This year was unprecedented with many variables in play, including a global pandemic, that we had no idea the impact that it would have on our film submissions.

As festivals were canceling across the country or headed to a virtual platform, one thing the we knew was that whatever CIFF chose to do, we would to move forward with our Jury Awards. Honoring the work of independent films/filmmakers is the heart & soul of our festival.

We were blown away by the quality and diversity of the films we received. The choices were made tougher by the uniqueness of each film eligible in their respective award categories. Our Jury members had some difficult decisions to make.

It is with great pride that we announce the winners of the 2020 Jury Awards:

The Leonard Maltin Tribute Award - “Nomadland” director Chloé Zhao

Jury Awards, Top Honors - Best Narrative Feature, “Two Way Home,”; Best Documentary Feature, “The Prison Within”; Special Recognition Documentary Freature, “Fish & Men”; Best Short, “Alina”

Dr. George M. Sanger Student Film Awards - Grand Prize, “My War”

Jury Cash Award recipients - “Estranged,” “Anna & Sloane Go to the Beach,” “Dia de las Carpas,” with Special Recognition - “The Humanity Test”

The Dale St. Denis Female Filmmaker Awards - Mary Pickford Award, “Two Ways Home,”; Fearless Female Filmmaker, “Double Exposure,”; Frances Marion Award, “Alina”

Emerald Award - “Kiss the Ground”

The Jury Awards have been graciously underwritten by the following benefactors: The Emerald Awards, sponsored by Ken Fitzgerald and Ruby Carr; the Dr. George M. Sanger Student Film Award(s), sponsored by Wendy McGuire and Dev Purkayastha; and the Dale St. Denis Femail Filmmaker Awards by Doug St. Denis.

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