Hamptons Doc Fest Honors Frederick Wiseman, “United We Sing” and More

Hamptons Doc Fest
Hamptons Doc Fest

Lights! Camera! Action! Hamptons Doc Fest 2020 is set to present an incredible lineup of 35 films starting December 4, along with a number of awards to filmmakers and films that transcend the screen.

Frederick Wiseman, director of City Hall, his 43rd film, which will be screened at the festival, will receive this year’s Pennebaker Career Achievement Award in honor of D.A. Pennebaker, a longtime Sag Harbor resident and documentary filmmaker who passed away in August 2019. The award, sponsored by Lana Jokel, who attributes her film career to Pennebaker, will be presented online by Jacqui Lofaro, with a pre-recorded acceptance speech by the 90-year-old Wiseman. Then Josh Siegel, curator of the Department of Film at MOMA, will present a short career overview of Wiseman’s work, prior to the marathon screening of City Hall (2020, 272 min.), about city government in Boston.

Previous recipients of the Hamptons Doc Fest’s Career Achievement Award include prestigious directors Richard Leacock, Susan Lacy, Chris Hegedus and D.A. Pennebaker, Barbara Kopple, Stanley Nelson, Alex Gibney, Liz Garbus, Sheila Nevins and Robert Kenner.

The Art and Inspiration Award, sponsored by The Tee & Charles Addams Foundation, will be presented to United We Sing, about a choral group from the University of Rochester that travels to Africa to sing with and then closely bonds with a group of AIDS orphans in rural Kenya. The award will be presented by Kevin Miserocchi, director of the Tee & Charles Adams Foundation. The film will be followed by a Q&A moderated by Michael Lawrence, Director of the Bridgehampton Chamber Music Society, with the film’s director Dan Petracca and executive producers Aaron Sperber and Ross Pedersen.

Through the Night, a documentary that explores the personal cost of our modern economy through the stories of two working mothers and a childcare provider whose lives intersect at a 24-hour daycare center, will receive the Robin L. Long Human Rights Award, presented by Robin L. Long,  and will be accompanied by a Q&A with director Loira Limbal, hosted by HDF Advisory Board member Susan Margolin.

Fish and Men, which exposes the high cost of inexpensive fish in the global seafood economy, and the forces threatening local fishing communities and public health, will receive The Andrew Sabin Family Foundation Environmental Award, presented by Sam Sabin. Co-directors Darby Duffin and Adam Jones will engage in a Q&A with Bonnie Brady of Montauk, executive director of the Long Island Commercial Fishing Association.

Festival passes at $125 and individual film tickets at $12 are available starting November 10 on the Hamptons Doc Fest website at hamptonsdocfest.com. The website for this virtual film festival also includes a full description of each film, in a downloadable program booklet, and instructions on how you can watch the film on your computer, iPad/tablet or television.

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