Written by Jon Betz
Traveling down to L.A. to the IDA Awards (held at the DGA Theater) was a huge honor last Friday evening. Both Taggart and I donned our sport jackets (a rarity) and were proud to both attend the Awards Ceremony and to receive the Pare Lorentz Award, Honorable Mention (!) for Queen of The Sun. Nominees for the Pare Lorentz Award in past years have included such well-known films as The Cove, Food Inc. & Garbage Warrior.
It was hugely meaningful to be recognized among the ranks of such praised filmmakers as Lucy Walker with her Best Documentary and Pare Lorentz Winner “Waste Land”, Barbara Kopple (Harlan County USA) who received the Lifetime Achievement Award and Alan & Susan Raymond, whose ground-breaking television series “An American Family” made waves and pre-dated the first reality TV. It also didn’t hurt to have the awards interspersed by the host for the evening, Supersize Me‘s hilarious Morgan Spurlock, whose stand-up comedy and ad-lib kept the audience laughing.
One thing I don’t think either of us expected is how inspiring the ceremony would be for both of us. Speeches by Joe Berlinger, whose legal battles with his film “Crude”, have protected the first amendment rights of all documentary filmmakers really brought to my attention the responsibility we have as documentarians in a world where modern news media sometimes has too many corporate interests invested to tell the whole truth.
Other speeches, such as those given by the filmmakers of “Presumed Guilty”, a film about the Mexican justice system which is exposing for the first time to the people of Mexico the way the justice system actually works there (I’ll give you a hint, not like it works on “Law & Order”) proved again that documentaries can truly create change at both the grassroots and political level–something we’re eager to do as well with Queen of the Sun.
A huge thank you to the IDA and IDA Jury Members for selecting Queen of the Sun: What Are the Bees Telling Us? We’re bursting at the seams. And also our gratitude to everyone who has supported Queen of the Sun so far. We’ll keep you posted for many screenings coming up this spring. Don’t be shy to contact us if you want to help be an agent of change for the bees. We need your help!