Apollo 11 Tops 2019 Critics’ Choice Documentary Awards

apollo11awards

If you haven’t been keeping up with some of the best non-fiction films to be released this year, this might be a good place to start. The Critics’ Choice Documentary Awards were handed out over the weekend, highlighting some of the noteworthy documentaries that may or may not have a shot at Academy Award nominations next year. (Won’t You Be My Neighbor? won last year and got completely snubbed by the Oscars so who knows.) The big winner this year was Todd Douglas Miller’s Apollo 11, which took home five awards including Best Documentary Feature, Best Editing and Best Score. Peter Jackson won Best Director for his WWI doc They Shall Not Grow Old in a tie with Steven Bognar and Julia Reichert, the duo behind American Factory. Meanwhile Tamara Kotevska and Ljubomir Stefanov won Best First Documentary Feature for their acclaimed film Honeyland. Have you seen any of these films? Do you agree with the results? Check out the full list of nominees and winners after the jump.


BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE
“American Factory” (Netflix)
“Apollo 11” (Neon)
“The Biggest Little Farm” (Neon)
“The Cave” (National Geographic)
“Honeyland” (Neon)
“The Kingmaker” (Showtime)
“Knock Down the House” (Netflix)
“Leaving Neverland” (HBO)
“Maiden” (Sony Pictures Classics)
“One Child Nation” (Amazon Studios)
“They Shall Not Grow Old” (Warner Bros.)

BEST DIRECTOR
Waad Al-Kateab and Edward Watts, For “Sama” (PBS)
Steven Bognar and Julia Reichert, “American Factory” (Netflix) (tie)
John Chester, “The Biggest Little Farm” (Neon)
Feras Fayyad, “The Cave” (National Geographic)
Peter Jackson, “They Shall Not Grow Old” (Warner Bros.) (tie)
Todd Douglas Miller, “Apollo 11” (Neon)
Nanfu Wang and Jialing Zhang, “One Child Nation” (Amazon Studios)

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY
Ben Bernhard and Viktor Kossakovsky, “Aquarela” (Sony Pictures Classics)
John Chester, “The Biggest Little Farm” (Neon)
Fejmi Daut and Samir Ljuma, “Honeyland” (Neon)
Nicholas de Pencier, “Anthropocene: The Human Epoch” (Kino Lorber)
Muhammed Khair Al Shami, Ammar Suleiman, and Mohammad Eyad, “The Cave” (National Geographic)
Richard Ladkani, “Sea of Shadows” (National Geographic)

BEST EDITING
Georg Michael Fischer and Verena Schönauer, “Sea of Shadows” (National Geographic)
Todd Douglas Miller, “Apollo 11” (Neon)
Jabez Olssen, “They Shall Not Grow Old” (Warner Bros.)
Amy Overbeck, “The Biggest Little Farm” (Neon)
Lindsay Utz, “American Factory” (Netflix)
Nanfu Wang, “One Child Nation” (Amazon Studios)

BEST SCORE
Jeff Beal, “The Biggest Little Farm” (Neon)
Matthew Herbert, “The Cave” (National Geographic)
Matt Morton, “Apollo 11” (Neon)
Plan 9, “They Shall Not Grow Old” (Warner Bros.)
H. Scott Salinas, “Sea of Shadows” (National Geographic)
Eicca Toppinen, “Aquarela” (Sony Pictures Classics)

BEST NARRATION
Alicia Vikander, narrator; Jennifer Baichwal, writer, “Anthropocene: The Human Epoch” (Kino Lorber)
John Chester and Molly Chester, narrators; John Chester, writer, “The Biggest Little Farm” (Neon)
Petra Costa, narrator; Petra Costa, Carol Pires, David Barker and Moara Passoni, writers, “The Edge of Democracy” (Netflix)
Chiwetel Ejiofor, narrator; Mark Deeble, writer, “The Elephant Queen” (Apple)
Waad Al-Kateab, narrator-writer, “For Sama” (PBS)
Adam Driver, narrator; Oren Rudavsky and Bob Seidman, writers, “Joseph Pulitzer: Voice of the People” (First Run)
Nanfu Wang, narrator-writer, “One Child Nation” (Amazon Studios)
Bruce Springsteen, narrator-writer, “Western Stars” (Warner Bros.)

BEST FIRST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE
Midge Costin, “Making Waves: The Art of Cinematic Sound” (Matson Films)
A.J. Eaton, “David Crosby: Remember My Name” (Sony Pictures Classics)
Pamela B. Green, “Be Natural: The Untold Story of Alice Guy-Blaché” (Kino Lorber/Zeitgeist Films)
Tamara Kotevska and Ljubomir Stefanov, “Honeyland” (Neon)
Richard Miron, “For the Birds” (Dogwoof)
Garret Price, “Love, Antosha” (Lurker Films)

BEST ARCHIVAL DOCUMENTARY
“Amazing Grace” (Neon)
“Apollo 11” (Neon)
“Maiden” (Sony Pictures Classics)
“Mike Wallace is Here” (Magnolia)
“Pavarotti” (CBS Films)
“Rolling Thunder Revue: A Bob Dylan Story by Martin Scorsese” (Netflix)
“They Shall Not Grow Old” (Warner Bros.)
“What’s My Name: Muhammad Ali” (HBO)

BEST BIOGRAPHICAL DOCUMENTARY
“David Crosby: Remember My Name” (Sony Pictures Classics)
“The Kingmaker” (Showtime)
“Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice” (Greenwich)
“Love, Antosha” (Lurker Films)
“Mike Wallace is Here” (Magnolia)
“Pavarotti” (CBS Films)
“Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am” (Magnolia)

BEST MUSIC DOCUMENTARY
“Amazing Grace” (Neon)
“David Crosby: Remember My Name” (Sony Pictures Classics)
“Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice” (Greenwich)
“Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool” (Abramorama)
“Pavarotti” (CBS Films)
“Rolling Thunder Revue: A Bob Dylan Story by Martin Scorsese” (Netflix)
“Western Stars” (Warner Bros.)

BEST POLITICAL DOCUMENTARY
“American Factory” (Netflix)
“The Edge of Democracy” (Netflix)
“Hail Satan?” (Magnolia)
“The Kingmaker” (Showtime)
“Knock Down the House” (Netflix)
“One Child Nation” (Amazon Studios)

BEST SCIENCE/NATURE DOCUMENTARY
“Anthropocene: The Human Epoch” (Kino Lorber)
“Apollo 11” (Neon)
“Aquarela” (Sony Pictures Classic)
“The Biggest Little Farm” (Neon)
“The Elephant Queen” (Apple)
“Honeyland” (Neon)
“Penguins” (Disney)
“Sea of Shadows” (National Geographic)

BEST SPORTS DOCUMENTARY
“Bethany Hamilton: Unstoppable” (Entertainment Studios)
“Diego Maradona” (HBO)
“Maiden” (Sony Pictures Classics)
“Rodman: For Better or Worse” (ESPN)
“The Spy Behind Home Plate” (Ciesla Foundation)
“What’s My Name: Muhammad Ali” (HBO)

MOST INNOVATIVE DOCUMENTARY
“Aquarela” (Sony Pictures Classics)
“Cold Case Hammarskjöld” (Magnolia)
“Rolling Thunder Revue: A Bob Dylan Story by Martin Scorsese” (Netflix)
“Screwball” (Greenwich)
“Serendipity” (Cohen Media)
“They Shall Not Grow Old” (Warner Bros.)

BEST SHORT DOCUMENTARY
“The Chapel at the Border” (Atlantic Documentaries) (Director and Producer: Jeremy Raff)
“Death Row Doctor” (The New York Times Op-Docs) (Director: Lauren Knapp)
“In the Absence (Field of Vision)” (Director: Yi Seung-Jun. Producer: Gary Byung-Seok Kam)
“Lost World” (Director and Producer: Kalyanee Mam. Producers: Adam Loften and Emmanuel Vaughan-Lee)
“Mack Wrestles” (ESPN) (Directors and Producers: Taylor Hess and Erin Sanger. Producers: Erin Leyden and Gentry Kirby)
“Period. End of Sentence.” (Netflix) (Director: Rayka Zehtabchi. Producers: Melissa Berton, Garrett K. Schiff and Lisa Taback)
“The Polaroid Job” (The New York Times Op-Docs) (Director: Mike Plante)
“Sam and the Plant Next Door” (The Guardian) (Director and Producer: Ömer Sami)
“The Unconditional” (Director and Producer: Dave Adams. Producers: Adam Soltis, Renee Woodruff Adams, Josie Swantek Heitz, and Chris Tuss)
“The Waiting Room” (The Guardian) (Director and Producer: Victoria Mapplebeck)

MOST COMPELLING LIVING SUBJECTS OF A DOCUMENTARY (non-competitive category)
Dr. Amani Ballor – “The Cave” (National Geographic)
David Crosby – “David Crosby: Remember My Name” (Sony Pictures Classics)
Tracy Edwards – “Maiden” (Sony Pictures Classics)
Imelda Marcos – “The Kingmaker” (Showtime)
Hatidze Muratova – “Honeyland” (Neon)
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Amy Vilela, Cori Bush, and Paula Jean Swearengin – “Knock Down the House” (Netflix)
Linda Ronstadt – “Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice” (Greenwich)
Dr. Ruth Westheimer – “Ask Dr. Ruth” (Hulu)

D.A. PENNEBAKER AWARD
Frederick Wiseman

LANDMARK AWARD
Michael Apted for the “Up” series

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  • Jake

    Do you know if Apollo 11 and We Will Not Grow Old are eligible for the Oscars? I remember Grizzly Man being disqualified because Herzog didn’t shoot the majority of the footage and fear it will be the same with these two. It would be a shame for them not to be nominated.

  • TimC

    That would be a shame. Maybe there should be a “documentary editing” category.

  • Amy won in 2016 so maybe they eased in this issue.

  • Sean

    They Shall Not Grow Old might have been up for last year’s Oscars already. I seem to remember it doing a small qualifying run in December.

    I’m not sure if that rule is actually true about the director having to shoot the majority of the footage. I do remember hearing it with Grizzly Man but it may have just been speculation. Looking back for any articles about it, everyone just seems to say it was snubbed.