Arts & Entertainment

Montclair Film Festival Competition Awards Recipients Announced

Credits: Getty Images for Montclair Film
Credits: Getty Images
Credits: Getty Images
Credits: Getty Images

MONTCLAIR, NJ - As the ten-day 2015 Montclair Film Festival (MFF) came to a close, an awards ceremony was held at Montclair Kimberley Academy Upper School.

Lucie Borleteau’s Fidelio: Alice's Odyssey took home the Narrative Feature Jury prize. The narrative competition jury also awarded a special jury prize to Yury Bykov’s The Fool for storytelling.

The festival also inaugurated two awards in honor of the late David Carr and Bruce Sinofsky, both Montclair residents. 

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The Russian Woodpecker, directed by Chad Gracia, took home the Bruce Sinofsky Prize in the festival’s Documentary Feature competition.  This award was established in memory of Bruce Sinofsky and was presented by Sinofsky’s long time friend and collaborator Joe Berlinger (Paradise Lost I, II, AND III).

Brad Barber and Scott Christopherson’s Peace Officer took home the David Carr Award for Truth in Non-Fiction Filmmaking, which honors a filmmaker, selected by the festival, who utilizes journalistic techniques to explore important contemporary subjects. The award was presented by Ta-Nehisi Coates, a longtime friend and colleague of Carr.

Elise DuRant’s Eden was awarded with the Future/Now prize, honoring emerging low-budget American independent filmmaking, and Marah Strauch’s Sunshine Superman took home the New Jersey Films Award, which honors a selected group of films made by New Jersey artists.  The junior jury prize went to Alexandra Shiva’s documentary How to Dance in Ohio.

“We’re thrilled to be launching these awards for our fourth installment, and to honor the diverse group of talented filmmakers,” said MFF founder and Chairman Bob Feinberg. “This has been a significant year for us and it truly exemplifies the festival’s impact and growth, as we continue to lay the groundwork for many more successful years ahead.”

The MFF featured John Battsek, Stephen Colbert, Dane DeHaan, Jonathan Demme, Richard Gere, Sam Green, Barbara Kopple, Mavis Staples, Michael Showalter, Patrick Wilson and Alex Winter.

“This year’s festival featured over 135 films and we are incredibly proud of each and every one of our filmmakers. These inaugural awards represent the best of what our festival can offer – global stories that have an intimate, connection to our audiences and help Montclair connect to the world of cinema,”said MFF Executive Director Tom Hall.

The following is a list of 2015 winners of The Montclair Film Festival Awards:

David Carr Award for Truth in Non-Fiction Filmmaking Winner


Directors – Brad Barber and Scott Christopherson


Narrative Feature Competition Winner


Director – Lucie Borleteau


Narrative Feature Competition

Special Jury Prize for Storytelling


Director – Yury Bykov


Bruce Sinofsky Prize for Documentary Feature Competition Winner


Director – Chad Gracia


Future/Now Winner


Director – Elise DuRant


New Jersey Films Competition Winner


Director – Marah Strauch


Junior Jury Winner


Director – Alexandra Shiva


Narrative Feature Competition

Thelma Adams – Writer and leading New York based film critic for Yahoo! Movies

Eric Hynes – Film critic and reporter for the New York Times, Rolling Stone, Slate

Stephen Whitty – Film Critic, writer for the Star Ledger


Documentary Feature Competition

Logan Hill – Freelance writer for the New York Times, Rolling Stone, Glamour

Joe Neumaier – Chief Film Critic and film editor at the New York Daily News

Jordan Zakarin – Entertainment journalist for Yahoo Movies



Jeremy Boxer – Creative Director, Film & Video at Vimeo

Eric Kohn – Deputy Editor and chief film critic for IndieWIRE

Dan Schoenbrun – Film Outreach Lead at Kickstarter


New Jersey Films Competition

Georgette Gilmore – Freelance writer and editor for Baristanet

Christina Kotlar – Screenwriter, digital media content designer, and founder of Film Festival Reviews

Lacey Schwartz – CEO of production company Truth Aid


For information about MFF, visit

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