Tribeca Film Festival announces winners of 2020 Jury Awards

Tribeca_Socks on Fire_1_1080p
Bo McGuire in “Socks on Fire,” which won the Tribeca Film Festival Jury Award for Best Documentary. (Photo: Matt Clegg)

The Tribeca Film Festival announced the winners of the 2020 juried competition, awarding top honors from this year’s program. The awards were announced on April 29 via Instagram.

“We are fortunate that technology allowed for our jury to come together this year to honor our filmmakers,” said Tribeca Film Festival Co-Founder and CEO Jane Rosenthal. “Despite not being able to be together physically, we were still able to support our artists, which has always been at the heart of the Festival.”                                                                                    

Among this year’s winners include The Half of It, which was honored with The Founders Award for Best U.S. Narrative Feature; The Hater for Best International Narrative Feature; and Socks On Fire for Best Documentary Feature. Shorts awards went to No More Wings for Best Narrative Short; My Father The Mover for Best Documentary Short; Friends for Best Animated Short and Cru-Raw for the Student Visionary Award. Director Ruthy Pribar was awarded the Nora Ephron Award for her feature, Asia.

“While we are not yet able to celebrate these incredible films at their premieres, we are so proud to celebrate them in partnership with our generous jurors through our 2020 Tribeca awards,” said Festival Director Cara Cusumano. “The jury chose to recognize a daring, innovative, entertaining, diverse group of films and filmmakers, and the Festival is pleased to honor all of them with our first ever virtual awards ceremony.”

The Tribeca Film Festival was originally set to take place on April 15-26, however it will be rescheduled due to the pandemic. 

For more information on all of the 2020 Tribeca Film Festival competition winners, visit tribecafilm.com/festival. Check out the full list of winners below:


The jury comprised of Cherien Dabis, Terry Kinney and Lucas Hedges awarded the following: 

Founders Award for Best Narrative Feature The Half of It, directed by Alice Wu. 

  • Jury Comment: “The film is so charming, it’s so energetic, it’s so fun, it’s so well-paced, it’s directed with such a sure hand, it’s a really confident film and the characters are really well drawn and the actors were fantastic.” 
  • Art Award: Julian Schnabel’s Le Scaphandre et le Papillon, 2007. Oil on map.

Best Actress in a U.S. Narrative Feature Film – Assol Abdullina, Materna.

  • Jury Comment: “Assol just has so much compelling energy; her emotions ran so deep…we cared about her dilemma.”

Best Actor in a U.S. Narrative Feature Film – Steve Zahn, Cowboys.

  • Jury Comment: “Steve showed great range in playing this character.”

Best Cinematography in a U.S. Narrative Feature FilmMaterna, Greta Zozula, Chananun Chotrungroj, Kelly Jeffrey, Cinematographers.

  • Jury Comment: “The visuals were striking and played with color, light and dark, in a very interesting way.” 
  • Special Jury Mention for Cinematography: My Heart Can’t Beat Unless You Tell It To.

Best Screenplay in a U.S. Narrative Feature FilmCowboys, Anna Kerrigan, Screenwriter.

  • Jury Comment: “A beautiful portrait of a father and his transgendered son.” 



The jury comprised of Sabine Hoffman, Judith Godrèche, Danny Boyle, William Hurt, and Demián Bichir awarded the following:

Best International Narrative FeatureThe Hater (Poland), directed by Jan Komasa.

  • Jury Comment: “Incredibly relevant for today; we were really impressed by the way it portrayed a character that is not immediately empathetic but really got us into the journey and the story.”
  • Art Award: Helen Marden’s January Golden Rock, 2020. Watercolor on paper.
  • Special Jury Mention: Ainu Mosir

Best Actor in an International Narrative Feature Film – Noe Hernandez, Kokoloko (Mexico).

  • Jury Comment: “For his raw and brave performance, taking a giant leap of faith, hand-to-hand with his director.”

Best Actress in an International Narrative Feature FilmShira Haas, Asia (Israel).

  • Jury Comment: “Her face is a never-ending landscape in which even the tiniest expression is heartbreaking; she’s an incredibly honest and present actress who brings depth to everything she does.”

Best Cinematography in an International Narrative Feature Film Asia (Israel), Daniella Nowitz, Cinematographer.

  • Jury Comments: “We were impressed with how the cinematography was supporting the emotionality of the story and was allowing us to really deeply feel with the characters.”

“Very simply and beautifully done.”

Best Screenplay in an International Narrative Feature Film Tryst With Destiny (India, France), Prashant Nair, Screenwriter.

  • Jury Comments: “How cleverly conceived and executed this script was!” “Beautifully made film.”



The jury comprised of Yance Ford, Regina K. Scully, Ryan Fleck, Chris Pine, and Peter Deming awarded the following:

Best Documentary FeatureSocks on Fire, Bo McGuire, Director.

  • Jury Comment: “The film used new techniques woven into documentary filmmaking and narrative storytelling.”
  • Art Award: Sterling Ruby’s DRFTRS, 2020. Collage, paint and glue on paper.
  • Special Jury Mention: Wonderboy

Best Cinematography in a Documentary Film499, Alejandro Mejia, Cinematographer.  

  • Jury Comment: “The filmmakers did an incredible job of weaving this fictional story into what’s happening today with the disappeared and to marry such grand visions that cinema can only do.”

Best Editing in a Documentary FilmFather Soldier Son, Amy Foote, Editor. 

  • Jury Comment: “Such a well-crafted film from start to finish; a story that stays with you.”



The jury comprised of Lukas Haas, Juno Temple, Nat Wolff, Grace Van Patten, and James Ponsoldt awarded the following:

Best New Narrative DirectorNobody Knows I’m Here, Gaspar Antillo, Director. 

  • Jury Comment: “A film that felt vital and alive, and every time we thought we knew who the protagonist was or what the world was it evolved and revealed more of itself to us.”  
  • Art Award: Rita Ackermann’s The Working Woman 3, 2018. Oil, crayon and graphite on paper. 



The jury comprised of Erin Lee Carr, Stacey Reiss, Josh Hutcherson, Joel McHale, and Gretchen Mol awarded the following:

Albert Maysles New Documentary Director AwardJacinta, Jessica Earnshaw, Director.

  • Jury Comments: “Incredibly engaging filmmaking,” “very moving, beautifully done.”
  • Art Award: Gus Van Sant’s Achelous and Hercules, 2016. Enamel on paper.
  • Special Jury mention: The Last Out



The jury comprised of Gina Rodriguez, Aparna Nancherla, Anna Baryshnikov, Regina Hall, and Lizzy Caplan awarded: 

The Nora Ephron AwardAsia, Director, Ruthy Pribar.

  • Jury Comment: “From the writing, to the directing, to the camera moves, to the direction for the acting, to the way Ms. Pribar told a story through non-speaking was just outstanding.”
  • Art Award: Pat Steir’s Untitled, 2008. Oil, pencil, ink, and acrylic on paper. 
  • Special Jury Mention: My Wonderful Wanda 



The jury comprised of Pamela Adlon, Kerry Bishe, Kasi Lemmon, Taylor Hackford, and Marshall Curry awarded the following:

Best Narrative Short No More Wings, Abraham Adeyemi, Director. 

  • Jury Comments: “It checked every box in terms of authenticity, and heart, and it was funny!” “It’s such an elegant piece of filmmaking.” 
  • Art Award: Robert Nava: Medusa’s Walk, 2020. Acrylic, oil stick, crayon, and pencil on paper.
  • Special Jury Mention: Soup 

Best Animated Short Friends, Florian Grolig, Director.

  • Jury Comment: “Gorgeous, sparse, monochromatic animation.”
  • Art Award: Stephen Hannock’s Wallsend Morning on the River Tyne, 2019. Oil on board
  • Special Jury Mention: Kapaemahu

The jury comprised of Asia Kate Dillon, Marti Noxon and Sheila Nevins awarded the following for the 2020 Short Documentary and Student Visionary Competitions:

Best Documentary ShortMy Father The Mover, Julia Jansch, Director.

  • Jury Comment: “A “movement” film which frees people from the pain had the biggest impression on us and lasted through the tragedies we’re going through now.”
  • Art Award: Francesco Clemente’s Flag US, 2018. Watercolor and miniature on paper.
  • Special Jury Mention: Welcome To A Bright White Limbo 

Student Visionary AwardCru-Raw, David Oesch, Director. 

  • Jury Comment: “It’s rare to see in a student festival something very real with a great Macabre climax that’s really sticky.”
  • Art Award: Vahakn Arslanian’s Light of Airbus, 2009. Graphite on paper in artist’s frame. 
  • Special Jury mention: The Last Ferry From Grass Island



The finalists for the 2020 Tribeca X Awards, sponsored by PwC, are available for public viewing on Tribecafilm.com. Tribeca X recognizes excellence in branded storytelling at the intersection of advertising and entertainment. 

The jury comprised of  Stefon Bristol, Filmmaker; Taylor Johns, Head of Content Production at YETI; David Lee, Chief Creative Officer at Squarespace; Matt MacDonald, Chief Creative Officer at Omnicom for AT&T; and Bonnie Siegler, Founder at Eight and a Half awarded the following:

Best Short Pay Day, Director, Morgan Cooper 

  • Brand: Synchrony Bank
  • Agency: Giant Spoon
  • Production Co: ColorCreative
  • Jury Comments:   “This funny and stylish narrative gives a fresh and insightful perspective on getting out of a comfortable cycle and start chasing after one’s dreams.”

Best Series Girls Room, Director, Tiffany Johnson

  • Writer: Lena Waithe
  • Brand: Dove
  • Agency: attn:, BBH Entertainment
  • Jury Comment:   “The unique format of this series caught our eye right away and how it paired perfectly with this targeted audience.”

Best Feature U Shoot Videos? Director, Morgan Cooper

  • Brand: Adorama
  • Jury Comments: “You had us at the shocking ending – while we all loved the storytelling and performances up to that point, how the feature built up to that climax was very impactful.”

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