Films in Competition

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2019 Jury

Allison Abbate

Allison Abbate is an executive vice president at Warner Animation Group. Prior to assuming her post at WAG, Abbate was an executive producer on the global blockbuster The LEGO® Movie, and a producer on Tim Burton’s Frankenweenie and Corpse Bride, Wes Anderson’s Fantastic Mr. Fox, and Brad Bird’s Iron Giant.

Suzanne Buirgy

Suzanne Buirgy has created an impressive roster of credits in her 20-year career in Animation and Visual Effects. Suzanne began her career at Digital Domain, one of the premiere VFX houses in the country, where she spent nine years serving as DPM on a variety of films including How the Grinch Stole Christmas, XXX, The […]

Justin Chang

Justin Chang is a film critic for the Los Angeles Times and for NPR’s “Fresh Air”,” and a regular contributor to KPCC’s “FilmWeek.” Before joining The Times, he was chief film critic at Variety. He is the author of the book “FilmCraft: Editing” and serves as chair of the National Society of Film Critics and […]

Matthew A. Cherry

Chicago native Matthew A. Cherry is a former NFL wide receiver turned filmmaker who played for the Jacksonville Jaguars, Cincinnati Bengals, Carolina Panthers and the Baltimore Ravens. In 2007 he retired and moved to LA to pursue a career in entertainment landing work as a production assistant on over 40 commercials and as a director […]

Melissa Cobb

Melissa Cobb is Vice President, Kids and Family at Netflix, the world’s leading internet entertainment service. Cobb leads the content team responsible for bringing kids and family titles, both live-action and animated, to Netflix members in 190 countries around the world. Prior to Netflix, Cobb was Chief Creative Officer for Oriental DreamWorks, where she oversaw […]

Peter Debruge

Peter Debruge is Variety’s Chief International Film Critic. He first joined the Variety team in 2005 as a features editor, compiling the magazine’s annual 10 Actors, Directors and Screenwriters to Watch lists as well as overseeing a range of special editorial sections, including those tied to the magazine’s philanthropy-driven Power of Youth and Power of Comedy events.

Carolyn Giardina

Carolyn Giardina is Tech Editor at The Hollywood Reporter and writes its Behind the Screen blog. In 2015, Carolyn was presented American Cinema Editors’ Robert Wise Award, which recognizes a journalist for contributions to film editing. She was the 2011 recipient of the International Cinematographers Guild’s Technicolor William A. Fraker Award for journalistic contributions to cinematography.

Jorge R. Gutiérrez

Jorge R. Gutiérrez is a painter, writer and director born in Mexico City and raised in Tijuana. Gutierrez has completed various films, cartoons, and paintings exploring his love of Mexican pop and folk culture.

Jennifer Yuh Nelson

Jennifer Yuh Nelson made her feature film directorial debut with Kung Fu Panda 2 (2011), which earned more than $665 million at the worldwide box-office. She continued on to direct the franchise’s successful follow-up Kung Fu Panda 3 (2016). Nelson has lent her talents to a variety of DreamWorks Animation pictures, including as head of […]

Charles Solomon

An internationally respected critic and historian of animation, Charles Solomon has written on the subject for the New York Times, Newsweek (Japan), Rolling Stone, the Los Angeles Times, The International Herald Tribune, Variety, the Manchester Guardian, and National Public Radio.

Mabel Tam

Mabel Tam is VP/Head Film Buyer of LANDMARK THEATRES. Landmark Theatres is the nation’s largest theatre chain dedicated to exhibiting and marketing independent film. A 16 year veteran of the entertainment industry, she is a graduate of UCLA and resides in LA with her family.

Anne Thompson

Born and raised in New York, IndieWire Editor at Large Anne Thompson has been a contributor to the New York Times, Washington Post, The Observer, and Wired. She has served as film columnist at Variety and deputy editor of Variety.com. Anne was the Deputy Film Editor at The Hollywood Reporter, the West Coast Editor of Premiere, a Senior Writer at Entertainment Weekly, and West Coast Editor for Film Comment.