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Bucking Tradition takes home Grand Prize at 2019 Ottawa International Film Festival

By Global Vegans

The second annual Ottawa International Vegan Film Festival (OIVFF) took place at The Chamber Theatre in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada this evening and the organization is proud to announce this year’s winners in the film and photo categories.

 

Director Sharon M. Boeckle’s Bucking Tradition won both the Best Overall Film award as well as the award for Best Animal Welfare film. Dustin Brown’s innovative Casa de Carne nabbed the Best Short Film trophy, #Powerplant won in the category of

Best Environmental Protection Film, Marcia Machado’s thought-provoking Code Blue: Redefining the Practice of Medicine won Best Health & Nutrition Film award, and director Dr. Theodora Capaldo’s expose on animal testing, Gold Doesn’t Rust, took home the Best Lifestyle Film award. The full list of winners can be found below.

Discussing the impact of the Best Overall Film, Bucking Tradition, festival judge Jim Amos states, “We often cringe in horror at the animal cruelty we see inflicted in the name of “sport” around the world such as those committed in the bullfighting ring but are blind to the blatant abuse of animals right in our own backyard on the rodeo circuit. Bucking Tradition did a masterful job at depicting the often-irreparable injuries suffered by bulls and calves at hundreds of these events across the country every year, all in the name of carrying on one of the last remaining traditions of the American West.”

 

The OIVFF, now in its second year, was honoured to present a diverse collection of films from around the world that made lasting impressions and ignited audience's imaginations. These vegan themed films were bursting with creativity, compassion, and inspiration. 

 

In 2019 the festival welcomed 40 film submissions, both short and full-length features, fiction and documentary from 13 countries totaling over 15 hours of vegan-themed films in five categories. All entries were viewed by a pre-selection committee chaired by the Festival Director and Programming Director. Finalists chosen by this committee were then screened by an appointed international jury.

 

Photo Essay Contest 

In addition, OIVFF launched a Vegan Photo Essay Contest as part of the Film Festival in 2019. The photo contest is the first of its kind anywhere in the world. Festival Director Shawn Stratton stated, “Our photo essay is a collection of images that tell a story and propel a narrative over multiple images. Photo essays often create a series of emotions in the viewer and are a powerful way to tell a story without relying heavily on text.” 

The competition's goal was to showcase the best in vegan themed photo essays – to recognize the best stories told through a series of 3-5 still images. 

 

Awards for the photo essay contest were won by photographers from around the world including Aitor Garmendia (Spain), Noah Ortega (Spain), Ruth Montiel Aria (Palestine), and Jo-Anne McArthur (Canada) whose award-winning photos came from around the world.

 

When asked why Aitor Garmendia’s, Slaughterhouse was selected as the overall winner, festival judge Victoria Moran of the Main Street Vegan Podcast, said “This one spoke to my heart through the animals, their suffering and their dignity. Having spent a day in a slaughterhouse myself once, I was brought back there. Some things never seem to change. This one must. This photo essay will be a part of that change."

OIVFF is proud to have been sponsored by the VegOttawa, the essential resource for vegetarian and vegans in Canada’s national capital region and Copper Branch, 100% plant-powered food. 

 

Photos from the award winning films can be viewed here.

The 2019 festival video trailer can be viewed here.

The award winning photo essays can be viewed here.

 

 

2019 OTTAWA INTERNATIONAL VEGAN FILM FESTIVAL AWARD WINNERS

 

Winner: 2019 Best Film ‘Overall’ & 2019 Best Film ‘Animal Welfare’ 

Bucking Tradition, United States

Directed by: Sharon M Boeckle

 

Bucking Tradition explores one of America’s most iconic competitions—the rodeo. With thousands of events held across the nation and around the world every year, this “sport” is hailed by some as one of the last traditions of the American West. By others, it’s decried as one of our nation’s last legalized forms of systematic and brutal animal cruelty masquerading as sport and family entertainment. Do some traditions deserve to die? Maybe they do. 

 

Winner: Best Film ‘Short’

Casa de Carne, United States

Directed by: Dustin Brown

 

On a night out with friends, Eric tries a new restaurant that takes the dining experience full circle. Set in a not-so-distant dark future, "Casa de Carne" is a thought-provoking short film about hard choices and hidden truths.

 

Winner: Best Film ‘Environmental Protection’

#Powerplant, Netherlands

Directed by: Robert, van Tellingen

 

The Nicolaas G. Pierson Foundation presents its 5th documentary with Marianne Thieme. After ‘Meat the Truth’, ‘Sea the Truth’, ‘The Pacer in the Marathon’ and ‘One Single Planet’, this new documentary explores the prospects of a plant-based society.  

 

#Powerplant provides added insight into the link between climate change and meat consumption, a topic that Marianne Thieme was the first politician to address in the climate documentary ‘Meat the Truth’ in 2007, an issue that has become even more pertinent since then. According to Oxford researcher Marco Springmann, a transition to a plant-based diet can prevent up to 8 million deaths per year in 2050, and on a global scale, can lead to savings that have a value to society of up to thirty trillion USD (30,000,000,000,000). Adopting a plant-based menu can reduce up to 73% of agriculture’s greenhouse gas emissions and can make it possible to revert 76% of all agricultural land back to nature, says Joseph Poore, also a researcher at the University of Oxford. The study is described by The Guardian as “the most comprehensive analysis to date” in this field.  

 

Winner: Best Film ‘Health & Nutrition 

Code Blue: Redefining the Practice of Medicine, United States

Directed By: Marcia Machado

 

Through the lens of filmmaker Marcia Machado, code blue reveals lapses in the current state of medicine and provides a common sense solution by featuring the practice of lifestyle medicine to prevent, manage and reverse nearly 80% of chronic illnesses. It presents the hurdles to the proposed shift: outdated curricula in medical schools, confusion in the media, inadequate government policies, and the underlying influences of the pharmaceutical and food industries.   With a dose of lighthearted humor, combining science and common sense, code blue follows a passionate physician, Dr. Saray Stancic, as she reflects upon her journey from a multiple sclerosis diagnosis to wellness through her own adoption of lifestyle medicine.  Stancic introduces us to expert physicians/scientists who are paving the way to turn the tide on the chronic illness epidemic, empowering audiences to stand up and reclaim their health. 

 

Winner: Best Film ‘Lifestyle’

Gold Doesn't Rust: Animal Testing and its 21st Century Alternatives, United States

Directed by, Dr. Theodora Capaldo

 

Animal testing has been the standard of scientific research and testing for centuries, in spite of a long history of ineffective results and unimaginable cruelty. Now, emerging technologies promise to revolutionize the field of biomedical research by rejecting the failing animal model in lieu of human-based in-vitro methods. Can these new models break their way into mainstream, or will they be blocked by a scientific community so deeply rooted in animal research? 

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