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‘Welcome to Chechnya’ Leads Cinema Eye Honors’ Broadcast Nominations

The New York-based documentary organization also announces a Stay Focused initiative to help filmmakers who lost opportunities because of the pandemic


David France’s “Welcome to Chechnya,” a documentary about LGBTQ activists trying to help during the Chechnya government’s brutal crackdown on gays and lesbians, leads all films in nominations in the Cinema Eye Honors’ broadcast categories, which were announced on Thursday during a virtual edition of its annual fall lunch.

Cinema Eye, a New York-based organization founded in 2007 to recognize all aspects of nonfiction filmmaking, also announced its new Stay Focused initiative. The program spotlights 12 films by up-and-coming filmmakers who lost the chance for theatrical exhibition and film-festival exposure because of the coronavirus pandemic. Cinema Eye has pledged to find “in-person opportunities” for the filmmakers once the pandemic subsides, starting with theatrical screenings at the new Vidiots Theatre in Los Angeles in late 2021.

The 12 films include Cecilia Aldorondo’s “Landfall,” which recently won a jury award at DOC NYC; David Osit’s “Mayor,” about the Christian mayor of a Palestinian city; and Elizabeth Lo’s “Stray,” which follows three stray dogs in Istanbul.

Four broadcast categories were announced on Thursday, with “Welcome to Chechnya” landing nominations for editing and cinematography as well as for Outstanding Broadcast Film. In that category, it will be competing with Ivy Meeropol’s “Bully. Coward. Victim.: The Story of Roy Cohn,” Carol Dysinger’s Oscar winning “Learning to Skateboard in a War Zone (If You’re a Girl),” Martin Scorsese’s doc/fiction hybrid “Rolling Thunder Revue: A Bob Dylan Story” and Richard Ladkani’s “Sea of Shadows.”

In the Outstanding Broadcast Series category, the nominees were “Atlanta’s Missing and Murdered: The Lost Children,” “Hillary,” “I’ll Be Gone in the Dark,” “The Last Dance” and “Love Fraud.”

Cinema Eye also announced the Shorts List, 10 short documentaries from which it will chose the finalists in its Nonfiction Short Film category. The list contains two films that recently screened in theWrap’s ShortList Film Festival, Barbara Attie, Janet Goldwater and Mike Attie’s “Abortion Helpline, This Is Lisa” and Charlie Tyrell’s “Broken Orchestra.”

The nominees and honorees:

Stay Focused initiative

“The American Sector,” directed by Courtney Stephens and Pacho Velez
“Bulletproof,” directed by Todd Chandler
“Down a Dark Stairwell,” directed by Ursula Liang
“Jacinta,” directed by Jessica Earnshaw
“Landfall,” directed by Cecilia Aldorondo
“Mayor,” directed by David Osit
“P.S. Burn This Letter Please,” directed by Michael Seligman and Jennifer Tiexiera
“Sisters With Transistors,” directed by Lisa Rovner
“Socks on Fire,” directed by Bo Mcguire
“Stray,” directed by Elizabeth Lo
“Through the Night,” directed by Loira Limbal
“Two Gods,” directed by Zeshawn Ali


Outstanding Broadcast Film
“Bully. Coward. Victim.: The Story of Roy Cohn,” directed by Ivy Meeropol (HBO)
“Learning to Skateboard in a Warzone (If You’re a Girl),” directed by Carol Dysinger (A&E)
“Rolling Thunder Revue: A Bob Dylan Story by Martin Scorsese,” directed by Martin Scorsese (Netflix)
“Sea of Shadows,” directed by Richard Ladkani (National Geographic)
“Welcome to Chechnya,” directed by David France (HBO)

Outstanding Broadcast Series
Atlanta’s Missing and Murdered: The Lost Children” (HBO) directed by Sam Pollard, Maro Chermayeff, Jeff Dupre and Joshua Bennett
“Hillary” (Hulu) directed by Nanette Burstein
“I’ll Be Gone in the Dark” (HBO) directed by Liz Garbus
“The Last Dance” (ESPN and Netflix) directed by Jason Hehir
“Love Fraud” (Showtime) directed by Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady

Outstanding Editing in a Broadcast Film or Series
Anne Alvergue and Adam Kurnitz, “Bully. Coward. Victim.: The Story of Roy Cohn” (HBO)
Erin Barnett, Jawad Metni and Alyse Ardell Spiegel, “I’ll Be Gone in the Dark” (HBO)
Chad Beck, Devin Concannon, Abhay Sofsky and Ben Sozanski, “The Last Dance” (ESPN and Netflix)
Damian Rodriguez and David Tedeschi, “Rolling Thunder Revue: A Bob Dylan Story by Martin Scorsese” (Netflix)
Tyler H. Walk, “Welcome to Chechnya” (HBO)

Outstanding Cinematography in a Broadcast Film or Series
Thorsten Thielow, “I’ll Be Gone in the Dark” (HBO)
Nominee(s) to be Determined, “Night On Earth” – Episode: “Moonlit Plains” (Netflix)
Alexander A. Mora, “The Nightcrawlers” (National Geographic)
Richard Ladkani, “Sea of Shadows” (National Geographic)
Ian Moubayed and Sam Price-Waldman, “The Vow” (HBO)
Askold Kurov, “Welcome to Chechnya” (HBO)

Cinema Eye Shorts List
Abortion Helpline, This is Lisa,” directed by Barbara Attie, Janet Goldwater and Mike Attie
“Broken Orchestra,” directed by Charlie Tyrell
“Dafa Metti (Difficult),” directed by Tal Amiran
“Flower Punk,” directed by Alison Klayman
“Huntsville Station,” directed by Chris Filippone and Jamie Meltzer
“John Was Trying to Contact Aliens,” directed by Matthew Killip
“A Love Song for Latasha,” directed by Sophia Nahli Allison
“See You Next Time,” directed by Crystal Kayiza
“Then Comes the Evening,” directed by Maja Novakovic
“The Toxic Pigs of Fukushima,” directed by Otto Bell