Guide to the Festival

The Frameline36 AT&T Audience Awards

Since 1984 our audience has been responsible for selecting the Best Feature Film, Best Documentary Film and Best Short Film of the Festival. Putting the power in the audience's hands, the Frameline36 AT&T Audience Awards offer cash prizes to the favorite Feature ($1000), Documentary ($1000) and Short ($500) in the festival. Audience members will be able to vote via text message from any text-enabled mobile device.

If you love a film, simply text the film's voting code to 55333 within six hours of the start of the screening. To find the film's voting code, look on-screen after the show, check out the film's Frameline36 online description, download the Frameline36 iPhone App, or ask a staff member or a volunteer. And remember you get just one vote per film per mobile device. Standard messaging rates may apply (a small price to pay to support LGBT filmmakers).

Frameline's Juried Awards

Frameline has a long history of supporting outstanding films and filmmakers, and we continue that tradition with our juried awards for First Feature and Best Documentary of Frameline36!

Click here to download a list of all text voting codes at Frameline36.

The Frameline Award

Established in 1986, the Frameline Award is given every year to a person or entity that has made a major contribution to LGBT representation in film, television, or the media arts. Past honorees range from film historian and author Vito Russo, to Hong Kong director Stanley Kwan, avant-garde lesbian filmmaker Barbara Hammer, drag artiste extraordinaire Divine, producer Christine Vachon, long-time leader of the Festival and the organization Michael Lumpkin, and producer/distributor Marcus Hu.

This year, Frameline's Board and Staff are proud to present the Frameline Award to B. Ruby Rich.

When she introduced the term “New Queer Cinema” to LGBT film culture some twenty years ago, renowned critic and scholar, B. Ruby Rich was simply acting in the line of duty; reporting on what was timely and significant in moving image culture, and in queer culture.

Happily, this time the news was good: queer audiences faced the promise of a cinema that might finally do justice to the complexity of LGBT lives, and—as a bonus—one that the mainstream film establishment could little afford, nor in fact manage, to ignore. That we are still talking about "New Queer Cinema" in its twentieth year, in a culture so (ironically) fixated on the "new," is a testament to Rich's insight.

For years an essential contributor to American and international film discourse, Rich has fashioned a unique role within film culture. Currently a Professor in the Film and Digital Media Department at the University of California, Santa Cruz, she is also a fixture within the worlds that she documents. Her body of work combines the rapt enthusiasm of the most ardent fan with the discerning eye of the critic, and the long view of the historian. The incisiveness of her writing and speaking on these topics (not to mention its accessibility) bespeaks a palpable urgency, without compromising a sense of excitement for the possibility, and importance, of having fun at the movies.

More than this, Rich situates films not only as artifacts, but as human exchanges within specific social contexts and historical moments. Her attentiveness to the way films play out within culture is best symbolized by her presence at film festivals; moderating panel discussions, posting reports about emerging talents and trends, and helping to foster an experience of film as something shared. Not incidentally, she has pointed out the powerful place that LGBT film festivals have come to assume in queer lives, not as mere backdrops but as new generators of community.

Illuminating film history, the American independent scene, world cinema trends, and situating queer film within these contexts, Rich has made a salutary and indispensable contribution to a community’s sense of its own achievements and challenges; holding our feet to the fire while directing our eyes to the screen. We are the richer for it.