‘SURVIVORS’ a 2015 Gucci Tribeca Documentary Fund Awardee

July 31, 2015    

SVS_07 (Ambulence Driver)We are thrilled to announce that the feature length documentary film Survivors, that we are producing in collaboration with Sierra Leonean filmmakers Arthur Pratt and Lansana Mansaray, is among the ten amazing film to receive a 2015 Gucci Tribeca Documentary Fund Grant.

Here is the official press release:

2015 Gucci Tribeca Documentary Fund Grantees Announced

$150,000 to be Awarded to Documentaries that Highlight and Humanize Global Social Issues, including new Award Presented in Partnership with the AOL Charitable Foundation
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Over One Million Dollars Given to Filmmakers through Fund since Inception

[New York, NY – July 30, 2015] – Tribeca Film Institute® (TFI) and Gucci today announced the 2015 grant recipients for the Gucci Tribeca Documentary Fund. The fund provides production and finishing finances, along with year-round support and guidance, to feature-length documentary films that highlight and humanize critical domestic and international social issues.

Ten projects have been selected from 540 submissions to receive a total of $150,000 in grants, to be administered by TFI. Now in its eighth year, the fund has supported 64 films and provided more than $1 million in grants.

This year, the AOL Charitable Foundation joins the Gucci Tribeca Documentary Fund to present grants to four filmmakers whose documentaries illuminate the lives of women and youth around the globe, and spotlight the ways they are working to improve their communities and futures.

The grantees were selected by a jury comprised of: Filmmaker RACHEL BOYNTON (BIG MEN, OUR BRAND IS CRISIS), COMMON, Filmmaker GIA COPPOLA (PALO ALTO), DYLLAN MCGEE (Founder & Executive Producer of MAKERS and McGee Media), CHARLIE PHILLIPS (Head of Documentaries, The Guardian), and DEBBIE ZIMMERMAN (Executive Director, Women Make Movies).

This year’s grantees cover a wide variety of world affairs, domestic issues and social conflicts, including the Ebola outbreak, the tragic effects of cyber bullying, women breaking barriers and stereotypes, and the attack of a national community-organizing group and how this attack uncovered prostitution, voter fraud and the implications for the struggle to address inequality. In addition to funding, grantees will each receive year-round support from TFI, including one-on-one guidance and consultations to help each film reach completion, enter the marketplace, and find broader audiences.

“We’re so proud of our grantees this year and believe that the selection of works addresses compelling and personal stories that bring attention to various domestic and international social issues,” said Jose Rodriguez, Director of Documentary Programs at Tribeca Film Institute. “We’re also grateful for the continuous support that we have from our partners, including Gucci and our new presenting partner, the AOL Charitable Foundation. It is with their support, that we are able to bring these incredible works to life.”

“At AOL and the AOL Charitable Foundation we see the value and importance of giving women a platform to tell their stories that empower and inspire so many of us,” said Sara Link, President of the AOL Charitable Foundation. “We are thrilled to be partnering with the Gucci Tribeca Documentary Fund to support the work of filmmakers telling these stories all over the world.”

“There were so many inspiring and thought-provoking submissions for this year’s Gucci Tribeca Documentary Fund,” said Dyllan McGee, 2015 Jury Member, “For that reason, it was an honor to be part of the jury, and I’m confident that the grantees and their incredible works will bring attention to the important social issues in our world that need to be addressed.”

2015 Recipients of the Gucci Tribeca Documentary Fund

• ACORN AND THE FIRESTORM, Directed and Produced by Reuben Atlas & Sam Pollard. ACORN, a national community-organizing group devoted to empowering lower income communities, is attacked. The story involves a fake prostitute and voter fraud, and cuts to the heart of the political divide.

• ANGELS ARE MADE OF LIGHT, Directed and Produced by James Longley; Produced by Basil Shadid; Executive Produced by Joslyn Barnes. ANGELS ARE MADE OF LIGHT reveals the daily struggles and inner lives of students and teachers at a school in Kabul, Afghanistan during the closing years of America’s longest war.

• BEITAR (WORKING TITLE), Directed and Produced by Maya Zinshtein; Executive Produced by John Battsek and Nicole Stott; Produced by Geoff Arbourne. In January 2013 a historic transfer deal transported two Muslim players into the heart of Israel, Beitar Jerusalem F.C. One season and one football team in crisis, and behind the story lurks the money and power that will send the club spiraling out of control.

• ROLL RED ROLL, Directed & Produced by Nancy Schwartzman; Executive Produced by Jennifer Fox; Produced by Jessica Devaney and Steven Lake. A whistle-blowing blogger uncovers disturbing social media evidence documenting the gang rape of a teenage girl. The story of a football town divided, ROLL RED ROLL is an immersive mystery thriller examining rape culture in the 21st century.

• SURVIVORS, Directed and Produced by Banker White; Co-Directed and Produced by Anna Fitch & Arthur Pratt. Through the eyes of Sierra Leonean filmmakers, SURVIVORS presents a portrait of their country during the Ebola outbreak, exposing the complexity of the epidemic and the socio-political turmoil that lies in its wake.

• THE OAKLAND POLICE PROJECT, Directed by Peter Nicks; Produced by Linda Davis; Executive Produced by Jon Else; Edited and Produced by Lawrence Lerew. This is a film about police power and restraint unfolding deep inside the famously troubled Oakland Police Department. We observe in intimate detail the rare perspective of beleaguered officers who are often viewed as oppressors in the community they serve, even as they and their young chief struggle to rebuild trust in the face of mass protests, budget cuts, and more violent crimes per officer than any city in America.

2015 Recipients of the AOL Charitable Foundation Award

• AUDRIE AND DAISY, Directed and Produced by Jon Shenk & Bonni Cohen; Produced by Sara Dosa & Richard Berge; Edited by Don Bernier. In two towns on different sides of America, two teenage girls pass out while intoxicated at high school parties, and, while unconscious, both are sexually assaulted by boys they call their friends. In the aftermath, the girls each endure online harassment, both attempt suicide, and tragically, one girl dies. AUDRIE & DAISY explores this new public square of shame from the perspective of the teenagers and their families – including the boys involved in the assaults and the girls willing to speak out publically for the first time.

• BELLY OF THE BEAST, Directed and Produced by Erika Cohn; Executive Produced by Geralyn Dreyfous and Mark Lipson; Produced by Christen Hepuakoa Marquez. The significance of BELLY OF THE BEAST lies in the banality of the evil it exposes, intimately chronicling the journey of women fighting reproductive injustice in their communities.

• A JOURNEY OF A THOUSAND MILES: PEACEKEEPERS, Directed and Produced by Geeta Gandbhir & Sharmeen Chinoy; Executive Produced by Perri Peltz. A JOURNEY OF A THOUSAND MILES: PEACEKEEPERS follows three women in an all-female, predominantly Muslim unit of police officers sent to post-earthquake Haiti as UN Peacekeepers for one year. The mission challenges these women while shattering commonly held stereotypes.

• THE WAR TO BE HER, Directed by Erin Heidenreich Produced by Cassandra Sanford-Rosenthal and Jonathon Power. In the Taliban controlled area of Waziristan, sports are decried as un-Islamic and girls rarely leave their homes. But she did, by pretending to be a boy. She’s now a world-renowned athlete and a flashpoint in her country’s battle over feminine identity. Her name is Maria Toorpakai Wazir, the young woman known as Genghis Khan. This film chronicles Maria and her family on the run from the Taliban.

About Tribeca Film Institute
Tribeca Film Institute champions storytellers to be catalysts for change in their communities and around the world. Through grants and professional development programs, TFI supports a diverse, exceptional group of filmmakers and media artists, providing them resources needed to fully realize their stories and connect with audiences. The Institute’s educational programming leverages an extensive film community network to help underserved New York City students learn filmmaking and gain the media skills necessary to be productive citizens and creative individuals in the 21st century. Featuring hands-on training and exposure to socially relevant films, the Institute administers programs to more than 25,000 students annually. TFI was founded by Robert De Niro, Jane Rosenthal, and Craig Hatkoff in the wake of September 11, 2001 and is a 501(c)(3) year-round nonprofit arts organization.

About Gucci
Founded in Florence in 1921, Gucci is one of the world’s leading luxury fashion brands, with a renowned reputation for creativity, innovation and Italian craftsmanship. Gucci is part of the Kering Group, a world leader in apparel and accessories that owns a portfolio of powerful luxury and sport and lifestyle brands. For further information about Gucci, visit www.gucci.com.

About AOL Charitable Foundation
AOL Charitable Foundation is a 501(c)(3) private foundation committed to creating opportunities for women, girls and investing in the next generation of young leaders through grant making to exceptional nonprofit organizations focused on these communities. The Foundation allocates its resources in four strategic areas, including fostering leadership and empowerment, improving economic opportunity, increasing access through education and technology, and cultivating creativity. For additional information on the AOL Charitable Foundation please visit http://corp.aol.com/our-values/corporate-citizenship.

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