Although it continues through this weekend, the Tribeca Film Festival held its awards gala on Thursday night with top honors in the World Documentary category going to Alexandra Codina's MONICA & DAVID. The jury - comprised of top documentary filmmakers Marshall Curry, Margaret Brown, Jessica Alba and Whoopi Goldberg (among others) also presented Best New Documentary Filmmaker to Clio Barnard for THE ARBOR. Both films' directors received a $25,000 cash prize.
MONICA & DAVID, the story of two adults with Downs syndrome, heads next to Hot Docs where it will play next week. NOW Toronto already has a preview, calling it "one of the most humane and emotionally rich films you'll see this year". Prior to Tribeca, indieWIRE had some questions for director Codina.
Lots of folks have been talking about THE ARBOR and its mix of fiction/nonfiction in telling the story of playwright Andrea Dunbar. Writing at The National, David D'Arcy describes:
"In THE ARBOR, named for a grim housing estate in Bradford, England, where the playwright Andrea Dunbar (1961-90) lived with her daughter Lorraine, the director Clio Barnard blends fiction and non-fiction in the story of a troubled family. Actors lip-synch testimony about Dunbar, who rose to success as an author but couldn’t rise above her surroundings and addiction."
More about THE ARBOR in a future post.
The New York Documentary Competition prize went to C. Scott Willis' THE WOODMANS, which tells the story of a tragedy in a family of artists.