Belfast Director Michael Lennox won the award for Best Irish Short Film with his work Here’s Looking at You Kid. The film was commended by the jury as 'funny and heartfelt, with an uplifting coda. Natural performances and surrealism made for an effective exploration as to why people would rather hide behind fictional personas than be themselves'.
Michael Lennox is the director behind the phenomenon Derry Girls written by Derry native Lisa McGee. Lennox was the recipient of a BAFTA award and Oscar® nomination for his short film Boogaloo and Graham in 2015.
Special mention in the Irish Short Film category also went to Director Claire Byrne for her short film Sister This and Adam O’Keefe Director of Where Still Waters Lie.
The winner of the Best International Short, Hizia directed by Zariab Chabman, will also qualify for further consideration at the 2022 Academy Awards. Born in Afghanistan, Director Chabname Zariab arrived in France at the age of 7 and has forged a successful career as a short film director. She has been nominated for the French Cesar awards and is currently developing her first feature film. Hizia was praised by the jury as 'a haunting and engaging, an emotional rollercoaster with no heroes or villains just complex characters explored with humanity and nuance'.
Special mention in the International Short Film category went to Crashing from first-time director Alex Salam and Face to Face directed by Javier Marco.
The award for Best Animated Short Film went to Kapaemahu directed by Hinaleimoana Wong-Kalu, Dean Hamer and Joe Wilson. Kapaemahu reveals the healing power of four mysterious stones on Waikiki Beach and the legendary transgender spirits within them. Director Hinaleimoana Wong-Kalu is a Native Hawaiian teacher, cultural practitioner and filmmaker who uses digital media to protect and perpetuate indigenous languages and traditions. Co-directors/producers Dean Hamer and Joe Wilson are Emmy and GLAAD award-winning filmmakers. This is their fifth film with Hina.
The awards, sponsored by City of Derry Crystal, were presented online in the Closing Night screening of Rose Plays Julie. In its virtual format, festival films are available to view up to 7 days after release until 6 December 2020.
Foyle Film Festival is funded by the Department for Communities through Northern Ireland Screen and by Derry City and Strabane District Council. Foyle Film Festival Light in Motion Awards is sponsored by City of Derry Crystal.