katrina, as told by young people who were between the ages of 3 and 19 when the levees broke. Directed by Edward Buckles Jr.. Written by Edward Buckles Jr., Luther Clement Lam, Audrey Rosenberg. Produced by Edward Buckles Jr., Audrey Rosenberg, Rebecca Teitel. With Miesha Williams, Cierra Chenier, Arnold Burks, Damaris Calliet, Calvin Baxter, Quintina Thomas Green. An HBO Documentary Films release. The winner receives $10,000.
NORA EPHRON COMPETITION
Nora Ephron Award: Michelle Garza Cervera for Huesera, (Mexico) – Feature Narrative, World Premiere. Valeria has long dreamed about becoming a mother. After learning that she’s pregnant, she expects to feel happy, yet something’s off. Nightmarish visions and an unshakeable paranoia have her questioning what she wants, and an ancient evil spirit may be the cause. Directed by Michelle Garza Cervera. Written by Michelle Garza Cervera, Abia Castillo. Produced by Paulina Villavicencio, Edher Campos. With Natalia Solián, Alfonso Dosal, Mayra Batalla, Mercedes Hernández, Aída López, Martha Claudia Moreno. In Spanish with English subtitles. An XYZ release. The winner receives $20,000.
Best Narrative Short: Night Ride (Nattrikken), (Norway) – New York Premiere, Short Narrative. It is a cold night in December. As Ebba waits for the tram, an unexpected turn of events transforms the ride home into something she was not expecting. Directed and written by Eirik Tveiten. Produced by Gaute Lid Larssen, Heidi Arnesen. With Sigrid Husjord, Ola Hoemsnes Sandum, Axel Barø Aasen. In Norwegian with English subtitles. The winner receives $5,000.
Best Documentary Short: Heart Valley, (UK, Wales) – World Premiere, Short Documentary. Heart Valley follows a day in the life of solitary Welsh shepherd Wilf Davies. Directed by Christian Cargill. Written by Kiran Sidhu. Produced by Christian Cargill, Lily Wakeley, Kiran Sidhu. With Evan Wilf Davies.
Special Jury Mention for Best Documentary Short: Stranger at the Gate, (United States) – New York Premiere, Short Documentary. A U.S. Marine plots a terrorist attack on a small-town American mosque. His plan takes an unexpected turn when he comes face-to-face with the people he sets out to kill. Directed by Joshua Seftel. Produced by Mohannad Malas, Suzanne Hillinger, Conall Jones, Jeremy Mack, Anna Rowe, Eric Nichols. With Bibi Bahrami, Dr. Saber Bahrami, Dana McKinney, Emily McKinney, Richard “Mac” McKinney, Jomo Williams.
Best Animated Short: More Than I Remember, (United States) – New York Premiere, Short Animation. Fourteen-year-old Mugeni awakes to the sounds of bombs. As her family scatters to the surrounding forests to save themselves, Mugeni finds herself completely alone. Directed by Amy Bench. Written by Mugeni Ornella, Amy Bench, Carolyn Merriman. Lead animator: Sebastian Bisbal. Produced by Amy Bench, Carolyn Merriman. With Mugeni Ornella. The winner receives $5,000.
Student Visionary: Daydreamers, (Belgium) – North American Premiere, Short Narrative. A father and his daughter are very passionate about motorcycles. An eye condition jeopardizes their shared hobby. Directed by Ante Pask. Written by Ante Pask, Emiel van Wouwe. Produced by Ella Bal, Ante Pask.With Jurgen Delnaet, Flo Martens, Robby Cleiren. In Dutch with English subtitles. The winner receives $5,000.
TRIBECA AUDIO STORYTELLING COMPETITION
Best Audio Storytelling in Nonfiction: Mother Country Radicals. In 1970, Bernardine Dohrn declared war on the United States. Now, her son Zayd tells the story of how she was radicalized, and became the most wanted woman in America. Created by Zayd Ayers Dohrn, executive produced by Zayd Ayers Dohrn, Jon Favreau, Sarah Geismer, Lyra Smith, Alison Falzetta, Misha Euceph, with sound design by Arwen Nicks, Stephanie Cohn, Ariana Gharib Lee, and Misha Euceph, and music by Andy Clausen.
Special Jury Mention Best Audio Storytelling in Nonfiction: I Was Never There. Take a trip into the countercultural movements swirling through West Virginia in the 1970s and 80s. Jamie Zelermyer and her mother Karen investigate the shocking disappearance of their friend Marsha “Mudd” Ferber and explore her evolution from suburban housewife to back-to-the-land hippie to drug-dealing bar owner. As mother and daughter venture deeper into the mystery of Marsha’s disappearance, the two process their own history: Jamie reflects on her nontraditional upbringing and Karen reckons with the joyful and complicated consequences of her decisions. Created by Jamie and Karen Zelermeyer, produced by Adesuwa Agbonile, Lindsey Kratochwill, Liz Smith, Alessandra Wollner, edited by Jenny Kaplan and Liz Smith. Executive produced by Jamie Zelermyer, Jenny Kaplan (Wonder Media Network), and Karen Zelermyer, with sound design by Liz Smith.
Best Audio Storytelling in Fiction: The Hollowed Out. When a journalist returns to her hometown to investigate a suspicious accident involving a friend, she finds fractured relationships and mysterious rumors about what’s really going on in her town. Created, written, edited, and produced by Brit and Nick Kewin. Starring Stephanie Costa, Carolyn Taylor, Moynan King, Madison Cheeatow, Shomari Downer, Rodrigo Fernandez-Stoll, with sound design by Justin Helle.
TRIBECA IMMERSIVE COMPETITION
Storyscapes Award: Kubo Walks The City, (France, South Korea) – North American Premiere. Seoul, 1934. Korea is under Japanese occupation. Like “ethno-detectives,” viewers follow in the footsteps of Kubo, a Korean writer, in his urban flânerie. Through caricatures that mock the shortcomings of a Korean society emerging from the poverty and archaisms of the past, explore a city recklessly discovering the modernity and prosperity that come with occupation. Directed by Hayoun Kwon and produced by Innerspace VR. The winner receives $10,000.
Special Jury Mention for Storyscapes Award: EVOLVER, (United Kingdom, France, United States) – World Premiere. EVOLVER from Marshmallow Laser Feast is a collective virtual reality experience which drops audiences deep inside the landscape of the body, following the flow of oxygen through our branching ecosystem, to a single ‘breathing’ cell. Through this transcendental narrative, it becomes clear that breath not only sparks life, but also connects us to the natural world through the cycle of respiration. Project Creators: Marshmallow Laser Feast, Jonny Greenwood, Meredith Monk, Jóhann Jóhannsson, Howard Skempton. Producers: Nicole Shanahan (Bia-Echo), Edward R. Pressman, and & Sam Pressman (Pressman Film), Terrence Malick (TF Malick Productions), Antoine Cayrol (Atlas V), and Mike Jones (Marshmallow Laser Feast).
New Voices Award: LGBTQ + VR Museum, (United Kingdom, Denmark) – North American Premiere. LGBTQ + VR Museum is the world’s first virtual reality museum dedicated to celebrating the stories and artwork of LGBTQ people by preserving queer personal histories. The museum contains 3D scans of touching personal artifacts, from wedding shoes to a teddy bear, chosen by people in the LGBTQ community and accompanied by their stories told in their own words. The in-person version presented at Tribeca is a never-before-seen multiplayer biometric experience controlled by users’ emotions in real-time. Project Creators: Antonia Forster and Thomas Terkildsen. Producer: Albert Millis.
TRIBECA GAMES COMPETITION
Tribeca Games Award: Thirsty Suitors, (United States) – World Premiere. Jala is a young woman returning home for her sister’s wedding and confronting her past. With wildly varied gameplay, Jala will fight skate punks, random suitors, and ultimately, her exes, in the ultimate battle to heal old hurts and ignite new truths, bringing Jala closer to understanding what she wants from her future. Can she learn to love herself and heal the wounds of her past? Created by Outerloop Games. Published by Annapurna Interactive
Special Jury Mention for Tribeca Games Award: Oxenfree II: Lost Signals (United States) – World Premiere. OXENFREE II: Lost Signals is the mind-bending follow-up to the critically-acclaimed narrative adventure game OXENFREE from Night School Studio. In the small coastal town of Camena, unnaturally occurring electromagnetic waves are causing interference with electrical and radio equipment. Reluctantly, Riley Poverly returns to her hometown to investigate the mystery. What she finds is more than she bargained for. Created by Night School Studios. Published by Netflix.
HUMAN/NATURE Prize: Katrina Babies, (United States) – World Premiere, presented by Bulleit. Katrina Babies is a first-person account of the short-term and long-term devastation wrought by Hurricane Katrina, as told by young people who were between the ages of 3 and 19 when the levees broke. Directed by Edward Buckles Jr.. Written by Edward Buckles Jr., Luther Clement Lam, Audrey Rosenberg. Produced by Edward Buckles Jr., Audrey Rosenberg, Rebecca Teitel. With Miesha Williams, Cierra Chenier, Arnold Burks, Damaris Calliet, Calvin Baxter, Quintina Thomas Green. An HBO Documentary Films release. The winner receives $5,000 and a custom engraved bottle of Bulleit Bourbon.
AT&T PRESENTS UNTOLD STORIES COMPETITION
AT&T Presents Untold Stories: Smoking Tigers, (United states). Over one summer spent at an elite academic bootcamp, a lonely Korean American teenager hides her true identity to fit in, only to discover the bittersweet pains of adulthood. Directed and Written by So Young Shelly Yo. Produced by Guo Guo. Untold Stories is a multi-year, multi-tier alliance between AT&T and the Tribeca Festival that awards $1 million dollars, mentorship, and distribution support to systemically underrepresented filmmakers to produce their films. Smoking Tigers will also be guaranteed a premiere at the 2023 Tribeca Festival, subject to timely delivery of the film and granted a dedicated “first look” opportunity with HBO Max.
TRIBECA X AWARD COMPETITION
Best Feature for Tribeca X: The Beauty of Blackness. Brand: Sephora. Agency: Epic Digital, VOX Creative, Digitas, Ventureland. Directors: Kianna Moore and Tiffany Johnson. In 1973, Eunice Johnson, the founder of Ebony and Jet, noticed a problem: Black women had to mix their own foundation in order to find a color that matched their skin. To tackle the problem, Johnson launched Fashion Fair, the first national cosmetics company that focused entirely on Black women. The brand triggered a renaissance in style among Black women and the global cosmetics industry took notice. Now, Fashion Fair is staging its comeback as a Black-owned business in a new era defined by massive cultural shifts and increased competition. The Beauty of Blackness follows current Fashion Fair CEO Desiree Rogers and President Cheryl Mayberry McKissack as they face the massive undertaking that goes into reviving an iconic beauty brand amidst a new cultural context and gives a front-row look to how the industry has changed, and how much progress we still have to make.
Best Short for Tribeca X: The Comeback. Brand: Apple. Agency: TBWA\Media Arts Lab Shanghai. Director: Zhang Meng. The story follows a disheartened young stunt double-slash-wannabe director, his father, and a rag-tag crew of villagers as they set out to shoot an out-of-this-world movie in hopes of reviving their fading village and making it “internet famous”. This 23-minute heartwarming story is set to encourage everyone to never stop believing in their dreams, even if that dream is as far aways as Mars. Will they succeed in the end? A multi-genre movie mixes up Hollywood sci-fi, traditional Kung Fu action and nostalgic feel-good comedy, entirely shot on iPhone.
Best Series for Tribeca X: Stories About Helpful People. Brand: Zendesk. Creative Studio: Even/Odd. Directors: Sindha Agha, Erin Brethauer, and Tim Hussin. As a customer support company, everything Zendesk does — from how they build their customer experience software to the way they work with customers, is all about being helpful. It’s the spirit they believe in. “Stories About Helpful People” is a series of mini-documentaries and photo stories. It’s a series intended to inspire the Zendesk community to rally around the spirit of helpfulness. In GOLDEN AGE KARATE, a high school student helps a group of senior citizens get through a vulnerable time, by teaching them karate. In ERIC AND THE BEES, a U.S. military veteran discovers that beekeeping helps him cope with PTSD — and teaches other vets the healing powers of the hive.
Best Immersive for Tribeca X: Emerging Radiance: Honoring the Nikkei Farmers of Bellevue. Brand: Meta. Creators: Tani Ikeda and Michelle Kumata. Emerging Radiance, directed by Tani Ikeda and illustrated by Michelle Kumata, celebrates the untold stories of Japanese American strawberry farmers who lived in Bellevue from 1920 to 1942. With a hand-painted mural and Spark AR Instagram filters, visitors have the opportunity to meet Toshio Ito, Rae Matsuoka Takekawa, and Mitsuko Hashiguchi, three survivors of the World War II incarceration camps, as they share in their own words their connections to the land before World War II, during incarceration, and post-World War II. Produced by Meta Open Arts.
About the Tribeca Festival: The Tribeca Festival, presented by OKX, brings artists and diverse audiences together to celebrate storytelling in all its forms, including film, TV, VR, games, music, and online work. With strong roots in independent film, Tribeca is a platform for creative expression and immersive entertainment. Tribeca champions emerging and established voices; discovers award-winning filmmakers and creators; curates innovative experiences; and introduces new technology and ideas through premieres, exhibitions, talks, and live performances.
The Festival was founded by Robert De Niro, Jane Rosenthal, and Craig Hatkoff in 2001 to spur the economic and cultural revitalization of lower Manhattan following the attacks on the World Trade Center. Tribeca will celebrate its 21st year from June 8–19, 2022.
In 2019, James Murdoch’s Lupa Systems, a private investment company with locations in New York and Mumbai, bought a majority stake in Tribeca Enterprises, bringing together Rosenthal, De Niro, and Murdoch to grow the enterprise.