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Film-makers shortlisted for prestigious Awards

Date: 20/09/2016


Twenty-five films that cover stories from across the world have been shortlisted across five categories in the Arts and Humanities Research Council’s1 2016 Research in Film Awards.

Hundreds of films were submitted for the Awards this year and the overall winner for each category, who will receive £2,000 towards their film-making, will be announced at an awards ceremony at BAFTA in London on the 10 November.

Films that have made the shortlist cover a wide range of topical subjects ranging from landscape and environmental change to capital punishment, people trafficking, and poverty. All of the films are rooted in arts and humanities research and use poetry, art and drama to explore these issues.

Launched in 2015 the Research in Film Awards celebrate short films, up to 30 minutes long, that have been made about the arts and humanities and their influence on our lives.

There are five categories for the Awards with four of them aimed at the research community and one open to the public. The five shortlisted films in each category are:

Doctoral Award (Best film by and Arts and Humanities Research Council funded Doctoral student)

West of Dalabrog
Susannah Ramsay, University of Stirling

Barnaby's Pipes
Graham Kyle Riach, University of Cambridge

The Caterthuns
Kieran Baxter, University of Dundee

Valentina Bonizzi, University of Dundee

Isabel Rocamora, University of Edinburgh

Innovation Award

My Private Life II
Dr Jill Daniels, University of East London

They Call Us Maids - The Domestic Workers' Story
Leeds Animation Workshop and Amy Charlesworth, the Open University

160 Characters
Victoria Mapplebeck, Royal Holloway, University of London

Village Tales
Sue Sudbury, Bournemouth University

The Return
Colin Andrews, Edinburgh Napier University

Utopia Award: Imagining Our Futures

Wonderland: the art of becoming human
Amanda Ravetz, Manchester Metropolitan University

Spiritual Flavours
Laura Cuch, University College London

At the Edge of the Present
Roman Gerodimos, Bournemouth University

Chasing the China Wind: A Musical Journey
Chen-Yu Lin, University of Liverpool

Sara Penrhyn Jones, Bath Spa University

Inspiration Award (public category)

Lunch with Family
Romana Turina

After Auschwitz
Paul Blinkhorn

The Ballad of Johnny Walford
Nathan Hughes

Poverty: Our Hidden Shame?
Moya Crowley, Plantation Productions (charity)

AWA: Zimbabwe’s Rap Queen
Max Thurlow

Best Research Film of the Year

You Can't Move History
Pollyanna Ruiz, University of Sussex

People Like Us
Tina Gharavi, Newcastle University

Anatomy of a Murder - Sirhan Sirhan and Robert Kennedy
Shane O'Sullivan, Kingston University

The Crossing
Shreepali Patel, Cambridge School of Art, Anglia Ruskin University

Sara Penrhyn Jones, Bath Spa University

Jan Dalley, Arts Editor of the Financial Times and Chair of the Judging Panel, said: “The quality of the shortlisted films demonstrates the huge potential of using film as way to communicate and engage people with academic research.

“I’ve been really impressed by the care and skill that the film-makers have taken to use compelling stories to bring the research alive. Film-making is an increasingly important way of capturing the huge range of arts and humanities research that plays such a pivotal role in helping us to understand the world we live in today.”

A panel of expert judges2 watched the longlisted films in each category to select the shortlist and ultimately the winner; key criteria included looking at how the film makers had come up with creative ways, either factual or fictional, of storytelling on camera, that capture the importance of arts and humanities research to all of our lives.

Judges for the 2016 Research in Film Awards include, Professor Tom Inns, Director of the Glasgow School of Art; writer, broadcaster and film critic, Danny Leigh; and Matthew Reisz of the Times Higher Education magazine.

The winning films will be shared on the Arts and Humanities Research Council website and YouTube channel. On the 10 November you’ll be able to follow the fortunes of the shortlisted films on twitter via the hashtag #RIFA2016.


For further press information and images please contact:
Emi Spinner, Multi-Media Editor, Arts and Humanities Research Council, on 01793 416020 or e.spinner@ahrc.ac.uk

AHRC Communications team – communications@ahrc.ac.uk or 01793 416000

Notes to editors

  1. The Arts and Humanities Research Council funds world-class, independent researchers in a wide range of subjects: history, archaeology, digital content, philosophy, languages, design, heritage, area studies, the creative and performing arts, and much more. This financial year the AHRC will spend approximately £98 million to fund research and postgraduate training in collaboration with a number of partners. The quality and range of research supported by this investment of public funds not only provides social and cultural benefits and contributes to the economic success of the UK but also to the culture and welfare of societies around the globe. For more information visit: www.ahrc.ac.uk or follow @ahrcpress on twitter.
  2. The Judging panel consists of the following film industry and academic experts:
    • Jan Dalley, Culture Editor of the Financial Times and AHRC Council member
    • Danny Leigh, Writer, broadcaster and presenter
    • Matthew Reisz, Times Higher
    • Professor Tom Inns, Director of Glasgow School of Art
    • Anthony Lilley, CEO, Magic Lantern Productions
    • Joanna Callaghan, University of Sussex
    • Professor Rajinder Dudrah, University of Birmingham
    • Professor Mark Jancovich,University of East Anglia
    • Professor Stella Bruzzi University of Warwick
    • Professor Lucy Mazdon University of Southampton
    • Dr Shohini Chaudhuri, University of Essex
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