“Advocating isn’t always pleasant, but advocacy remains to be our greatest ally,” said director D. Smith. “Basic human rights should never be given to someone, It should only be expected. Simply respecting others makes you an advocate. Thank you for this prodigious honor.”
“The IFSN Advocate Award was created for filmmakers like D. Smith, who advocates for a community often silenced,” said Jordan Raup, co-founder of IFSN and editor-in-chief and co-founder of The Film Stage. “Brimming with style and intimacy, the simple conceit of D. Smith’s captivating directorial debut allows space for its subjects––four transgender sex workers––to tell their stories with an entertaining and moving amount of humanity.”
“Kokomo City is an act of cinematic bravery, a raucous and moving portrait of lives that aren’t often seen on screen, told with startling honesty and breathtaking craftsmanship,” said Brian Tallerico, Managing Editor of RogerEbert.com. “It’s a phenomenal example of Roger’s belief that film is an empathy machine, putting us in the shoes of lives we would never otherwise emotionally understand.”
Executive produced by Lena Waithe, “Kokomo City” won the Sundance Film Festival’s NEXT Innovator Award and NEXT Audience Award, as well as the Berlinale’s Audience Award in the Panorama Documentary section. “Kokomo City” was released theatrically in July 2023 and is now available digitally from Magnolia Pictures.
The IFSN Advocate Award, created by the network as part of its mission to celebrate and support indie film, is selected by a jury of writers and editors from IFSN sites, with each site nominating a finalist and deliberating to award a winner. The inaugural IFSN Advocate Award winner in 2022 was Shaunak Sen’s “All That Breathes,” which went on to receive an Academy Award nomination for Best Documentary Feature Film.
About Indie Film Site Network
Indie Film Site Network (IFSN) is a collaboration between well-respected media outlets covering the most essential developments in independent and international cinema. IFSN, which represents The Film Stage, Hammer to Nail, IONCINEMA.com, RogerEbert.com, and Screen Anarchy, was created with a mission to support film criticism and foster an ever-growing community of indie film lovers. For more information, visit indiefilmsitenetwork.com. For sales and partnership inquiries, contact email@example.com.