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by Peter Knegt
January 8, 2009 8:18 AM
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Cinema Eye Sets Awards Shortlist

The Cinema Eye Honors for Nonfiction Filmmaking has announced its shortlist of 15 leading contenders for the 2009 awards. Cinema Eye launched its annual awards last year with a mandate to "recognize the diversity and excellence in contemporary documentary filmmaking." "The response has been overwhelmingly positive," said Cinema Eye co-chair and filmmaker AJ Schnack in a statement. "Clearly, nonfiction filmmaking has become an essential part of our culture and it deserves special recognition." The final nominees will be announced January 19, 2009.

The following list is of the 15 feature films that have received the highest vote totals across nine categories including: Direction, Production, Cinematography, Editing, Graphic Design and Animation, Debut Feature, International Feature, Outstanding Achievement in Nonfiction Feature Filmmaking, and the newest award - Outstanding Achievement in Original Music Score. There will be a tenth category for Audience Choice.

In alphabetical order, they include:

American Teen - Nanette Burstein, dir

The Betrayal (Nerakhoon) - Ellen Kuras & Thavisouk Phrasavath, dir

Encounters at the End of the World - Werner Herzog, dir

The English Surgeon - Geoffrey Smith, dir

Forbidden Lies - Anna Broinowski, dir

In a Dream - Jeremiah Zagar, dir

Man on Wire - James Marsh, dir

My Winnipeg - Guy Maddin, dir

The Order of Myths - Margaret Brown, dir

Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired - Marina Zenovich, dir

Standard Operating Procedure - Errol Morris, dir

Stranded, I Come From a Plane That Crashed on the Mountains - Gonzalo Arijon, dir

Trouble The Water - Carl Deal & Tia Lessin, dir

Up The Yangtze- Yung Chang, dir

Waltz With Bashir - Ari Folman, dir

Co-chair Thom Powers, Documentary Programmer for the Toronto International Film Festival and curator of New York's Stranger Than Fiction series said in a statement: "It's notable that on this shortlist of 15 films there are only six titles that overlap the Oscar's shortlist of 15 documentaries. I think that speaks to the diversity of voices and opinions in the field."

Nominations for the 2nd Annual Cinema Eye Honors will be announced on January 19, 2009 in Park City during the Sundance Film Festival. The Honors will be presented on March 29, 2009 in New York City.

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