“Donor Unknown” claims audience award at Silverdocs

Jerry Rothwell's film documenting the relationship between a woman, her biological sperm donor father and newly discovered half-siblings received the audience award for a feature, while Matt Morris' Mr. Happy Man got the audience award for best short.
June 29, 2011

Jerry Rothwell’s Donor Unknown, which documents the story of a young woman searching for her biological sperm donor father and what she finds along the way, claimed the audience award for best feature at the Silverdocs AFI/Discovery Channel Documentary Festival and Conference earlier this week.

The film follows JoEllen Marsh as she searches for the anonymous sperm donor who is her biological father. After finding an online registry that connects donor-conceived children, she meets 13 half-siblings as well as the father that she previously only knew as Donor 150.

Matt Morris’ Mr. Happy Man, which tells the story of eccentric but lovable Bermuda resident Johnny Barnes, nicknamed “Mr. Happy Man” because of his unfailingly happy demeanor, took the audience award for best short.

Silverdocs took place in Silver Spring, MD, from June 20-26.

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Daniele Alcinii is a news reporter at realscreen, the leading international publisher of non-fiction film and television industry news and content. He joins the rs team with journalism experience following a stint out west with Sun Media in Edmonton's Capital Region, and communications work in Melbourne, Australia and Toronto. You can follow him on Twitter at @danielealcinii.