At the 2015 Sundance Film Festival, the first-ever Horizon Award was presented to Syracuse University student Verónica Ortiz-Calderón.

UPDATE: The inaugural Horizon Award winning film, Y Ya No Te Gustas (And You Don’t Like Yourself Anymore) premiered tonight at a reception at The Sundance House Presented by HP. It is now available on Vimeo.

January 22, 2015

Inaugural Horizon Award to Honor Up-And-Coming Female Filmmaker – Verónica Ortiz-Calderón

PARK CITY, UTAH – The inaugural Horizon Award will be presented to Syracuse University student Verónica Ortiz-Calderón for her film Y Ya No Te Gustas (And You Don’t Like Yourself Anymore). The award’s co-founders, producers Lynette Howell, Christine Vachon, and Cassian Elwes, made the announcement today at the Sundance Film Festival.

The Horizon Award was created to celebrate and provide mentorship opportunities for talented, up-and-coming female filmmakers. The prize includes a $10,000 scholarship, a paid trip to the Sundance Film Festival, and the opportunity to meet and be mentored by Howell (The Place Beyond the Pines, Blue Velvet, Half Nelson), Vachon (Boys Don’t Cry, One Hour Photo, Far From Heaven), and Elwes (All is Lost, Dallas Buyers Club, Margin Call) while at the festival.

The award will be presented to Ortiz-Calderón by Sharon Waxman, founder, CEO, and Editor in Chief of The Wrap, on Monday, January 26, at a reception co-hosted by CreativeFuture and the Sundance House Presented by HP. Waxman has called the Horizon Award, and what it stands for, “a cause that I believe in.” The winning short, which was selected from more than 400 submissions, will premier at the reception.

The 2015 Horizon Award’s corporate and organizational co-sponsors include The Black List, The Creative Mind Group, CreativeFuture, Indiegogo, The Sundance Institute, Twitter, Vimeo, and Women in Film.

The idea for the award came following the release of a 2012 Women in Film study, which showed that women comprised only 9% of directors among the top 250 domestic grossing movies worldwide.

“That statistic is terrible, and we are trying to figure out how to do something about it,” said award co-sponsor and producer Christine Vachon.

“We hope to help level the playing field for women in the film business and help foster the talents of young, female directors,” said award co-sponsor and producer Lynette Howell.

“One of the goals of this award,” says Elwes, “is to identify young, female directors early enough in their careers so that we can help them overcome the hurdles that they will surely face.”

The jury was comprised of influential film industry producers, executives, and directors, and reviewed more than 400 submissions from 200 colleges and universities worldwide, including the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, Columbia, China, and more.

Full List of Jurors:

Stephanie Allain – Producer (Hustle & Flow, Black Snake Moan)
Dori Begley – Magnolia Pictures (SVP Acquisitions)
Arianna Bocco – IFC Films (SVP Acquisitions)
Robbie Brenner – Relativity Media (President, Production)
Effie Brown – Producer (Dear White People)
Kim Fox – Annapurna International (President, International)
Eda Kowan – Lionsgate (SVP Acquisitions)
Gina Kwon – Producer (The Good Girl, Youth In Revolt)
Helen Lee-Kim – Good Universe (President, International)
Laura Lewis – Creative Artists Agency (Talent Agent)
Alix Madigan – Anonymous Content (Head, Feature Films)
Heather Rae – Appaloosa Pictures (Partner)
Laura Rister – Untitled Entertainment (Producer – Lawless, Margin Call)
Rena Ronson – United Talent Agency (Talent Agent)
Michelle Satter – The Sundance Institute (Director, Feature Film Program)
Cathy Schulman – Mandalay Independent (President)
Lauren Selig – Executive Producer (Lone Survivor, A Walk Among the Tombstones)
Mary Jane Skalski – Producer (The Station Agent, Mysterious Skin)
Lara Thompson – E1 Entertainment (SVP, Worldwide Acquisitions)
Ruth Vitale – CreativeFuture (Executive Director)
Pam Williams – Producer (Lee Daniels’ The Butler, Malibu Country)
Lisa Wilson – Executive Producer (The Words, Stuck in Love)
Hanna Weg – Producer (Septembers of Shiraz)

Directors narrowed down the top 65 to 14:

Anna Boden
Gina Prince-Bythewood
Francesca Gregorini
Rose Troche

For more information, visit:


Guido Gotz
MPRM Communications