Sudbury annual film festival introducing feature film awards with cash prizes

Canadian $100 dollars bills are seen in this file photo.

The annual Cinefest Sudbury International Film Festival is returning for its 33rd year and is introducing a new feature film awards program with cash prizes.

"Films selected as part of Cinefest's lineup that meet the eligibility criteria for an award will be considered by a jury of film industry delegates in a number of new awards categories," officials said in a news release Thursday.

A total of $32,500 in prizes will be given out:

  • $15,000 for the Outstanding Canadian Feature Film Award
  • $10,000 for the Outstanding International Feature Film Award
  • $2,500 for the Outstanding Female-Led Feature Film Award
  • $2,500 for the Cinema Indigenized Outstanding Talent Award
  • $2,500 for the French Language Feature Film Award

"We are thrilled to offer this enhanced recognition of the incredible films submitted to Cinefest Sudbury each year," Tammy Frick, the festival's executive director, said. "Highlighting the formidable success stories in Canadian and international filmmaking has always been a key priority to Cinefest, and this expanded awards program will help to further promote the exceptional films being created and diverse stories being told worldwide."

The usual three audience choice awards will also be given out for the best feature film, documentary and video short.

With the success of last year's format that featured both in-theatre and virtual screenings along with the current easing of COVID-19 restrictions, the hybrid model is returning to allow for greater access.

The films have not yet been announced, but the festival will happen in the Nickel City from Sept. 18 – 26. Officials will announce this year's lineup on Aug. 26.