The Nantucket Film Festival’s most esteemed awards recognize writers and filmmakers from film and television for their significant contributions to the art of storytelling. These honors are presented annually durning the film festival at a gala celebration. The 2016 ceremony took place on Saturday, June 25 at the 'Sconset Casino.

2016 Event Hosted by SETH MEYERS

Comedian and writer Seth Meyers is the host of NBC late-night talk show Late Night with Seth Meyers. Meyers was formerly a head writer for Saturday Night Live and also hosted the show's news parody segment Weekend Update. In addition, he hosted the 66th Primetime Emmy Awards in 2014 and is also the co-creator, co-writer and executive producer behind the IFC mockumentary TV series Documentary Now!.



The Screenwriters Tribute Award is the highest honor presented by the festival. Established in 1998, it was created to honor an individual whose written body of work has made a distinct impact on American cinema. The Screenwriters Tribute Award is not a "lifetime achievement" award, but rather an acknowledgement of the indelible impact these artists have on the hearts and minds of people all over the world through their writing for the screen. They are what link us to our past, and provide a glimpse into our future.


2016 Honors: OLIVER STONE

Oliver Stone is unafraid to peer into the darkest corners of our collective psyche. For more than 30 years, his masterful eye and ear have shaped the way we understand American history by mapping our country’s more recent triumphs and failures. From the traumas of the 60s and 70s (JFK, Platoon) to the greed and frenzy of the 80s, 90s, and beyond (Wall Street, Natural Born Killers), his body of work stands as a landmark in contemporary American cinema for its engagement of political issues through powerful and often provocative storytelling.

Help us celebrate one of the most awarded and controversial screenwriters working in movies today, on the heels of his upcoming film Snowden, which opens in September and features Joseph Gordon-Levitt as the CIA employee who leaked thousands of classified documents to the press.




Presented by Bennett Miller

Director Bennett Miller was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Director for both Capote (2005), starring Philip Seymour Hoffman, and Foxcatcher (2014), starring Steve Carell. Bennett’s 2011 film Moneyball garnered six Oscar nominations, including Best Picture. His new film version of A Christmas Carol, adapted by playwright Tom Stoppard, is currently in production.


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Some of today's most gifted cinematic storytellers work outside of scripted characters and plots. We honor these non-fiction filmmakers with our Special Achievement in Documentary Storytelling award. When it comes to imagination, scope, and heart, these directors more than equal their "fiction" colleagues. The greatest filmmakers in the non-fiction realm strive for a discerning fidelity to reality while simultaneously staying true to their instincts as a storyteller. What emerge are works that audiences will continue to cherish for decades to come.



Documentary filmmakers Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady of Loki Films are justly celebrated for their clear-eyed cinematic approach to delicate subjects.

Their film Jesus Camp, an intimate look at an intense training ground designed to shape Evangelical children into political “soldiers in the army of God,” was nominated for an Academy Award®. Ewing and Grady’s The Boys of Baraka, about 12-year-old African-American boys from Baltimore sent to a boarding school in Kenya, screened at the Nantucket Film Festival. Other films include 12th & Delaware and The Education of Mohammad Hussein, both of which aired on HBO, and Detropia, an arresting exploration of Detroit.

Their latest work, Norman Lear: Just Another Version of You, premiered at the Sundance Film Festival as an opening night selection and will be released nationwide this month. The film focuses on Norman Lear, the writer, producer, and creator of such seminal television shows as All in the Family, Maude, The Jeffersons, One Day at a Time, and Sanford and Son. Television sitcoms were an unlikely catalyst for social change until Lear came along and combined humor with subtle-yet-sharp political commentary.

Ewing and Grady pay fitting tribute to the man and his legacy, and they are sure to continue to provide us with intimate portraits and thought-filled stories. We’re excited to see where they’ll take us next.


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Every once in a while, a writer bursts onto the independent film scene, making noise with a combination of an already recognizable style and a compelling yet fresh take on a genre or tried-and-true narrative. Since 2010, we've been shining the spotlight on these exciting new talents with our New Voices in Screenwriting award. These screenwriters think outside the box and still manage to engage audiences, critics, and the industry alike. We hope you take notice of these great filmmakers with us, and eagerly await what they come up with next.


2016 Honors: SIÂN HEDER

This year’s New Voices in Screenwriting honor goes to Siân Heder, best known as a writer and producer on Orange Is the New Black, the acclaimed Netflix series for which she has received three WGA nominations. Siân is also the winner of a Peabody Award for her work as a part of the writing team of Men of a Certain Age.

In addition to her work in television, Siân’s feature film debut, Tallulah, starring Ellen Page and Allison Janney, was developed at the Nantucket Screenwriters Colony and premiered in competition at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival. She has also made two short films Dog Eat Dog, featuring Philip Baker Hall and Zachary Quinto, which premiered at the Los Angeles Film Festival, and Mother, which received top honors at the Cannes Film Festival.

Siân’s distinctive voice and thoughtful and incisive characters are dynamic and are a part of what makes OITNB must-watch television. With this in mind, we are thrilled to have Siân here on Nantucket to celebrate her exciting work in television and film.

Presented by Zachary Quinto

Zachary Quinto is a celebrated actor in film, television, and theater, as well as a film producer through Before The Door Pictures. He will reprise his role as Spock in the third installment of the Star Trek franchise and portrays Glenn Greenwald in the upcoming Snowden, by Oliver Stone. Notable past work includes Margin Call, Heroes, and American Horror Story

Award presented with support from:  

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