Film Contest Information

                                                                        Film Awards Presented                                                                         Sunday, March 29, 2020

Best Feature Documentary Presented by Panavision
This award is presented to the most engaging and relevant feature-length documentary. It must be technically and creatively well-rounded. The filmmaker will receive a $15,000 rental credit with Panavision.

Best Feature (US) Presented by Panavision
This award is presented to the Best Domestic Feature Documentary. The award is chosen by a jury using the same artistic criteria as the Best Feature Documentary Award. The filmmaker will receive a $5,000 credit with Panavision.

Emerging Documentarian Award Presented by Panavision
This award recognizes exceptional talent exhibited by one artist in feature documentary filmmaking. The award is chosen by a jury using the same artistic criteria as the Best Documentary Awards. The filmmaker will receive a $5,000 credit with Panavision.

Best Short Documentary Presented by Panavision
This award is presented to the most engaging and relevant short documentary. It must be technically and creatively well-rounded. The filmmaker will receive a $5,000 credit with Panavision.

Best Denton Documentary
This award is presented to the film that best represents the people and places of Denton County. The filmmaker will receive $500 credit with Atomica Music.

Best Student Documentary
This award is given to the best short documentary film by a university student. The filmmaker will receive $500 credit with Atomica Music.



Best Feature Documentary
Nae Pasaran: Director, Felipe Bustos Sierra (Scotland)

Best Feature (US)
When We Walk: Director, Jason DaSilva (New York)

Emerging Documentarian Award
Cheryl Allison, Director (Texas): Shatter the Silence

                                                                                                                          Best Short Film                                                                                                                              This Is The Way We Rise: Director, Ciara Lacy (Hawaii)

Best Denton Documentary
489 Days: Director, Rania Elmalky (Texas)

Best Student Documentary
                                                                                                          Worthy of More: Director, Juan Ojeda                                                                                                            Texas Christian University


Andy LaViolette is a Denton-based cinematographer and co-owner of a boutique production company called Mr. Magic Carpet Ride Productions (MMCRP) with his wife, Christi. The company has released numerous music-related films since 2006 that have been distributed all over the world and collectively viewed over 100 million times on the web. Since 2017 Andy has also maintained a full-time position as Senior Video Editor for Shutterstock, Inc., a leading entity for stock video, imagery, and music.

Bart Weiss is an award-winning filmmaker, educator and director/founder of the Dallas VideoFest. He produces “Frame of Mind” on KERA TV and is a producer and host of the podcast the Fog of Truth. Bart is an associate professor at the University of Texas at Arlington where he teachers film and video. He was President and Chair of AIVF and was a video columnist for The Dallas Morning News, and United Features Syndicate. He currently writes for Student Filmmaker and Bart received an MFA in Film Directing from Columbia University.

David Williamson is a retired sociology professor from Denton. After college he lived or worked in eight African countries over more than 30 years. While on faculty at UNT he led and taught in a master’s program for Orthodox Jews, making 40 trips to Jerusalem over a period of 20 years.

Deanna W. Titzler, a native of San Diego, is director of public relations at Texas Woman’s University. She served as associate producer of last year’s Thin Line Best Denton Documentary Mack Minded. She enjoys films that highlight the role women have played in history, especially in the science and technology fields.

Elena Rodriguez, native born Texan, went to school at St. Louis' Washington University then moved to New York City to pursue an artistic career. Elena continued studies for an MFA in painting after working briefly in film post production,After a decade away from the Lone Star State, Elena moved to Rockport, Texas where she became Managing and Creative Director of the Rockport Film Festival in 2015. She currently lives in Corpus Christi, where she maintains an active studio practice.

Farhad Mohammadi is an award-winning documentary producer and editor based in Chicago who studied film at NYU and ICP. Fading Portraits world premiered at Thin Line (2019), going on to win several awards including Best Foreign Film (Docutah) and the Osaka's Governor Award (Kadoma Film Festival. Farhad's projects often highlight the role of art and artists in authoritarian societies.




Genene Murphy has been a fan of films since she took her first film class in college. She has been to every Thin Line Festival since it started and loves that the films are all documentaries. A Dentonite for decades, she rarely misses an opportunity to support the lively local arts scene.

Jason A. Raschen is an award-winning film producer and a permanent fixture in Houston independent film scene. His films has been selected at numerous film festivals all over the world. He also host the podcast "The B-Roll". He currently serves on the Board of Southwest Alternate Media Project (SWAMP).

Joe Brown is an Assistant Professor of Media, Film & Journalism Studies at the University of Denver. His documentary work focuses on social and environmental issues. Joe is also the Vice-President of the University Film & Video Association (UFVA). Learn more about Joe's work at:

Lauren Cater is a documentary filmmaker and an Assistant Professor at Middle Georgia State University. She is alumni of the University of North Texas where she received her BA and MFA in film. Lauren's documentaries have been screened and earned recognition nationally in film festivals and conferences. She is currently in production on a feature, The Caregivers, focusing on caregiving youth in the south.

Marek Dojs, artist and professor, splits his time between producing creative work and guiding students in their own storytelling through digital cinema. He is the chair of the Communications Program at the University of Mary in Bismarck, North Dakota, where he has been teaching since 2014. Marek earned his M.F.A. from the University of North Texas in Denton and a B.A. in History and Communications from the University of St. Thomas in Houston.

Nefin Dinc is Assistant Professor in Media Arts and Design at James Madison University, holding a Masters degree on Media and Culture from John Logie Baird Centre, Stratclyde University, Glasgow and a MFA degree on documentary filmmaking from University of North Texas. She served as Project Director of the Youth Filmmaking Project, teaching young Turkish students how to make short films on democracy and human rights. Nefin is now working on "Antoine the Fortunate", a documentary film on WWI in the Ottoman.

Suzanne Dooley is a long time veteran of the film and television industries. She started as a child actor and moved into production, as a P.A. Production Coordinator, Production Manager, and Producer She has worked for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, the BBC and PBS, amongst others. She is a Past President of Women in Film/Dallas, creating the Grants and Scholarship program to help promote the role of women in the industry.