2016 Award Winners

awards2016web_bestofshowBest of Show $5000

Made possible by Brooks Resources

To Keep the Light
Directed by Erica Fae



Best Narrative Feature
Camera Rental Package (valued at $60,000)

Made possible by Panavision

First Girl I Loved
Directed by Kerem Sanga

award2016web_documentaryBest Documentary Feature $1,000
Made possible by JL Ward Co. and Business for BendFilm!

Growing Up Coy
Directed by Eric Juhola


awards2016web_directingBest Directing $500
Made possible by Independent WOMEN for Independent Film!

Night School
Directed by Andrew Cohn


*Best Narrative Short $500
Made possible by Independent WOMEN for Independent

A Beautiful Mess
Directed by Shahir Zag


Best Documentary Short $500
Made possible by Independent WOMEN for Independent Film!

Directed by Amy Nicholson


*Best Student Short $500
Made possible since 2005 by Dan and Priscilla Wieden on behalf of Caldera.

Spilt Milk
Directed by James Dunstan

*Best Animated Short

Made possible by Independent WOMEN for Independent Film!

Trial and Error
Directed by Antje Heyn

Best of the Northwest $500.
Made possible by Business for BendFilm

The Child and the Dead
Directed by Marc Ripper & Karina Ripper


Additional awards will be presented in the following categories:


awards2016web_audienceKatie Merritt Audience Award $500

Finding Oscar
Directed by Ryan Suffern



awards2016bestcinematographyBest Cinematography

If There’s a Hell Below
Directed by Nathan Williams





Special Jury Award
Best Actor
Tomas Pais

Special Jury Award
Best Actor
Jane Ackermann
NEPTUNE, Directed Derek Kimball

Special Award for Visual Effects

Directed by Tom Teller

Special Award for Originality of Vision
Mira K. Lippold-Johnson

Special Award for Animation
Directed by Rhiannon Evans


Find Filmmaker Inspiration at this Year’s Fest

We asked festival filmmakers for their favorite questions. Read to discover what they had to say…

Veteran BendFilm attendees know that a unique aspect of the BendFilm Festival is our access to filmmakers. Whether you’re standing in line before a film, grabbing a beer between screenings, or attending a panel or filmmaker Q+A, you’ll have the chance to chat with directors, actors, writers, and producers.

Curious about that person who looks like a filmmaker but could be your neighbor? Look for the orange BendFilm Festival lanyards and feel free to be one of Bend’s friendly ambassadors.

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SPECIAL SCREENING – The Beatles: Eight Days a Week

The closing day of this year’s festival (Sunday, October 9) would have been John Lennon’s 76th birthday and, as a tribute, we’re wrapping up BendFilm with a very special screening of Ron Howard’s THE BEATLES: EIGHT DAYS A WEEK – THE TOURING YEARS.

On February 9, 1964 at 8:12 PM EST, after a brief commercial break, four young men from Liverpool stepped onto the Ed Sullivan stage, changing popular culture forever. Seventy-three million people watched The Beatles perform that night – the largest audience to date in television history. It was an event that united a nation and signaled the birth of a youth culture that is still alive today. While this single performance introduced The Beatles to America, the band had already taken Europe by storm the previous year. What the band did next would introduce them to the entire world, permanently transforming the music industry and forever ingraining them into the fabric of popular culture.

This film is the story of The Beatles’ journey to the top of the world, fueled by their live performances, music, and extraordinary personalities – and how they made the remarkable decision to walk away from touring in 1966 to focus exclusively on writing music and recording it in the studio.

IN THEATERS ONLY: Shea Stadium Concert Film

This documentary feature will be followed by an “in theaters only” 30 minute concert film of The Beatles’ legendary 1965 performance at Shea Stadium, with digitally remastered sound and a restored 4K image.

Reserve Seating for Passholders

As a BendFilm Festival “Special Screening,” festival Passholders are able to reserve their tickets in advance to guarantee a seat.

Enjoy the music, the memories and the film together by reserving your seats here: THE BEATLES

Colleen Dougherty Offers Favorite Moments + Festival Insights


Colleen Dougherty has been a BendFilm friend and supporter from the very early days of the festival. Over the years we have appreciated her sustained enthusiasm and understanding of the role that independent cinema plays in our community. An Advisory Board member, we’re also grateful for Colleen’s assistance on the BendFilm Bash Committee.

We recently caught up with Colleen and asked her to share some of her favorite moments and festival insights. She graciously accepted our invitation.

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BendFilm Opens with Voyagers Without Trace + a special performance by Jenny Conlee of The Decemberists

BendFilm Festival begins with an opening night film that will appeal to all adventurous spirits. BendFilm alumnus and Portland-native Ian McCluskey will open our 13th annual festival with his latest documentary, Voyagers Without Trace. Indie film lovers will also be treated to a special performance by Jenny Conlee of The Decemberists.

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John Sayles & Maggie Renzi Help BendFilm Launch “First Features”

John Sayles and Maggie Renzi

John Sayles, considered  to be one of the godfathers of the US Independent Film Movement, and his creative partner and producer, Maggie Renzi, will be in Bend to help us launch our “First Features” program this October.  “First Features” showcases renowned independent filmmakers, screening the first films that catapulted their careers.

Beloved for films like MATEWAN, EIGHT MEN OUT, CITY OF HOPE, PASSION FISH, LONESTAR and GO FOR SISTERS, the duo have worked together since 1978.

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First Feature Announcement: Tracktown Film Fatales Filmmaker Competing in Olympic Games

“As a film made in Eugene by Eugene filmmakers, we’re thrilled for Tracktown to be the first feature announced for this year’s festival,” said Erik Jambor as he returns to BendFilm as this year’s Festival Programmer. Tracktown, written and directed by Jeremy Teicher and Alexi Pappas, will be shown as a part of the 13th Annual BendFilm Festival, set for Oct. 6-9, 2016.

tracktown film cover

Tracktown’s co-director and lead actress Pappas, the real-life long distance track star and 2016 Olympic competitor, plays the role of Plumb Marigold, a famous but lonely distance runner preparing for the biggest race of her life: The Olympic Trials. When an injury forces her to take an unexpected day off, Plumb wanders into a bakery where the aimless boy behind the counter catches her eye. Alexi Pappas makes her feature film debut alongside a cast of Olympic athletes and beloved actors like Rachel Dratch (SNL) and Andy Buckley (The Office).

As you tune in to the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, be sure to watch for Alexi as she competes for Greece in the 10,000-meter run on August 12 at 11:10am PDT.  Check back here for updates on Alexi’s Olympic races.

Continue reading “First Feature Announcement: Tracktown Film Fatales Filmmaker Competing in Olympic Games”

Catching Up with BendFilm Festival Programmer, Erik Jambor


Earlier this year, we announced Erik Jambor’s return to BendFilm as our Festival Programmer for the 13th Annual BendFilm Festival. In addition to his previous BendFilm role, Erik has run and programmed independent film festivals including his role as cofounder of the Sidewalk Moving Picture Festival in Birmingham Alabama. Most recently he served as Executive Director of Indie Memphis in Memphis, Tennessee from 2008 through early 2015, where he programmed the annual Indie Memphis Film Festival.

We caught up with Erik as we move ever closer to our 13th Annual BendFilm Festival, October 6-9th. Erik was kind enough to give us perspective on film festival programming and a sneak peek into this year’s festival.

Read on for the interview:

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