Billie And Emma wins audience award at Inside Out 2019

International filmmakers take the top prizes at 29th annual Toronto-based queer film fest

A teen romance set in the 90s and a documentary about radical alternative to the Girl Scouts picked up audience awards at the Inside Out LGBT Film Festival.

The 29th annual event wrapped up by handing out $40,000 in prize money on June 2.

Filipino director Samantha Lee’s  Billie And Emma, about two Catholic high school students who find love in a small town, won the Audience Award for Best Narrative Feature, and American filmmaker Linda Goldstein Knowlton’s We Are The Radical Monarchs, about an activist troop for tween girls of colour, nabbed the Audience Award for Best Documentary Feature.

British director Jamie Dispirito’s Thrive picked up the Audience Award for Best Short Film.

International directors also took the festival’s top juried prizes. Indonesian filmmaker Garin Nugroho’s Memories Of My Body won the Inside Out Special Award for Innovation, while Chinese director Xiang Zi’s A Dog Barking At The Moon won Best First Feature.

Megan Wennberg’s doc Drag Kids – which also played at Hot Docs – picked up Best Canadian Feature, Justine Stevens’s Soft Spot won Best Canadian short and Lysandre Cosse-Tremblay was named Emerging Canadian Artist for Skies Are Not Just Blue.

This year’s Inside Out featured a big emphasis on episodic web and television series, with high-profile American series Vida and Tales Of The City screening. Netflix has entered into a four-year deal with the festival to support LGBTQ content. The streaming giant also sponsored the Pitch, Please short film pitching competition. The winner was Los Angeles-based director and actor Rain Valdez for Re-Live: The Tale Of A 30-Year-Old Cheerleader.


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