Diana Paragas’ YELLOW ROSE Wins Big at Bentonville Film Festival with Jury Award, Best Narrative Feature with Distribution Offer

 

The Bentonville Film Festival, a one-of-a-kind annual event co-founded by Academy Award-winning actor Geena Davis championing inclusion in all forms of media, announced its 2019 Award Winning Films, and honors at an awards ceremony presented by AMI on Saturday, May 11 The Meteor Guitar Gallery. With 86% of this year’s programming represented by female filmmakers and 62% represented by filmmakers of color, LGBTQ+ or different abilities, the evening celebrated BFF’s deep commitment to its mission of inclusivity.

Diane Paragas’ YELLOW ROSE took home the top prize winning the Jury Best Narrative Feature category, giving the film a distribution offer from BFF partners AMC Theaters, Vudu and Walmart. Best of Fest, which is exclusively voted on by the audience, was Flavio Alves’ THE GARDEN LEFT BEHIND.  Through a partnership with Vudu and Bitmax, additional films in the BFF competition category will be given the opportunity to receive digital distribution on Vudu.

“American Horror Story” actor Jamie Brewer was awarded with the “See It, Be It” award for her unwavering commitment to representing and championing those with intellectual disabilities both on screen and off, ensuring media accurately reflects the world in which we live.

This year, the inaugural BFF Rising Star award went to two young performers, Jadiel Dowlin (Star Falls) and Michela Luci (Dino Dana), who have demonstrated exceptional talent, are destined for bright futures in film or television and represent the mission of BFF.

Presenters at the awards show included BFF co-founder and chair Geena Davis, co-founder Trevor Drinkwater, festival President of Programming Wendy Guerrero, Geena Davis Institute on Gender and Media CEO Madeline DiNonno, VP of Beauty and Style for AMI Gwen Flanburg, Walmart Senior Buyer for Music and Movies Cody Allison and Coca-Cola’s Louis Martin among others.

 

The full list of awards and honorees include:

 

Jury Award Winners:

  • Best Narrative Film: YELLOW ROSE, Director: Diane Paragas
  • Best Documentary Film: SAME GOD, Director: Linda Midgett
  • Best Family Film: SWEET INSPIRATIONS, Director: Brittany Yost
  • Best Short Film: ME TAMBIÉN, Director: Valerie Vallejos
  • Best Episodic: HYSTERICAL WOMEN, Directors: Whitney Uland & Nora Kaye

 

Audience Award Winners:

  • Best Narrative Film: OLYMPIA, Director: Gregory Dixon
  • Best Documentary Film: OUR QUINCEAÑERA, Director: Fanny Veliz Grande
  • Best Short Film: (TIE) FLIGHT, Directors: Kia Moses & Adrian McDonald; MADE PUBLIC, Director: Foster Wilson
  • Best Episodic: HYSTERICAL WOMEN, Directors: Whitney Uland & Nora Kaye
  • Best of the Fest: THE GARDEN LEFT BEHIND, Flavio Alves

 

Additional Awards Include:

  • Samsung Create Award: Abigail Durkin, Austin Johnston, Peter Schwammlein, Isabelle Tindall (The Thaden School)
  • Rising Star Awards: Jadiel Dowlin, Michela Luci
  • See It, Be It Award: Jamie Brewer

Autism “Can Do” Award: Garret Nichols (Presented by John’s Crazy Socks and Cox Communications)

The 2019 Bentonville Film Festival is presented in partnership with founding sponsor Walmart and presenting sponsor Coca-Cola. 2019 BFF sponsors also include MARS, Unilever, Sony, Viacom, AMC Theaters, Universal, NBA, ConAgra, VUDU, Johnson & Johnson, Samsung, Hisense and Media Partner, AMI.