SAN FRANCISCO—The San Francisco International Film Festival named its Audience Award & Golden Gate Award winners on Saturday April 17.  A total of $17,000 in cash prizes were spread amongst the winners which included emerging and established filmmakers. The festival was available on streaming platforms for audiences with certain films being shown at the Drive In theater set up at the Presidio. 

The winner of the Audience Award for Best Narrative Feature went to Chase Palmer for his debut film “Naked Singularity,”  a crime thriller which stars John Boyega of “Star Wars,” as a New York public defender drawn into a dangerous heist in this adaptation of Sergio De La Pava’s novel. The Audience Award for Best Documentary Feature was a tie between director Roberto Salinas for the film “Cuban Dancer” and director Jeremy Workman for “Lily Topples the World.” “Cuban Dancer” is a documentary that focuses on the journey of Alexis Valdes as he moves from Cuba to Florida to pursue his career in ballet. “Lily Topples the World” chronicles the life of Lily Hevesh, a world famous domino toppler. 

Among the recipients of the Golden Gate Awards were the winners for best new director (fiction feature) was won by Arie Esiri & Chuko Esiri of Nigeria for their film “This Is My Desire,” taking home a cash prize of $3,500. The winners for best documentary film went to “Writing With Fire,” from Rintu Thomas & Sushmit Ghosh of India while the winner for best Bay Area Documentary was “After Antarctica” by Tasha Van Zandt of the U.S. both winning $3,500 and $2,000 respectively. Other winners included best family film, best short films in several categories and best mid-length film with cash prizes ranging from $500-$2,000.