Paradise Lost directors Bruce Sinofsky and Joe Berlinger (pictured left and right respectively) are set to be the first recipients of the Hell Yeah Prize – a new, periodic award from the Cinema Eye Honors for Nonfiction Filmmaking which celebrates filmmakers who have created artistic works that have also had significant, real-world impact.
The inaugural award will be presented on January 11, 2012 at the fifth annual Cinema Eye Honors ceremony to be held at the Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria, New York. A screening of the latest film in the Paradise Lost trilogy – Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory – will take place on January 10, also at the Museum of the Moving Image, and the film will have its HBO premiere later in January 2012.
“The mission of Cinema Eye is to prioritize outstanding artistry and craft in the field of documentary,” Cinema Eye Honors co-chair Esther Robinson said of the new award. “We wanted to find a way to recognize those films and filmmakers that excel at the highest levels to create great art and, as a result, also happen to affect change in the real world that is measurable.
“Joe and Bruce’s Paradise Lost trilogy – a two-decade investigation of an outrageous case of wrongful prosecution and conviction – defines this award perfectly.”
Berlinger added: “To be given the opportunity to work on a series of films that had such a tangible result as the release of the wrongfully convicted West Memphis Three from prison is enough of a reward for any filmmaker, so to be singled out for this inaugural Hell Yeah award is truly inspiring.”