2015 Award Winners Announced!!

2015 Award Winners Announced!!

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Audience Awards:

Feature Narrative

The Answer

Pavan Kaul

’The Answer’ tells the powerful true story of an American, James Donald Walters and his quest for truth. The film travels through his life, where in his search he meets Paramhansa Yogananda, the great Indian Master, author of ‘Autobiography of a Yogi’. The film shows how this extraordinary meeting changes Walters’ life and his amazing spiritual journey begins. http://www.movietheanswer.com
Feature Documentary

Right Footed

Nick Spark02_rightfoot

Born without arms as the result of a severe birth defect, Jessica Cox never allowed herself to believe that she couldn’t accomplish her dreams. An expert martial artist, college graduate and motivational speaker, Jessica is also the world’s only armless airplane pilot, a mentor, and an advocate for people with disabilities. Directed by Emmy Award winning filmmaker Nick Spark, Right Footed chronicles Jessica’s amazing story of overcoming adversity and follows her over a period of two years as she becomes a mentor for children with disabilities and their families, and a disability rights advocate working in the U.S.A. and abroad www.rightfootedmovie.com
Short Documentary


Jennifer Batchelder and Susan Carol Davis 03_re

Indonesian Retno Hapsari dedicates herself to improving the lives of families living at Jakarta’s Cirendeu open garbage dump. Retno refuses to ignore the social and environmental destruction caused by what we throw away. Her non-profit organization, XSProject, buys trash from the Cirendeu trash pickers then makes new products from the trash to sell. With sales proceeds and donations, XSProject pays for the education and medical needs of the trash picker’s children in the ever expansive trash picker community.
Short Narrative

Sin Frontera

Iz Gutierrez04_Sin

Inspired by true events, Monica and Gabriel are a couple struggling to survive both a decaying relationship and a broken immigration system after a deportation tears them apart. While Gabriel is stuck in a dangerous city, they both remember how they fell in love and make a vow to rekindle their romance in order to prevail and reunite through an unconventional method. Love will transcend any boundary.www.SinFronteraMovie.com

Student Narrative Film

On a Knife

Tamas Tatai05_onaknife

Excited about her upcoming holiday, Laura is walking home from university when she witnesses the stabbing of her teenage brother. Jake, a celebrated member of the youth football team, is taken away by paramedics as they fight to save his life. Laura’s life has turned up side down as Jake lies unconscious on a hospital bed. Laura, her Mother and Father can hardly cope with the trauma. Laura’s dark days become unbearable not knowing if Jake will ever wake up.
Student Documantary

Prayers Project

Hannah Nicole Duran06_homeless

A few friends come together with one great idea to help those in need with the help of their friends from their local church. With many donations, they create care packages that they give out to random homeless people they find on the streets of Hollywood, California. Knowing the risks of what their doing, they decide to document their journey out of their comfort zone to help those in need pray and know that they are prayed for. The journey is a true documentary that was filmed with the intention of inspiring other people to get out of their comfort zone and do something amazing!

Look At Me
: Celebrating The Authentic You

Nik Gravelle07_look

Look at Me was a stage piece originally created in 2009, to elevate social awareness of the unrealistic body image expectations placed on us by societal pressures and media. Now, eight years later MusEffect has developed this beautiful piece of choreography into an epic full length Public Service Announcement filmed in the heart of Los Angeles encouraging audiences to ‘Celebrate the Authentic You.’ Teaming up with dancers across the globe, and some of today’s top social activists in the Entertainment field, MusEffect and these advocates alike deliver a message that is not only informative, but equally designed to ignite a passion towards change. It is MusEffect’s unique vehicle of raising social consciousness through dance, spoken word and film that leaves audiences craving a social remedy. “Look at Me, you’re beautiful, Look at Me.”
Music Video

Laid to Rest

Nick Britton and Ross Metcalf08_Laid

This song is written for the screams and cries of the children around the world that go unheard. It is made in the hope that we can give them a voice! I hope that I am able to shed some form of light onto a global epidemic of numbness.

Grand Jury Awards:

Feature Narrative

The Boatman

Greg Morgan09_boadman

On the border of the US and Mexico, there are whispers of a ‘Coyote.’ A man so adept at sneaking immigrants across, none of his ‘mojados,’ his people, have ever been caught. Despite this perfect record, Miguel is no stranger to death. His nickname, ‘El Maldito’ hints of what we will soon see for ourselves, for Miguel seems haunted by the dead and dying. He comes upon them on desert roads; he hears their confessions, and takes part in their dying wishes. He searches to find the answers to why this is happening to him. With the wind comes young Elena into his life and claims to be his daughter, El Maldito is then forced to confront his many demons.
Feature Documentary

Daylight Come

Evan Vetter10_daylight

Following decades of war in the Democratic Republic of Congo, two American women struggle to help a group of Congolese women rebuild their lives amidst the scars of sexual violence and poverty. As their Western ideas create new challenges, Daylight Come begs the question: in the face of tremendous suffering, can one person really make a difference? Offering a new voice in the story being told about Congo, Daylight Come reveals hope can still be found no matter how long the night.
Short Documentary

A Certain Kind
of Light

Brandon Vedder

A Certain Kind of Light” serves as a portrait of a sage like 93-year old man named, Wilber “Wil” Alexander who has sat at the bedside of the sick & the dying for the last 40 years. Using a method he calls, Whole Person Care, he invites the wounded to tell their stories as he walks alongside them and aiding in their search for meaning. He uniquely cares for sick, wounded & terminal patients without the modern technology, believing there is invaluable meaning and purpose in both, the illness and the experience of recovery. Wil’s own health wains in a way that has him confronting his own mortality and all the while his peers work to capture & codify his methods in a way that can be taught to young physicians.
Short Narrative

Sin Frontera

Iz Gutierrez04_Sin

Inspired by true events, Monica and Gabriel are a couple struggling to survive both a decaying relationship and a broken immigration system after a deportation tears them apart. While Gabriel is stuck in a dangerous city, they both remember how they fell in love and make a vow to rekindle their romance in order to prevail and reunite through an unconventional method. Love will transcend any boundary.
Student Narrative Film

Killing My

Details coming soon
Student Documantary


Darlien Morales11_Bneath

The island of Culebra, located off the coast of Puerto Rico, is one of the richest ecosystems in the Caribbean. Abundant mangroves, coral reefs and world renowned beaches, like Flamenco Beach, attract tourists from all over. Today, active munitions from WW2 pose a threat to people, wildlife, and the environment. Activists, fishermen, professors, and military personnel aim to prevent further irreparable damage to Culebra’s coral reefs.

953K: Inspiring
Action Against

Nik Gravelle and Jessica Starr12_953k

Milenials place every ounce of acceptance and self-worth on interaction with their peers on social media.The power of Cyberbullying is often ignored and underestimated, this poignant Public Service Announcement touches on this subject whose pain is all too familiar in today’s society. LA based non- profit dance company MusEffect and Muse Media created this PSA, 953K with the intention of raising social awareness of Cyberbullying.
Music Video

Where Has
Love Gone?

Gary Voelker13_where

Recently, there has been a growing movement in America to raise awareness about the horrific epidemic of human trafficking – specificaly, criminal sexual exploitation of children. .An overwhelming majority of the victims of human slavery are children between the ages of 12 and 17 years old. Once a child is sold, the average lifespan of each victim is just 2-4 years. These children are threatened, beaten, raped, drugged, and sold. It is truly a hopeless situation with seemingly no escape.
Pioner Award

A Ferguson

Lonnie Edwards14_ferguson

An avant-garde retrospective on the alarming rise of police aggression which lead to the tragic events of Ferguson. A film solely narrated through soundbites and music, “A Ferguson Story” uses footage from various amateur photographers and videographers to capture the amalgamation of society. http://afergusonstory.com/

Screenplay Awards:

1st Place


by Susan Polk

2nd Place


by Gregory P. Wolk

3rd Place


by Jonathan LaPoma) & Natalia Porras