Marshall Curry Full Frame Documentary Film Festival "Tribute Award" Honoree

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At the 2015 Full Frame Documentary Film Festival, acclaimed filmmaker Marshall Curry took home an achievement award for his manifold contributions to documentary filmmaking in only 10 years. The festival honored him with a retrospective of his five features, which include many notable, and Academy-Award-nominated, offerings that came to be through Curry’s storytelling prowess as an editor, director, producer, and cinematographer.


Curry initially burst onto the scene with 2005’s Street Fight, which documented the 2002 mayoral run of upstart New Jersey politician Cory Booker. Met with widespread praise, Street Fight was nominated for an Oscar, an Emmy, and a Writer’s Guild of America award. The film also received prizes from the Tribeca Film Festival, the Chicago International Film Festival, the Ashland Independent Film Festival, and a host of other prominent stops on the festival circuit.


Curry followed up on the success of Street Fight with 2009’s Racing Dreams, a look at three young competitors on the World Karting Association’s National Series who had aspirations of professional NASCAR careers. Executive produced by action star Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson, Racing Dreams enjoyed success at as fast a pace as its subjects, taking home Best Documentary from the Tribeca, Nashville, and Jacksonville film festivals.


Curry’s 2011 offering, If a Tree Falls: A Story of the Earth Liberation Front, also received an Academy Award nomination and widespread festival recognition including Best Documentary Editing from the Sundance Film Festival and his second WGA nomination. The film is about an environmentalist facing possible life imprisonment for activism-motivated arson.


Mistaken for Strangers came next, a film that Curry executive produced and helped edit. For fans of the National band, it gave a hilarious look into the sibling rivalry between the film’s director, Tom Berninger, and the National’s lead singer, Tom’s brother Matt. The documentary opened the 2013 Tribeca Film Festival.


Curry’s most recent film, Point and Shoot (2014), also took the Grand Jury Prize for Best Documentary at Tribeca. Within it, Curry examined a young, sheltered American as his quest for self-discovery led him to a Libyan battlefield. The Gotham Independent Film, IDA, and Cinema Eye Honors awards also nominated the film. 


Shortly after receiving the Full Frame award for his contributions to documentary filmmaking, we caught up with Marshall Curry on camera. Reflecting upon his now-storied career, Curry noted his personal connection to Full Frame and his appreciation for the atmosphere the festival cultivates.



Marshall Curry on Full Frame’s Place in His Remarkable Career


As Curry described, “It’s a great festival. It’s really one of the very best, and the community of filmmakers is super informal here. It’s the kind of place where, as somebody who had never made a film at all, I could just go up and introduce myself to these famous filmmakers that I admired so much, and they’ll talk to you, and audiences are great. The informal nature of it makes it a special, special place. It kind of feels like a family.”


Curry also had plenty to say about the experience of watching the retrospective and seeing his five films come to life on the big screen again…and in person! “It’s been fun to just sort of revisit some of the old films, and the festival is really nice, they brought in some of the subjects from those films. It’s just kind of like a family reunion, almost.”


We avidly anticipate the new members, in the form of engaging documentary subjects, whom Curry will be adding to his family in the future. 


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