Jen McGowan (Rust Creek) and Angie Wang (MDMA) tied to win “Best Directress” awards while Dan Mirvish (Bernard and Huey) and Adam Rifkin (The Last Movie Star) tied to win the “Best Director” category on Sunday night at Film Threat’s 25th Anniversary Award This! awards. Film Threat first launched Award This! in 1994 as a joint effort between the magazine and Comedy Central.
“It has always been Film Threat’s mission to champion the types of movies that are often ignored by traditional awards shows. Everything from indie horror, sci-fi, comedy, to small independent gems to certain categories of the creative arts in film that don’t receive the recognition they deserve,” said Film Threat founder Chris Gore. “Award This! was created to solve this problem and create an awareness of films that may not open on 3,000 screens across America, but are easily discovered if audiences look beyond the multiplex.” Over 30 international film critics and writers for Film Threat voted on the nominations and awards.
“For me, one of the best things about filmmaking is the sense of tribe created… I am not only thrilled and stunned to receive Film Threat’s ‘Best Directress’ award, I am blessed to share the honor with Dan, Adam and Jen, now part of my film tribe.”
“This was a huge honor and thrill to win an Oscar-night directing award, and to share it with such amazing filmmakers as Jen, Angie and Adam,” said Mirvish from the Hollywood studio where Award This! was streamed live during breaks in the Oscar® telecast.
“For me, one of the best things about filmmaking is the sense of tribe created,” said Wang. “When we share our hearts and passion with one another, we become ‘family.’ So I am not only thrilled and stunned to receive Film Threat’s ‘Best Directress’ award, I am blessed to share the honor with Dan, Adam and Jen, now part of my film tribe.”
“Thank you so much Film Threat for recognizing Rust Creek in this way. My fellow nominees and winners made fantastic films and to be included among them makes me incredibly proud,” said McGowan. “Awards like these mean more people will see our movies that we all worked so hard to bring to audiences.”
“I’m elated and beyond humbled to receive this award from Film Threat, the definitive word on cool cinema since 1985,” added Rifkin, who’s directed such films as The Dark Backward and Detroit Rock City. “And I’m honored to share it with such brilliant fellow filmmakers, Angie, Jen and Dan.”
“If the Academy and almost every other awards group can have separate categories for ‘Actress’ and ‘Actor,’ then it seems just as reasonable to offer ‘Directress’ and ‘Director’ categories to ensure that the plethora of talented women directing films each year are being honored equally,” added Gore about Award This!’s unique dual-gendered directing prizes.
“These four filmmakers each represent the spirit of true independent filmmaking…”
Among the ten women directing nominees were such acclaimed filmmakers as Debra Granik (Leave No Trace), Josephine Decker (Madeline’s Madeline), Mimi Leder (On the Basis of Sex), Christine Kallas (The Rainbow Experiment) and Chloe Zhao (The Rider). Among the male nominees were Boots Riley (Sorry to Bother You), Armando Iannucci (The Death of Stalin), Jeremiah Zagar (We The Animals), Ike Barinholtz (The Oath), Bo Burnham (Eighth Grade) and Alex Garland (Annihilation), Ali Abassi (Border) and Paul Dano (Wildlife). Wang, Mirvish and Rifkin’s films were also nominees in Film Threat’s equivalent of “Best Picture” category, called “Movie we LOVED That You Probably Never Knew Existed,” which was ultimately won by White Rabbit .
“These four filmmakers each represent the spirit of true independent filmmaking,” said Gore. “But if for whatever reason their directing careers all falter, I truly hope that McGowan, Wang, Mirvish & Rifkin start a law firm.”
Here’s the complete list of Award This! nominees in all categories and the list of winners is here. Congrats to all of our nominees and winners! Award This! will return in 2020. Until then, enjoy photos from our 2019 event.