‘American Factory’, ‘Apollo 11’ Lead Cinema Eye Honors Nominations

American Factory

By Pat Mullen

American Factory and Apollo 11 strengthened their status as Oscar frontrunners today with the release of the nominations for this year’s Cinema Eye Honors. The docs by Julia Reichert and Steven Bognar and Todd Douglas Miller, respectively, earned five nominations each today. Both docs landed nominations for Outstanding Nonfiction Feature, while Reichert and Bognar also scored a citation in the Outstanding Director category where they won the same honours at Sundance in January.

The docs are joined in the top race by fellow Oscar contenders One Child Nation, For Sama, Honeyland, and Midnight Family. One Child Nation and Honeyland also landed in the race for Best Director, proving that this year’s contest is still an open race between a pack of favourites.

Canadian filmmakers performed respectably in today’s announcement too with Brett Story landing a surprise nomination for Outstanding Director for The Hottest August. She bested the directors of Outstanding Nonfiction Feature nominees Apollo 11 (Todd Douglas Miller) and For Sama (Waad al-Kateab and Edward Watts). Anthropocene: The Human Epoch scored two nominations in Cinema Eye’s craft categories for Outstanding Cinematography and Outstanding Original Score for Nick de Pencier and Rose Bolton and Norah Lorway, respectively, while Alex Lazarowich appeared in the Outstanding Nonfiction Short category for Fast Horse, which readers can watch at CBC Docs

Notable absences included the box office hit The Biggest Little Farm and Knock Down the House, which appeared only in the Audience Choice race. Martin Scorsese’s Rolling Thunder Revue was shut out entirely, as was Petra Costa’s The Edge of Democracy, which means Netflix somewhat came up short in today’s announcement despite actually leading the tally with 17 nominations thanks to American Factory and Beyonce’s Homecoming in the previously announced broadcast categories. Winners will announced on January 6.

The complete list of Cinema Eye Honours nominations is as follows:

Outstanding Nonfiction Feature

American Factory
Directed and Produced by Steven Bognar and Julia Reichert
Produced by Jeff Reichert and Julie Parker Benello

Apollo 11
Directed and Produced by Todd Douglas Miller
Produced by Thomas Petersen and Evan Krauss

For Sama
Directed by Waad al-Kateab and Edward Watts
Produced by Waad al-Kateab

Directed by Ljubomir Stefanov and Tamara Kotevska
Produced by Atanas Georgiev and Ljubomir Stefanov

Midnight Family
Directed and Produced by Luke Lorentzen
Produced by Kellen Quinn

One Child Nation
Directed and Produced by Nanfu Wang and Jialing Zhang
Produced by Christoph Jörg, Julie Goldman, Christopher Clements and Carolyn Hepburn

Outstanding Direction

American Factory – Steven Bognar and Julia Reichert
The Cave – Feras Fayyad
Cold Case Hammarskjöld – Mads Brügger
Honeyland- Ljubomir Stefanov and Tamara Kotevska
The Hottest August – Brett Story
One Child Nation – Nanfu Wang and Jialing Zhang

Outstanding Editing

17 Blocks – Jennifer Tiexiera
American Factory – Lindsay Utz
Apollo 11 – Todd Douglas Miller
Letter to the Editor – Alan Berliner
Mike Wallace is Here – Billy McMillin

Outstanding Production

Aquarela – Aimara Reques, Sigrid Dyekjær and Heino Deckert
Apollo 11Todd Douglas Miller, Thomas Petersen and Evan Krauss
The Cave – Kirstine Barfod and Sigrid Dyekjær
For Sama – Waad Al-Kateab
Midnight Family – Luke Lorentzen and Kellen Quinn
Midnight Traveler – Emelie Mahdavian and Su Kim

Outstanding Cinematography

Aquarela- Victor Kossokovsky
Anthropocene: The Human Epoch – Nicholas De Pencier
Honeyland – Fejmi Daut and Samir Ljuma
Midnight Family – Luke Lorentzen
What You Gonna Do When the World’s On Fire? – Diego Romero

Outstanding Original Score

American Factory – Chad Cannon
Anthropocene: The Human Epoch – Rose Bolton and Norah Lorway
Apollo 11 – Matt Morton
Aquarela – Eicca Toppinen
Black Mother – 4th Disciple
Symphony of the Ursus Factory – Dominik Strycharski

Outstanding Graphic Design or Animation

The Great Hack – Ash Thorp, Matthew Hornick and Patrick Cederberg
The Inventor: Out for Blood in Silicon Valley – Hazel Baird
Moonlight Sonata: Deafness in Three Movements – Brian Kinkley and Ben Luce
Our Time Machine – Ryan Wehner

Outstanding Debut

The Disappearance of My Mother – Beniamino Barrese
Jawline – Liza Mandelup
Scheme Birds – Ellen Fiske and Ellinor Hallin
Searching Eva – Pia Hellenthal
Swarm Season – Sarah Christman
Symphony of the Ursus Factory – Jasmina Wójcik

Outstanding Nonfiction Short

Crannog – Isa Roa
Fast Horse – Alex Lazarowich
Ghosts of Sugar Land – Bassam Tariq
Lowland Kids – Sandra Winther
Stay Close – Luther Clement and Shuhan Fan
Subject to Review – Theo Anthony

Audience Choice Prize

17 Blocks
The Amazing Johnathan Documentary
American Factory
Apollo 11
Ask Dr. Ruth
The Biggest LIttle Farm
The Cave
For Sama
Knock Down the House


Always in Season – Jacqueline Olive
Bellingcat: Truth in a Post-Truth World – Hans Pool
Dark Suns – Julien Elie
Present.Perfect- Shengze Zhu
The Raft – Marcus Lindeen

Please visit Cinema Eye Honors for the list of previously announced nominees and honourees for “The Unforgettables.”