‘Kedi’ Leads Critics’ Choice Documentary Nominations

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The official nominations are in for the second annual Critics’ Choice Documentary Awards. According to Variety, the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA) and Broadcast Television Journalists Association (BTJA) released the full list of films nominated for the awards on Monday.

Leading the pack was Ceyda Torun’s “Kedi,” which tells the tale of the many stray cats of Istanbul, with four nominations. “California Typewriter,” “Chasing Coral,” “City of Ghosts,” “Cries From Syria,” and “Dawson City: Frozen Time” also received multiple nominations. Oscar-nominated filmmaker Joe Berlinger (“Paradise Lost” trilogy”) will also receive the Critics’ Choice Impact Award at the upcoming ceremony, set for the beginning of next month. BFCA president Joey Berlin touted the current “golden age for documentary filmmaking and nonfiction television,” in which the BFCA and BTJA are “proud” to direct audiences to the best documentaries of our time.

This year, the BFCA and BTJA changed previous rules for the nominees, losing the distinction between theatrical and TV/streaming releases for the categories of best documentary, best director and best first feature documentary. Nominating committees chairperson David Freedman pointed to the changing ways audiences access films, telling Variety:

As our industry continues to grow and change, the nominating committees of the BFCA and the BTJA came to the decision together that we needed our categories to better reflect the current way documentaries are released as well as how the audience consumes content.

The winners will be announced at the second annual Critics’ Choice Documentary Awards Nov. 2 at BRIC in Brooklyn, NY. Pen Jillette will return as host. The full list of nominations can be seen below.

Best Documentary
“Abacus: Small Enough to Jail”
“Beware the Slenderman”
“Bright Lights: Starring Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds”
“California Typewriter”
“Chasing Coral”
“City of Ghosts”
“Cries From Syria”
“Dawson City: Frozen Time”
“Eagles of Death Metal: Nos Amis”
“Ex Libris: The New York Public Library”
“Faces Places”
“Jane”
“Kedi”
“One of Us”
“Spettacolo”
“Strong Island”

Best Director
Evgeny Afineevsky (“Cries from Syria”)
Amir Bar-Lev (“Long Strange Trip”)
Matthew Heineman (“City of Ghosts”)
Bill Morrison (“Dawson City: Frozen Time”)
Doug Nichol (“California Typewriter”)
Jeff Orlowski (“Chasing Coral”)
Irene Taylor Brodsky (“Beware the Slenderman”)
Ceyda Torun (“Kedi”)
Agnès Varda & JR (“Faces Places”)
Frederick Wiseman (“Ex Libris: The New York Public Library”)

Best First Documentary
“California Typewriter” (Doug Nichol)
“Kedi” (Ceyda Torun)
“Nowhere to Hide” (Zaradasht Ahmed)
“Step” (Amanda Lipitz)
“Strong Island” (Yance Ford)
“Whose Streets?” (Sabaah Folayan)

Best Political Documentary
“Abacus: Small Enough to Jail”
“An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power”
“City of Ghosts”
“Dolores”
“11/8/16”
“The Reagan Show”

Best Sports Documentary
“AlphaGo”
“Disgraced”
“Icarus”
“Speed Sisters”
“Take Every Wave: The Life of Laird Hamilton”
“Trophy”

Best Music Documentary
“Clive Davis: The Soundtrack of our Lives”
“Contemporary Color”
“Eagles of Death Metal: Nos Amis”
“I Called Him Morgan”
“Long Strange Trip”
“Rumble: The Indians Who Rocked the World”

Most Compelling Living Subject of a Documentary
The Cats of Istanbul (“Kedi”)
Etty (“One of Us”)
Al Gore (“An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power”)
Laird Hamilton (“Take Every Wave: The Life of Laird Hamilton”)
Dolores Huerta (“Dolores”)
Gigi Lazzarato (“This is Everything: Gigi Gorgeous”)
The Sung Family (“Abacus: Small Enough to Jail”)

Most Innovative Documentary
“78/52”
“Casting JonBenet”
“Dawson City: Frozen Time”
“Karl Marx City”
“Kedi”
“Last Men in Aleppo”

Best Song in a Documentary
“Truth to Power” from “An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Powe” (OneRepublic)
“Tell Me How Long” from “Chasing Coral” (Kristen Bell)
“Prayers for This World” from “Cries From Syria” (Cher)
“Best I Can” from “Dina” (Michael Cera featuring Sharon Van Etten)
“Dancing Through the Wreckage” from “Served Like a Girl” (Pat Benatar)
“Jump” from “Step” (Cynthia Erivo)

Best Limited Documentary Series (TV/Streaming)
“The Defiant Ones”
“Five Came Back”
“The Keepers”
“The Nineties”
“Planet Earth II”
“The Vietnam War”

Best Ongoing Documentary Series (TV/Streaming)
“30 for 30”
“American Masters”
“Frontline”
“Independent Lens”
“POV”
“VICE”

What were your favorite documentaries of the year? Let us know in the comments below!

  • AndreTheTurtle

    It will be interesting to see how this affects the races going forward, because while this award show is only two years old, last year four of the five Best Documentary nominations were nominated here as well, so I am curious if that trend will continue.