Cinetopia 2018: Audience and director's award winners announced

Winners include audience favorites 'Love, Gilda' and 'Woman Walks Ahead'

The audience claps after a screening at the Cinetopia Film Festival. (Credit: Cinetopia)
The audience claps after a screening at the Cinetopia Film Festival. (Credit: Cinetopia)

ANN ARBOR – The 2018 Cinetopia Film Festival may have concluded, but the news around the festival is far from over. After screening more than 50 films at many locations between Ann Arbor and Detroit, the festival has just announced the winners of its audience and director awards in several different categories. According to the festival, attendees were able to cast a ballot after each screening for their favorite film to participate in the audience awards, and the Cinetopia Leadership team determined the selections for the director’s awards after careful considerations. The following winners truly encompass Cinetopia’s focus on presenting the best independent films from around the world.

Audience Award Winners

"Woman Walks Ahead" -- U.S. Narrative

From director Susanna White ("Our Kind of Traitor") and Steven Knight (Oscar-nominated writer of "Dirty Pretty Things" and "Eastern Promises") comes the true story of Catherine Weldon, an artist who, in 1889, traveled from New York City to the Dakota Territory to meet Hunkpapa Lakota legend Sitting Bull. There she becomes an advocate for Native American rights and Sitting Bull's confidante. 

"Love, Gilda" -- U.S. Documentary

In "Love, Gilda," director Lisa D’Apolito uses rare personal recordings and journal entries to tell Gilda Radner’s story in her own words. Along the way, friends and admirers, including Amy Poehler, Cecily Strong, Lorne Michaels and a host of others, offer their most cherished memories of this brilliant trailblazer. 

"Supa Modo" -- Foreign Narrative

Directed by first-time feature filmmaker Likarion Wainaina, "Supa Modo" focuses on 9-year-old Jo, who dreams of being a superhero, but time is not on her side. When the doctors reveal that she is terminally ill, Jo leaves the hospital and returns home. While her mom insists that she rest, her sister has different plans. With the entire village's support, they decide to make dreams a reality and turn Jo into the superhero they know she is.