Posted on Thursday, January 26, 2017

Emerging Female Directors Honored At 2017 Horizon Awards

The winners of the Third Annual Horizon Awards were announced by the award co-founders Cassian Elwes, Lynette Howell Taylor and Christine Vachon on January 22, 2017 at the WME Lounge in Park City, Utah during the 2017 Sundance Film Festival. The Horizon Award was established to support emerging female directors and address the significant disparity between the numbers of female-to-male directors.  Participants submit a self-directed short that is two minutes or less in length.  This years winners were selected out of 53 submitted films.

The 2017 judges included Catherine Hardwicke (Thirteen, Twilight), Kimberly Pierce (Boys Don’t Cry, Carrie), Jamie Babbit (But I’m a Cheerleader, Addicted to Fresno), Karyn Kusama (Jennifer’s Body, Æon Flux), The 2017 winners were Tina Mabry (Mississippi Damned, Queen Sugar), and Vicky Jensen (Shrek, Shark Tale). Brittany “B Monét” Fennell and Andy Villanueva  IN addition to receiving cash awards during the event, The Horizon Award made it possible for both Ms. Fennell & Ms. Villanueva to experience an all-expense paid mentorship to the 2017 Sundance Film Festival.  Shivani Rawat, CEO of ShivHans Pictures, also donated $25,000 to the Horizon Award winners for continuing education and sponsorship on film projects.

Being a woman in a largely male-dominated field presents challenges, one of which is balancing the serious gender and diversity gap within the filmmaking community,” said Rawat upon the completion of the event. “As a young, Indian-American female producer myself this is a personal challenge, which is why ShivHans Pictures is proud to support this year’s women filmmakers as a patron of the Horizon Award.”

The Third Annual Horizon Award partnered with new and returning sponsors: The Adrienne Shelly Foundation, Sundance Institute, Women In Film (WIF) Los Angeles, The Black List, CreativeFuture, The Creative Mind Group, ScreenEngine, MPRM, Twitter, MPAA, WME, and ShivHans Pictures.  Returning sponsor WME, hosted the event at their WME / IMG Lounge in Park City. Among the presenters were Jack Black (The Polka King, Kung Fu Panda), Carey Mulligan (Mudbound, Suffragette), Sharon Lawrence (NYPD Blue, Shameless), and Dee Rees (Director of Mudbound, Pariah).

In addition to attending The Horizon Awards, two of the the event’s co-founders had films they were representing in this year’s fest. Vachon was attached to Beatriz at Dinner, Lemon, Mercy, and Where is Kyra and Elwes was representing Mudbound,  

To learn more about the Horizon Awards, please visit: