22nd Annual DGA Student Film Awards in New York

22nd Annual DGA Student Film Awards in New York

December 15, 2016

On December 15, DGA members and their guests attended the ceremony for the 22nd Annual DGA Student Film Awards in the Guild’s New York Theater. These awards are designed to honor, encourage and bring attention to outstanding African American, Asian American, Latino and Women Filmmakers in film schools and select universities across the country.

The ceremony began with a welcome message and introductions from DGA Alternate Board Member Gary Donatelli. Following a screening of clips from the Jury Award-winning films, DGA Alternate Board Member Nicole Kassell presented the certificates of achievement to African American Jury Award recipient Daniella Hobbs of Ithaca College (The City of Good Neighbors), Woman Jury Award recipient Hannah Engelson of Emerson College (Jonah Stands Up), Latino Jury Award recipient Ivo Huahua of Florida State University (Stutter), and accepted the certificate on behalf of Asian American Jury Award recipient Christina Liao of School of Visual Arts (My Grandma's House) who was unable to attend the ceremony.

Director Marilyn Agrelo presented the award to African American Student Filmmaker Award-winner Kevin Giles of Drexel University (The Blaise EP); Eastern Diversity Steering Committee Co-Chair Jason Medina to Woman Student Filmmaker Award-winner Ugla Hauksdóttir of Columbia University (How Far She Went); Eastern Diversity Steering Committee Co-Chair Joyce Thomas to Asian American Student Filmmaker Award-winner Yudho Aditya of Columbia University (Pria); and Director Sarah Pirozek to Latino Student Filmmaker Award-winner Jimmy Keyrouz of Columbia University (Nocturne in Black).

The presentations were followed by screenings of the winning short films and a reception.

The winners were selected by blue ribbon panels comprised of DGA members. These awards have highlighted dozens of African American, Asian American, Latino and Women filmmakers over the years. A number of past winners have gone on to enjoy successful directing careers, including:

  • Jon M. Chu (G.I. Joe: Retaliation; Justin Bieber: Never Say Never; The LXD: The Legion of Extraordinary Dancers; Step Up 3D)
  • Ryan Coogler (Fruitvale Station, Creed)
  • Nicole Kassell (The Following; The Killing; The Americans; Suits; The Closer; Cold Case; The Woodsman)
  • Patricia Riggen (The 33; Lemonade Mouth; Under the Same Moon)
  • Sylvain White (Hawaii Five-0; Person of Interest; Covert Affairs; CSI: Miami; Stomp the Yard).

The West Coast ceremony was held on November 10, 2016 at the DGA Theater in Los Angeles. Click here for photos from that event.


DGA Student Film Awards rules and procedures mandate that competing films must have been made in the 2015/2016 school year (September 2015 through August 2016), and must have been produced as a student project under the supervision of a faculty member. Dramas, comedies and documentaries are all eligible – animated and experimental films are not. Applicants must be enrolled in, or be a recent (one-year) graduate from, an accredited post-secondary institution in California or DGA-selected university offering a degree in film or television. Eligible films are those in which a student held every major crew position. Productions in which a non-student, professional or a faculty member served as cinematographer, camera operator, sound recordist, editor, lighting designer or screenwriter may be disqualified.

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