Sundance: Desiree Akhavan’s “The Miseducation of Cameron Post” Wins 2018 Sundance Grand Jury Prize


MiseducationCameronPostSundanceSundance Film Festival

On Saturday night, the remainder of the awards for the 2018 Sundance Film Festival were handed out at a special celebration with love being spread out among eight film as the four Grand Jury awarded prizes to four different films than the ones picked by Sundance audiences.

Desiree Akhavan’s The Miseducation of Cameron Post, starring Chloe Grace Moretz and Sasha Lane, won t he coveted Grand Jury prize in the U.S. Dramatic competition section, while Andrew Heckler’s Burden starring Garett Hedlund and Forrest Whitaker won the audience prize in the same category.

The Miseducation of Cameron Post stars Moretz as the title character, a teenager who is sent to a Christian reprogramming camp to prevent her urges for same sex attraction to her best friend. Burden stars Hedlund as a Klansman who falls in love with a single mom who forces him to face his senseless racist hatred.

Neither film has found distribution as of yet, although a book based on the story in Burden was picked up by Penguin Random House division Convergent.

The Turkish film Butterflies from writer/director Tolga Karaçelik won the Grand Jury prize in the World Dramatic section with the Audience award going to the Danish thriller The Guilty from Gustav Möller. The latter was picked up by Magnolia Pictures out of the fest.

The NEXT Innovator prize was a tie between Jordana Spiro’s Night Comes On and Jeremiah Zagar’s We the Animals.

Aneesh Chaganty’s Search  won the Audience Award in the NEXT category mere days after receiving a $20,000 cash award from Sundance Institute with support from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation for “outstanding feature film about science or technology.” Search producer Sev Ohanian also received the Amazon Studios Producer award for “bold vision and a commitment to continuing work as a creative producer in the independent space.:

Kailash and The Sentence won the Grand Jury prizes for documentary in the U.S. and World categories, respectively.

All four of this year’s Directing awards were given to women, as was the Waldo Salt Screenwriting award which went to NANCY writer Christina Choe.

You can read the full list of Sundance Film Festival awards below, including the short film awards, which were handed out earlier in the week on Jan. 23.


The U.S. Grand Jury Prize: Documentary
Kailash (U.S.A.)
Director: Derek Doneen, Producers: Davis Guggenheim, Sarah Anthony

The U.S. Grand Jury Prize: Dramatic
The Miseducation of Cameron Post (U.S.A.)
Director: Desiree Akhavan, Screenwriters: Desiree Akhavan, Cecilia Frugiuele, Producers: Cecilia Frugiuele, Jonathan Montepare, Michael B. Clark, Alex Turtletaub
Cast: Chloë Grace Moretz, Sasha Lane, Forrest Goodluck, John Gallagher Jr., Jennifer Ehle.

The World Cinema Grand Jury Prize: Documentary
Of Fathers and Sons (Germany, Syria, Lebanon, Qatar)
Director: Talal Derki, Producers: Ansgar Frerich, Eva Kemme, Tobias N. Siebert, Hans Robert Eisenhauer

The World Cinema Grand Jury Prize: Dramatic
Butterflies (Turkey)
Director and screenwriter: Tolga Karaçelik, Producers: Tolga Karaçelik, Diloy Gülün, Metin Anter

The Audience Award: U.S. Documentary
The Sentence (U.S.A.)
Director: Rudy Valdez, Producers: Sam Bisbee, Jackie Kelman Bisbee

The Audience Award: U.S. Dramatic
Burden (U.S.A.)
Director and screenwriter: Andrew Heckler, Producers: Robbie Brenner, Jincheng, Bill Kenwright
Cast: Garrett Hedlund, Forest Whitaker, Andrea Riseborough, Tom Wilkinson, Usher Raymond.

The Audience Award: World Cinema Documentary
This Is Home (U.S.A./ Jordan)
Director: Alexandra Shiva, Producers: Lindsey Megrue, Alexandra Shiva

The Audience Award: World Cinema Dramatic
The Guilty (Denmark)
Director: Gustav Möller, Screenwriters: Gustav Möller, Emil Nygaard Albertsen, Producer: Lina Flint
Cast: Jakob Cedergren, Jessica Dinnage, Johan Olsen, Omar Shargawi.

The Audience Award: NEXT
Search (U.S.A.)
Director: Aneesh Chaganty, Screenwriters: Aneesh Chaganty, Sev Ohanian, Producers: Timur Bekmambetov, Sev Ohanian, Adam Sidman, Natalie Qasabian
Cast: John Cho, Debra Messing.

The Directing Award: U.S. Documentary:
Alexandria Bombach – On Her Shoulders
Director: Alexandria Bombach, Producers: Hayley Pappas, Brock Williams

The Directing Award: U.S. Dramatic:
Sara Colangelo – The Kindergarten Teacher (U.S.A.)
Director and screenwriter: Sara Colangelo, Producers: Talia Kleinhendler, Osnat Handelsman-Keren, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Celine Rattray, Trudie Styler
Cast: Maggie Gyllenhaal, Parker Sevak, Rosa Salazar, Anna Barynishikov, Michael Chernus, Gael Garcia Bernal.

The Directing Award: World Cinema Documentary:
Sandi Tan – Shirkers (U.S.A.)
Director and screenwriter: Sandi Tan, Producers: Sandi Tan, Jessica Levin, Maya Rudolph

The Directing Award: World Cinema Dramatic:
Ísold Uggadótti – Breathe Normally (Iceland, Sweden, Belgium)
Director and screenwriter: Ísold Uggadóttir, Producers: Skúli Malmquist, Diana Elbaum, Annika Hellström, Lilja Ósk Snorradóttir, Inga Lind Karlsdóttir
Cast: Kristín Thóra Haraldsdóttir, Babetida Sadjo, Patrik Nökkvi Pétursson.

The Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award: U.S. Dramatic
Christina Choe – NANCY (U.S.A)
Director and screenwriter: Christina Choe, Producers: Amy Lo, Michelle Cameron, Andrea Riseborough
Cast: Andrea Riseborough, J. Smith-Cameron, Steve Buscemi, Ann Dowd, John Leguizamo.

A U.S. Documentary Special Jury Award for Creative Vision
Hale County This Morning, This Evening (U.S.A.)
Director: RaMell Ross, Screenwriter: Maya Krinsky, Producers: Joslyn Barnes, RaMell Ross, Su Kim

A U.S. Documentary Special Jury Award for Social Impact
Crime + Punishment (U.S.A.)
Director: Stephen Maing

A U.S. Documentary Special Jury Award for Storytelling
Three Identical Strangers (U.S.A.)
Director: Tim Wardle, Producer: Becky Read

A U.S. Documentary Special Jury Award for Breakthrough Filmmaking
Minding the Gap (U.S.A.)
Director: Bing Liu, Producer: Diane Quon

A U.S. Dramatic Special Jury Award for Outstanding First Feature
Monsters and Men (U.S.A.)
Director and screenwriter: Reinaldo Marcus Green, Producers: Elizabeth Lodge Stepp, Josh Penn, Eddie Vaisman, Julia Lebedev, Luca Borghese
Cast: John David Washington, Anthony Ramos, Kelvin Harrison Jr., Chanté Adams, Nicole Beharie, Rob Morgan.

A U.S. Dramatic Special Jury Award for Excellence in Filmmaking
I Think We’re Alone Now (U.S.A.)
Director: Reed Morano, Screenwriter: Mike Makowsky, Producers: Fred Berger, Brian Kavanaugh-Jones, Fernando Loureiro, Roberto Vasconcellos, Peter Dinklage, Mike Makowsky
Cast: Peter Dinklage, Elle Fanning.

A U.S. Dramatic Special Jury Award for Achievement in Acting
Benjamin Dickey –  BLAZE (U.S.A.)
Director: Ethan Hawke, Screenwriters: Ethan Hawke, Sybil Rosen, Producers: Jake Seal, John Sloss, Ryan Hawke, Ethan Hawke)
Cast: Benjamin Dickey, Alia Shawkat, Josh Hamilton, Charlie Sexton.

A World Cinema Documentary Special Jury Award
Stephen Loveridge and M.I.A. – MATANGI / MAYA / M.I.A. (Sri Lanka, United Kingdom, U.S.A.)
Director: Stephen Loveridge, Producers: Lori Cheatle, Andrew Goldman, Paul Mezey

A World Cinema Documentary Special Jury Award for Editing
Maxim Pozdorovkin and Matvey Kulako – Our New President (Russia, U.S.A.)
Director: Maxim Pozdorovkin, Producers: Maxim Pozdorovkin, Joe Bender, Charlotte Cook

A World Cinema Documentary Special Jury Award for Cinematography
Maxim Arbugaev and Peter Indergand – Genesis 2.0  (Switzerland)
Directors: Christian Frei, Maxim Arbugaev, Producer: Christian Frei

A World Cinema Dramatic Special Jury Award for Screenwriting was Julio Chavezmontes and Sebastián Hofmann = Time Share (Tiempo Compartido (Mexico, Netherlands)
Director: Sebastián Hofmann, Screenwriters: Julio Chavezmontes, Sebastián Hofmann, Producer: Julio Chavezmontes

A World Cinema Dramatic Special Jury Award for Acting
Valeria Bertuccelli, for The Queen of Fear (Argentina, Denmark)
Directors: Valeria Bertuccelli, Fabiana Tiscornia, Screenwriter: Valeria Bertuccelli, Producers: Benjamin Domenech, Santiago Gallelli, Matias Roveda, Juan Vera, Juan Pablo Galli, Christian Faillace
Cast: Valeria Bertuccelli, Diego Velázquez, Gabriel Eduardo “Puma” Goity, Darío Grandinetti.

A World Cinema Dramatic Special Jury Award for Ensemble Acting
Dead Pigs (China)
Director and screenwriter: Cathy Yan, Producers: Clarissa Zhang, Jane Zheng, Zhangke Jia, Mick Aniceto, Amy Aniceto
Cast: Vivian Wu, Haoyu Yang, Mason Lee, Meng Li, David Rysdahl.

The NEXT Innovator Prize

Tie between…

Night Comes On (U.S.A.)
Director: Jordana Spiro, Screenwriters: Jordana Spiro, Angelica Nwandu, Producers: Jonathan Montepare, Alvaro R. Valente, Danielle Renfrew Behrens
Cast: Dominique Fishback, Tatum Hall, John Earl Jelks, Max Casella, James McDaniel.

We the Animals (U.S.A.)
Director: Jeremiah Zagar, Screenwriters: Daniel Kitrosser, Jeremiah Zagar, Producers: Jeremy Yaches, Christina D. King, Andrew Goldman, Paul Mezey
Cast: Raul Castillo, Sheila Vand, Evan Rosado, Isaiah Kristian, Josiah Gabriel.


The Short Film Grand Jury Prize
Matria (Spain)
Director and screenwriter: Director and screenwriter: Álvaro Gago

The Short Film Jury Award: U.S. Fiction
Hair Wolf (U.S.A.)
Director and screenwriter: Director and screenwriter: Mariama Diallo

The Short Film Jury Award: International Fiction
Would You Look at Her (Macedonia)
Director and screenwriter: Goran Stolevski

The Short Film Jury Award: Nonfiction

The Trader (Sovdagari) (Georgia)
Director: Tamta Gabrichidze

The Short Film Jury Award: Animation

Director and screenwriter: Jeron Braxton

Also, three Special Jury Awards without designation were presented to Emergency (U.S.A.)
Director: Carey Williams, Screenwriter: K.D. Dávila
Fauve (Canada)
Director and screenwriter: Jérémy Comte

Nonna Anna (Canada)
Director and screenwriter: Luis De Filippis).

The Short Film jurors were Cherien Dabis, Shirley Manson and Chris Ware. The Short Film program is presented by YouTube.

Sundance Institute Open Borders Fellowship

Of Fathers and Sons (Syria) / Talal Derki
Untitled (India) / Chaitanya Tamhane
Night On Fire (Mexico) / Tatiana Huezo

The Sundance Institute / NHK Award
His House (United Kingdom) / Remi Weekes.

2018 Alfred P. Sloan Feature Film Prize (for outstanding feature film about science or technology)
Aneesh Chaganty and Sev Ohanian’s Search

2018 Sundance Institute | Amazon Studios Producers Awards
Sev Ohanian (Search) for bold vision and a commitment to continuing work as a creative producer in the independent space.

  | East Coast Editor

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