Wed. Jul 15th, 2020

2019 Inside Out Toronto LGBT Film Festival Winners

June 2, 2019 (Toronto, Canada) – The winners of the 2019 Inside Out LGBT Film Festival were announced today in Toronto at the annual awards ceremony where over $40,000 in prizes were handed out to various LGBTQ filmmakers. Top honors went to Garin Nugroho for MEMORIES OF MY BODY (Inside Out Special Award for Innovation), Xiang Zi for A DOG BARKING AT THE MOON (Best First Feature), Megan Wennberg for DRAG KIDS (Best Canadian Feature), Justine Stevens for SOFT SPOT (Best Canadian Short) and Lysandre Cosse-Tremblay for SKIES ARE NOT JUST BLUE (Emerging Canadian Artist).

The Audience Award winners included Samantha Lee’s BILLIE AND EMMA for Best Narrative Feature, Linda Goldstein Knowlton’s WE ARE THE RADICAL MONARCHS for Best Documentary Feature and Jamie Dispirito’s THRIVE for Best Short Film.

The festival, which launched the first ever annual LGBTQ Finance Forum, has become an international home and incubator for LGBT filmmakers, both emerging and established. The 2019 Inside Out LGBT Film Festival ran from May 23 to June 2 in Toronto at the TIFF Bell Lightbox and screened 153 films from 30 countries. The feature film program included 6 world premieres, 6 international premieres and 14 Canadian premieres.

The festival was proud to announce the winner of its annual “Pitch, Please” contest to director Rain Valdez for RE-LIVE: A TALE OF A 30-YEAR-OLD CHEERLEADER. The prize involves a cash production grant of $5,000 sponsored by Netflix, as well as a $10,000 in-kind package sponsored by Sim International, EP Canada, Bedtracks, Final Draft, Lewis Brinberg Hanet and Behind The Scenes Services.

The full winners and awards are as follows:


The jurors for the 2019 Canadian jury were Luis De Filippis, Lisa Donato and Nick McCarthy.

Best Canadian Feature – sponsored by Entertainment Partners CanadaDRAG KIDS – Director, Megan Wennberg

Emerging Canadian Artist – sponsored by RBC Royal Bank and William F. White InternationalSKIES ARE NOT JUST BLUE – Director, Lysandre Cosse-Tremblay

Best Canadian Short – Sponsored by AccentureSOFT SPOT – Director, Justine Stevens

Honourable Mention

TERMINALLY IN LOVE – Directors, Emily Jenkins and Justin Black


The jurors for the 2019 International jury were Tricia Hagoriles, Allison Tate and Curtis Wong.

Inside Out Special Award for Innovation – Funded through Inside Out’s Strategic Innovation Fund – $10,000 cash awardMEMORIES OF MY BODY – Director Garin Nugroho

Best First Feature – Sponsored by NetflixA DOG BARKING AT THE MOON – Director Xiang Zi


Audience Award for Best Narrative Feature – Sponsored by Suzy ZuckerBILLIE AND EMMA – Director, Samantha Lee

Audience Award for Best Documentary Feature – Sponsored by Jo-Ann ChiamWE ARE THE RADICAL MONARCHS – Director, Linda Goldstein Knowlton

Audience Award for Best Short Film – Sponsored by Michael Leshner and Michael StarkTHRIVE – Director, Jamie Dispirito

About Inside Out:

Inside Out is Canada’s largest LGBTQ film festival and the single largest promoter and distributor of LGBTQ content in Canada. Founded in 1991, Inside Out is committed to representing the interests of LGBTQ voices within the Canadian film industry. We are dedicated to developing, presenting, and promoting LGBTQ content that showcases and supports the broad diversity of voices and identities within our communities, and ensuring that authentic and positive representation of LGBTQ people is central in that content.

Annually, Inside Out presents the 11-day Toronto LGBT Film Festival (Toronto’s third largest festival after TIFF and Hot Docs), a 4-day festival in Ottawa, a year-round screening and event series at the TIFF Bell Lightbox, and innovative professional development initiatives including the world’s only LGBTQ Feature Film Financing Forum.

Inside Out is made possible through the support of corporate, government, and foundation partners, as well as a membership of more than 1,000 donors annually and audiences in excess of 35,000 attendees.

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