Friday, September 18, 2020
Sun Valley Film Festival Announces Winners
Sun Valley Film Director Candice Pate and Festival Founder Teddy Grennan with Geena Davis before the Vision Award ceremony.
Wednesday, March 22, 2017


Hometown hero Rebecca Rusch’s new film ended up being the audience favorite of the 2017 Sun Valley Film Festival.

And, yup, the extraordinarily creative fanciful “Dave Made a Maze” was one of two winners in the One in a Million Awards.


AUDIENCE AWARD—The favorite among movie goers was “Blood Road,” which follows Ketchum mountain biker Rebecca Rusch along the Ho Chi Minh Trail in search of the place her fighter pilot father was shot down during the Vietnam War. Director: Nicholas Schrunk.

PRODUCER’S VISION AWARD—“Dina,” a sweet sensitive documentary following a couple with autism as they prepare for their wedding day. Producer: Dan Sickles. This award recognizes a producer’s ability to keep a dramatic, feature length film in focus during the project’s journey.

ONE IN A MILLION AWARDS—Honors feature-length stories made for under $1 million.

DOCUMENTARY WINNER—“Beyond the Wall,” a look at the difficulties men have staying out of prison given the limited resources provided them upon their release. Producers Jenny Phillips and Bestor Cram.

NARRATIVE WINNER—“Dave Made a Maze,” an engaging look at what happens when several friends enter a cardboard maze that keeps growing. Producer: Bill Watterson.

SHORTY AWARD—“Kendall Got a Rose,” about an estranged couple bonding over an episode of “The Bachelor” by Luke Haskard.

GEM STATE AWARD—“Rita,” a 5-minute short by Ron Torres portraying a young Boise refugee who achieves her dreams creating colorful blouses and dresses reflecting her cultural heritage. This $1,000 jury prize recognizes the Idaho filmmaker whose work best reflects the beauty and diversity of Idaho.

HOT SHOT AWARD—“The Story of Three Rings: A Memoir of Dana Schwartz,” by Dora Schoenberg. Actor Jack Falahee presented this award, along with a $1,000 cash prize sponsored by the Marshall Frankel Foundation to the best film by a student filmmaker under 18 years of age.

Film Jury members included the dean of AFI Jan Schuette, head of film programs at Austin Film Society Holly Herrick, producer Lauren Selig and producer/director Stephen Crisman.


NAT GEO WILD TO INSPIRE—Anai Colyer, who produced “Ambition.” Colyer will get a chance to study filmmaking and wildlife in the Maasai Steppe in Tanzania with a National Geographic cinematographer.

HIGH SCRIBE—SB Edwards and “Nowhere.” Edwards will have one-on-one meetings with the industry’s finest to discuss their work. Lab host was Academy Award-winning screenwriter Charles Randolph and the judge, Academy Award-nominated producer Chris Moore.

ONE POTATO WINNER—Samantha Silva, of Boise, will get $5,000 to shoot her screenplay “The Big Burn” in Idaho.

THE FILM LAB—“Unlovable,” a work-in-progress about a love-addicted woman who learns about real intimacy, directed by Suzi Yoonesi, written by Charlene deGuzman, Sarah Adina Smith and Mark Duplass and produced by Jen Roskind. Tito’s Handmade Vodka presented $10,000 in finishing funds for The Film Lab hosted by Trevor Groth, director of programming for the Sundance Film Festival.

THE SHORT FILM LAB—“Who Decides?” by Mylissa Fitzimmons. Tito’s Handmade Vodka presented $10,000 towards making this screenplay in a competition hosted by Michael Tully and judged by Jim Burke of Focus Features.


SVFF VISION AWARD—Geena Davis, actress and founder of an institute championing increased opportunities for women in Hollywood, for providing keen insight, influence and initiative to fulfill a creative vision.

PIONEER AWARD—Brett Ratner, director of such films as “Money Talks,” for being a true trailblazer.

RISING STAR—Allison Williams, star of “Girls” and “Get Out,” as a breakthrough artist.

SNOW ANGEL AWARD—Jamie Redford and Jill Tidman, The Redford Center, for using films for environmental advocacy.


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