Kani Lapuerta’s ‘Niñxs’ Wins IDFA Forum Award for Best Pitch

Kani Lapuerta’s project “Niñxs” won the IDFA Forum Award for Best Pitch on Wednesday at the 35th edition of the Amsterdam-based documentary festival.

Produced by Mexico’s La Sandía Digital Producción Audiovisual and Germany’s Jyoti Film and Dirk Manthey Film, the film is about Mati, a 14 year-old trans girl who lives in Tepoztlán, Mexico, and faces a binary society that tries to fit them into one gender.

More from Variety

“The award goes to a project with a very strong and compelling character while bringing up a universal and timely theme,” jurors Gugi Gumilang, Marieke van den Bersselaar and Natalia Libet said. “The jury values the sincere and close connection between the protagonist and filmmaker and the witty tone of the trailer.”

Produced by Anke Peterson and Dirk Manthey, “Ninxs” is currently being edited, but Lapuerta said that he has a few more shooting days left in the schedule. He plans to complete the docu in one year.

Lapuerta said that garnering the best pitch kudo will help to further his career.

“This award helps me make my next film,” he said. “We learned so much by being in the Forum because we met so many people from so many different countries. It was very nourishing.”

Alison O’Daniel’s “The Tuba Thieves” took home the IDFA Forum Award for Best Rough Cut.

Produced by Alison O’Daniel and executive produced by Wendy Ettinger (U.S.) the film’s logline reads: “From 2011-2013 tubas were stolen from Los Angeles high schools. The Tuba Thieves is not about thieves or missing tubas. Instead, it asks what it means to listen.”

“This project the jury has chosen makes viewers aware of sound in an engaging and unique way,” the jurors said. “We are looking forward to watching the 90-minute cut soon.”

Finally, the DocLab Forum Award went to Omoregie Osakpolor’s “We Speak Their Names in Hushed Tones.”

The project is a 6DoF installation that explores the psychological effects of irregular migrations from Benin City, Nigeria.

Produced by South Africa’s Electric South, they said: “It tells the story of migration through the family members that stay on the continent. We’ve been first very sensitive to this exploration of the other side of the story we have often heard of and we’re happy that it comes from this artist. We also thought that this project, still in an early stage, was a very promising way to use virtuality, namely 3D, to talk about people that can themselves become virtual. Using tech to express this, and at the end making humanity heard, can help us to understand the reality we live in.”

The IDFA DocLab Forum jury, consisting of Faye Kabali-Kagwa, Marie Blondiaux and Zeina Abi Assy, added that “the digital creation is maturing as it becomes a place for diverse, personal, and divergent perspectives, noting that the strong project selection dove into history, feelings, nature, and personal narratives in a new way.”

Each award includes a cash prize of €1,500. IDFA will conclude its 35th in person edition on Nov. 20.

IDFA Forum Awards

IDFA Forum Award for Best Pitch: Kani Lapuerta’s “Niñxs”

IDFA Forum Award for Best Rough Cut: Alison O’Daniel’s “The Tuba Thieves”

DocLab Forum Award: Omoregie Osakpolor’s “We Speak Their Names in Hushed Tones”

Best of Variety

Sign up for Variety’s Newsletter. For the latest news, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Click here to read the full article.