Fourth Annual Critics’ Choice Documentary Awards Hitting BRIC November 10th

Documentary films have grown in popularity over the last decade, and in ways that are difficult to calculate. It isn’t just that more people are watching documentaries, or that it is so much easier to watch an expanding list of them, but that these things have led to a much broader injection of documentary into the culture. People talk about them. When award shows come around, a growing number have people have not only seen many of the nominees, they’ve gotten other people to see them.

We at The Critics Choice Association are now heading into our fourth Critics’ Choice Documentary Awards. They just needed their own moment and celebration, and honestly, they are just a different enough animal.

This year, the CCA is introducing a new award, The Pennebaker Award, to the legendary Frederick Wiseman.

The fourth annual Critics’ Choice Documentary Awards gala will take place on Sunday, November 10, 2019 at BRIC in Brooklyn, New YorkThe Critics Choice Association (CCA) will once again be honoring the finest achievements in documentaries, released in theaters, on TV and on major digital platforms, as determined by the voting of qualified CCA members.

Critics Choice Association CEO Joey Berlin notes, “For the fourth year in a row, we look forward to shining the spotlight on the outstanding documentary filmmaking of the year. We continue to highlight the importance and cultural value of documentaries and are thrilled to give the creative filmmakers the recognition and acknowledgement that they deserve.”

Last year, the Critics’ Choice Documentary Awards introduced the Catalyst Sponsorship, a program for industry leaders to support the event. This year’s sponsors include National Geographic Documentary Films and SHOWTIME® Documentary Films.

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At last year’s third annual CCDA event, Won’t You Be My Neighbor? took home the evening’s most prestigious award for Best Documentary as well as the Best Director award for Morgan Neville. Free Solo took home the awards for Best Sports Documentary, Most Innovative Documentary and Best Cinematography. The film later received many more accolades and awards, including the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature.

Award Categories at the fourth annual Critics’ Choice Documentary Awards will include:

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  • Best Documentary Feature
  • Best Director
  • Best First Documentary Feature
  • Best Cinematography
  • Best Narration
  • Best Score
  • Best Editing
  • Best Archival Documentary
  • Best Political Documentary
  • Best Biographical Documentary
  • Best Science and Nature Documentary
  • Best Sports Documentary
  • Best Music Documentary
  • Best Documentary Short
  • Most Compelling Subject
  • Most Innovative Documentary


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Frederick Wiseman is a director of 43 films, primarily focusing on American institutions. In 2018, he was the Charles Eliot Norton Professor of Poetry at Harvard University. In 2016 he received an Honorary Award for lifetime achievement from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Board of Directors. He is a MacArthur Fellow, a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, and an Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He has won numerous awards, including four Emmys. In recent years, he directed Beckett’s Happy Days and Vasily Grossman’s The Last Letter at the Comédie Française in Paris, and The Last Letter at Theatre for a New Audience in New York. A ballet inspired by his first film, Titicut Follies (1967), premiered at the New York University Skirball Theater in 2017.

Marc Eastman is the owner and operator of Are You Screening? and has been writing film reviews for over a decade, and several branches of the internet's film review world have seen his name. He is also a member of The Broadcast Film Critics Association and The Broadcast Television Journalists Association.