‘Collective’ Named Top Documentary at Cinema Eye Honors Other awards go to “Time,” “Welcome to Chechnya,” “The Truffle Hunters” and “The Mole Agent”
By Steve Pond
The Romanian film “Collective” has been named the best nonfiction film of 2020 at the 13th annual Cinema Eye Honors, a New York-based awards show devoted to all facets of documentary filmmaking.
Kirsten Johnson took the directing prize for “Dick Johnson Is Dead,” while the award for outstanding debut went to Garrett Bradley for “Time,” which also won for its editing.
“Boys State” won the Audience Award, the only Cinema Eye Honor category in which the public was invited to cast ballots.
The Spotlight Award, which was designed to put attention on a film that deserves wider exposure, went to “The Earth is Blue as an Orange,” directed by Iryna Tsilyk. The Heterodox Award, given to a film that combines nonfictional and fictional techniques, was won by Bill and Turner Ross’ “Bloody Nose, Empty Pockets.”
“The Truffle Hunters” won for cinematography, while “Feels Good Man” won in the graphic design or animation category and “The Mole Agent” won for its musical score.
“Welcome to Chechnya” took the award for production, and also won in the broadcast categories as the year’s best broadcast film. “I’ll Be Gone in the Dark” won for broadcast series.
The awards were presented at a virtual ceremony in lieu of the usual in-person awards show in New York City. In the previous 12 years of the Cinema Eye Honors, its winner has gone on to win the Oscar for Best Documentary Feature only three times, the last of those coming in 2015 with “Citizenfour.” In all but three years, though, the CEH winner has been nominated for the documentary Oscar. This year, all five of the nominees in the Outstanding Nonfiction Feature category made the Oscar documentary shortlist. “Collective” is also on the Oscar shortlist in the Best International Feature Film category.
The IDA Documentary Awards, the other major awards show devoted to nonfiction filmmaking, gave its top prize to “Crip Camp” in January. Last November, the Critics Choice Documentary Awards named “Dick Johnson Is Dead” the best doc of 2020.
Outstanding Nonfiction Feature: “Collective,” directed and produced by Alexander Nanau, produced by Blanca Oana, Bernard Michaud and Hanna Kastelicová
Outstanding Direction: “Dick Johnson is Dead,” Kirsten Johnson
Outstanding Production: “Welcome to Chechnya,” Alice Henty, Askold Kurov and Joy Tomchin
Outstanding Editing: “Time,” Gabriel Rhodes
Outstanding Cinematography: “The Truffle Hunters,” Michael Dweck and Gregory Kershaw
Outstanding Original Score: “The Mole Agent,” Vincent Van Warmerdam
Outstanding Graphic Design or Animation: “Feels Good Man,” Jenna Caravello and Arthur Jones
Outstanding Debut: “Time,” Directed by Garrett Bradley
Outstanding Nonfiction Short: “A Love Song for Latasha,” Directed by Sophia Nahli Allison
Audience Choice Prize: “Boys State,” Directed by Amanda McBaine and Jesse Moss
Spotlight: “The Earth is Blue as an Orange,” Directed by Iryna Tsilyk
Heterodox: “Bloody Nose, Empty Pockets,” Directed by Bill Ross and Turner Ross
The Unforgettables (Non-Competitive Honor):
“Boys State,” Stephen Garza and Rene Otero
“Collective,” Cătălin Tolontan
“Crip Camp,” Judith Heumann
“Dick Johnson is Dead,” Dick Johnson
“I Am Greta,” Greta Thunberg
“John Lewis: Good Trouble,” John Lewis
“Mayor,” Musa Hadid
“The Mole Agent,” Sergio Chamy
“Mucho Mucho Amor,” Walter Mercado
“Softie,” Boniface Mwangi
“A Thousand Cuts,” Maria Ressa
“Through the Night,” Delores “Nunu” Hogan
“Time,” Fox Richardson
“Welcome to Chechnya,” Olga Baranova and David Isteev
Outstanding Broadcast Film: “Welcome to Chechnya,” David France
Outstanding Broadcast Series: “I’ll Be Gone in the Dark,” Liz Garbus
Outstanding Editing in a Broadcast Film or Series: Damian Rodriguez and David Tedeschi, “Rolling Thunder Revue: A Bob Dylan Story by Martin Scorsese”
Outstanding Cinematography in a Broadcast Film or Series: Thorsten Thielow, “I’ll Be Gone in the Dark”