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2019 SVFF Award Winners

Audience Award

The Audience Award is voted on by movie goers.
WINNER: Long Shot, directed by Jonathan Levine
Audience Award Finalists:
The Parts You Lose, directed by Christopher Cantwell
Ghost Fleet, directed by Shannon Service and Jeffrey Waldron
Running with Beto, directed by David Modigliani
Sea of Shadows, directed by Richard Ladkani

Producer’s Vision Award

This award recognizes a producer’s ability to keep a dramatic, feature length film in focus during the journey of the project.
WINNER: Running with Beto, producer Jeff Steen

One in a Million Awards

The One in a Million Awards honor feature length stories made for under one million dollars. One narrative and one documentary film are each awarded.
NARRATIVE WINNER: Lemonade, directed by Ioana Uricaru
DOCUMENTARY WINNER: Tigerland, directed by Ross Kaufman and produced by Fisher Stevens

The Shorty Award

The best short film across all categories.
WINNER: Kate in Oxnard, directed by Emily Tomson

Gem State Award

Presented by Festival sponsor Zions Bank, this award recognizes an Idaho filmmaker whose work best reflects the beauty and diversity of the Gem State.
WINNER: MAR: Episode 1, directed by Martin McGreevy


The lucky winner receives $1,000 and a National Geographic Expedition to explore wildlife and wild places up close alongside Nat Geo Explorers.
WINNER: The Flip, Reed Rickert

Nat Geo Further Award

The National Geographic Further Award recognizes a leader whose work is uniquely innovative, timely, and impactful—someone who has boldly pushed the boundaries of his or her field, and who serves as an outstanding ambassador for that breakthrough work.
WINNER: Mariana van Zeller

The Film Lab

Tito’s Handmade Vodka presented The Film Lab, hosted by Hannah Fidell. Winners of the competition traveled to the festival, where the work-in-progress film was screen-tested for audience feedback and will be taken to two additional cities before locking and completing the picture with Los Angeles-based post-production company The Farm, who will provide up to $185,000 in services. Variety is a partner of the program.
WINNER: Colewell, directed by Tom Quinn, produced by Matthew Thurm, Craig Shilowich, Joshua Blum, and Alexandra Byer

High Scribe

The competition gives finalists an opportunity for one-on-one meetings with some of the industry’s finest to discuss their work; the winner receives mentoring from an experienced professional.
WINNER: The Graveyard Shift, written by Max Andrew Dubinsky and Matthew Carpenter

1 Potato Winner

The short screenplay competition awards the screenwriter a $5,000 stipend to help shoot their film in Idaho.
WINNER: Girls Are Strong Here, written by Scott Burkhardt

Future Filmmaker Forum

Showcases student-made films and encourages students in their craft, storytelling, and self-expression.
Hot Shot Winner ($1,000 prize): Control Yourself, directed by Zoe Takaki
Gabriel Spirit Award ($300 prize): Beyond the Wall, directed by Mia Nelson
Gem State Jr. Award ($500 prize): For Us, directed by Justin Buss