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Next Generation Indie Film Awards Present Director Rian Johnson with First-Ever Luminary Award

The Luminary Award recognizes a transformative figure in the industry whose work and journey are an inspiration to the filmmaking community.

HOLLYWOOD, Calif., July 18, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- Next Generation Indie Film Awards has presented a special award, the first-ever Luminary Award, to Academy Award-nominated American filmmaker Rian Johnson. The Luminary Award, Next Generation Indie Film Awards' highest honor, was presented as part of the annual Gala awards night. Winners were revealed in-person at Loews Hollywood Hotel in Los Angeles in an evening of celebration and laughter led by returning host and co-founder, actor and comedian Calum Worthy.

As an Academy-Award nominated filmmaker who wrote and directed the 2017 film Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Rian Johnson has received numerous accolades in recent years including the Empire Award for Best Director and the Saturn Award for Best Writing, both for Star Wars: The Last Jedi. In 2019, he received a Best Motion Picture nomination for the Golden Globes and a Best Original Screenplay nomination from the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences for Knives Out, a murder mystery he wrote, directed and produced.

Rian's career truly began in 2005 with Brick, his first feature, which he wrote and directed. Made for just $450,000, the film went on to win critical acclaim at the Sundance Film Festival and earned over $4 million at the box office. Johnson is currently in post-production on Knives Out 2 and the Peacock limited series Poker Face. Knives Out 2 will stream exclusively on Netflix after the streamer purchased the rights to the two sequels both written and directed by Johnson and with Daniel Craig reprising the role of southern detective Benoit Blanc.

"We are thrilled to be honoring Rian Johnson with our first-ever Luminary Award! Rian serves as an inspiration for many of the filmmakers who submit their films to our awards program. Like many of these filmmakers, Rian too started his career making short films. Since then, Rian has worked on major blockbuster hits and garnered high praise from critics while entertaining people from a multitude of backgrounds including our whole team who are professed enthusiasts of his film Knives Out! Rian is a true representation of a Luminary and we wish him much continued success," stated Next Generation Indie Film Awards Founder, Catherine Goulet.

The Award show's Executive Producer is Andrew Jenkins. Producers for the show include Aina Dumlao and Undercurrent Studios. Award categories include both features and short films, as well as awards for best music video, web series, first-time filmmaker, short by LGBTQ+ filmmaker, by BIPOC filmmaker, animated films, student films and best documentaries. For more information about the Next Generation Indie Film Awards: https://indiefilmawards.co

A full list of all the nominees and award winners and categories for the 2022 Next Generation Film Awards is available: ON THIS SITE.

Attendees of the 2022 Awards Gala included nominees, program judges, honorees, industry partners and sponsors from the leading film companies who continue to generously support the work of the Next Generation Indie Film Awards Foundation year-round.

Thanks to the generosity of the sponsors, the 2022 Grand Prize is a prize package worth over $150,000 in film production and rental credits to help the winner film their next project in Los Angeles. It includes rentals from Quixote and MBS Equipment Co., props from ISS Props, software from Final Draft, a camera package from Keslow Camera, post-production services from Sugar Studios LA, a special invite to the 2022 American Film Market's in-person event in Santa Monica, and more. The full list of prize package sponsors is available on the website HERE.


Formed in 2020, the first Next Generation Indie Film Awards gala was held in Hollywood in 2021. Catherine Goulet, a successful serial entrepreneur and visionary, founded and built the largest awards program for independent authors and publishers in the world, the Next Generation Indie Book Awards, which was launched in 2008.

The film awards evolved from the book awards program in 2020, when Catherine conceptualized the non-profit Next Generation Indie Film Awards Foundation, and Catherine teamed with Andrew Jenkins and her sister Therese 'Tag' Goulet to create the film awards program.

Tag Goulet is a film producer and arts patron who has funded more than 100 independent films from young filmmakers, including two from Santa Monica College's film program which screened at the Cannes Film Festival.

Andrew Jenkins is an award-winning actor and producer, and accomplished entrepreneur and business leader. Calum Worthy, a lifelong friend of Andrew's since the two starred on a television series together in their teens, joined the trio as a founding member of the non-profit in 2022.

Together, this multi-generational team of founders has a vested interest in the future of independent film and created a global awards program which celebrates outstanding work and helps independent filmmakers break through. The annual galas are a place where filmmakers can forge critical industry connections and gather to celebrate with fellow nominees.

The Next Generation Indie Film Awards Foundation is a non-profit organization which supports filmmakers from around the globe through its annual awards and other programs year-round. They endeavor to assist filmmakers at all stages of the filmmaking process by helping them reach an audience and aim to advance filmmakers' careers through services, education and access to resources. The organization has provided financial backing for more than 50 independent film projects since its formation.


Entries are being accepted now for the 2023 Next Generation Indie Film Awards. Award categories include both features and short films, as well as awards for best music video, web series, first-time filmmaker, short by LGBTQ+ filmmaker, by BIPOC filmmaker, animated films, student films and best documentaries.

More information about the awards, including how to enter is available here: https://indiefilmawards.co

Media Contact:
Andrew Jenkins


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SOURCE Next Generation Indie Film Awards Foundation