Awards and Accolades

Here is a partial list of awards bestowed upon Independent Lens films over the years:

Academy Award Nominations

The Invisible War by Kirby Dick — Best Documentary (2013)

How to Survive a Plague by David France — Best Documentary (2013)

Hell and Back Again by Danfung Dennis — Best Documentary (2012)

Waste Land by Lucy Walker — Best Documentary (2011)

Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room by Alex Gibney — Best Documentary (2006)

The Weather Underground by Sam Green and Bill Siegel — Best Documentary (2004)

Why Can’t We Be a Family Again? by Roger Weisberg and Murray Nossel — Best Documentary Short (2002)

Emmy Awards Received

Medora – Outstanding Business and Economic Reporting Long Form

The Trials of Muhammad Ali – Outstanding Historical Documentary – Long Form

The Invisible War by Kirby Dick — Best Documentary of 2014; and Outstanding Investigative Journalism – Long Form (2014)

Detropia by Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady — Outstanding Editing: Documentary and Long Form (2014)

Desert of Forbidden Art by by Amanda Pope & Tchavdar Georgiev — Outstanding Individual Achievement in a Craft: Music & Sound (2012)

The Woodmans by C. Scott Willis — Outstanding Arts & Culture Programming (2012)

Have You Heard From Johannesburg by Connie Field — Primetime Emmy Award for Special Merit in Nonfiction Film

Art & Copy by Doug Pray — Outstanding Arts and Culture Programming Emmy Award (2011)

Billy Strayhorn: Lush Life by Robert Levi — Best Documentary (2008)

A Lion in the House by Julia Reichert and Steve Bognar — Primetime Emmy, Exceptional Merit in Nonfiction Filmmaking (2007)

A Lion’s Trail by Francois Verster, Mark J. Kaplan, and Dan Jawitz — Outstanding Cultural and Artistic Programming (2006)

Be Good, Smile Pretty by Tracy Droz Tragos — Best Documentary (2004)

Sing Faster: The Stagehands’ Ring Cycle by Jon Else — Best Documentary (2000)

George Foster Peabody Award

India’s Daughter by Leslee Udwin (2015)

Brakeless by Kyoko Miyake (2014)

The House I Live In by Eugene Jarecki (2013)

How to Survive a Plague by David France (2013)

The Invisible War by Kirby Dick (2013)

Summer Pasture by Lynn True and Nelson Walker (2012)

Park Avenue by Alex Gibney (2012) (won as part of the Why Poverty? series).

Solar Mamas by Mona Eldaief and Jehane Noujaim (2012) (won as part of the Why Poverty? series).

Bhutto by Duane Baughman (2011)

Reel Injun: On the Trail of the Hollywood Indian by Neil Diamond (2010)

Between the Folds by Vanessa Gould (2009)

The Order of Myths by Margaret Brown (2009)

King Corn by Aaron Woolf, Curt Ellis, and Ian Cheney (2008)

Mapping Stem Cell Research: Terra Incognita by Maria Finitzo (2008)

Sisters in Law by Kim Longinotto and Florence Ayisi (2007)

Billy Strayhorn: Lush Life by Robert Levi (2007)

Still Life with Animated Dogs by Paul Fierlinger (2001)

duPont-Columbia Awards

The Revisionaries by Scott Thurman (2013)

Ai Wei Wei: Never Sorry by Alison Klayman (2013)

Hell and Back Again by Danfung Dennis (2012)

Abduction: The Megumi Yokota Story by Chris Sheridan and Patty Kim (2008)

Seoul Train by Jim Butterworth and Lisa Sleeth (2006)

International Documentary Association (IDA) Awards

IDA laurels best curated series 2015Winner of the 2013, 2014, and 2015 IDA Award for Best Continuing Series

(T)ERROR — Emerging Documentary Filmmaker (2015)

Best of Enemies — IDA/ABC News VideoSource Award & IDA Best Music Award (2015)

1971 — IDA/ABC News VideoSource Award (2014)

Limited Partnership — IDA Humanitas Award (2014)

Blood Brother — IDA Humanitas Award (2013)

Let the Fire Burn — IDA Best Editing (2013)

The Trials of Muhammad Ali — IDA ABCNews Videosource Award (2013)

For Once in My Life — IDA Music Documentary Award (2011)

Bhutto — IDA/ABC News Videosource Award (2011)

Have You Heard From Johannesburg? — Limited Series Award (2010)

Waste Land — IDA Pare Larentz Award (2010)

Waste Land — Best Documentary Award (2010)

Marwencol — Jacqueline Donnet Emerging Filmmaker Award for Director Jeff Malmberg (2010)

Garbage Dreams — IDA Humanitas Award (2009)

Young@Heart — IDA Music Documentary Award (2008)

A Son’s Sacrifice — Short Documentaries (2007)

The New Americans — Limited Series Award (2003)

Imelda — IDA/ABC News Video Source Award (2003)

CINE Golden Eagle Award

The Desert of Forbidden Art by Amanda Pope and Tchavdar Georgiev (2010)

Our Disappeared/Nuestros Desaparecidos by Juan Mandelbaum (2008)

Race to Execution by Rachel Lyon and Jim Lopes (2008)

The Paper by Aaron Matthews (2008)

Mirror Dance by Frances McElroy and Maria T. Rodriguez (2005)

Be Good, Smile Pretty by Tracy Droz Tragos (2004)

Sundance Film Festival Awards

Trapped by Dawn Porter – Special Jury Award – Social Impact Filmmaking

Rich Hill by Tracy Droz Tragos & Andrew Droz Palermo – Grand Jury Documentary Prize

Happiness by Thomas Balmès — World Cinema Documentary Cinematography (2014)

Blood Brother by Steve Hoover — Audience Award (2013)

Blood Brother by Steve Hoover — Grand Jury Prize (2013)

The House I Live In by Eugene Jarecki — Grand Jury Prize (2012)

The Invisible War by Kirby Dick and Amy Ziering — Audience Award (2012)

Love Free or Die by Macky Alston — Special Jury Prize (2012)

Detropia by Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady — Best Editing (2012)

A Film Unfinished by Yael Hersonski — World Cinema Documentary Editing Award (2010)

Waste Land by Lucy Walker — World Cinema Audience Award: Documentary (2010)

Brother to Brother by Rodney Evans — Special Jury Prize, Drama (2004)

Imelda by Ramona Diaz, Cinematographer: Ferne Pearlstein — Excellence in Cinematography Award, Documentary (2004)

Sing Faster: The Stagehands’ Ring Cycle by Jon Else — Filmmaker’s Trophy (1999)

Independent Spirit Award

The Invisible War by Kirby Dick — Best Documentary (2013)

The Waiting Room by Peter Nicks – Truer than Fiction Award (2013)

(T)ERROR and Best of Enemies — Best Documentary [nominated, 2016]

SXSW Film Festival

The Great Invisible by Margaret Brown, Grand Jury Documentary Prize

Slamdance Film Festival

Abduction: The Megumi Yokota Story by Chris Sheridan and Patty Kim — Audience Award (2006)

The Real Dirt on Farmer John by Taggart Siegel and Teri Lang — Audience Sparky Award, Best Documentary (2005)

Al Gore Reel Current Awards

Garbage Dreams by Mai Iskander (2009)

The Real Dirt on Farmer John by Taggart Siegel and Teri Lang (2005)

GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defmation) Media Awards

Ask Not by Johnny Symons (2010)

How to Survive a Plague by David France (2013)

Grierson British Documentary Award

Hell and Back Again by Danfung Dennis (2012)

The House I Live In by Eugene Jarecki (2013)

Cinema Eye Awards

Let The Fire Burn by Jason Osder — Outstanding Achievement in Editing (2014)

Detropia by Heidi Ewing & Rachel Grady — Outstanding Direction for duo, and Outstanding Original Score (2013)

Directors Guild Award Nominations

The Invisible War by Kirby Dick — Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Documentary (2012)

Ai Wei Wei: Never Sorry by Alison Klayman (2013) — Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Documentary (2012)

Japan Prize Award Received

Deaf Jam by Judy Lieff — Best Work of the Youth Category (2012)

NAACP Image Award

Through a Lens Darkly by Thomas A. Harris – Best Documentary

Here’s what the press has to say about the series:

  • Independent Lens is public television’s equivalent of This American Life, a completely freeform program with no apparent rules for what passes. Lens airs a decidedly brilliant mix of drama, documentary, even comedy, and provides an imaginative array of unusual, unknown, and immensely engaging stories.” —Paste Magazine
  • “Watching Independent Lens … is like going into an independent bookstore — you don’t always find what you were looking for but you often find something you didn’t even know you wanted.” —The New Yorker
  • “The greatest showcase of independent film on TV today.” —The Kansas City Star
  • “Entertaining as hell and better than any other documentary series around.” —Television Week
  • “Warm, offbeat surprises are in store for those who tune in to this PBS series.” —The Hollywood Reporter

Webby Awards

Independent Lens Website — 2016 Nominee — Websites: Movies & Film

Independent Lens Website — 2012 Honoree

I Identify — 2016 Honoree — Online Film & Video: Public Service & Activism

After the Storm — 2016 Nominee — Online Film & Video: Art & Experimental