The North Carolina festival will honour actors David Oyelowo and Brady Corbet and multi-hyphenate Amy Seimetz on Apr 20.

The Spark Award was created as an extension of the festival’s Altered States: New Directions In American Cinema programme, which launched last year to unearth new filmmakers and performers.

“These artists are absolute dynamos of creative energy and regardless of which world-class festival they attend, their films are catalysts for conversation,” programme coordinator Christopher Holmes said.

“When thinking about films that truly embody the daring ethos of independent filmmaking right now, these three just shared a knack for always being at the epicenter of the conversation.”

Andrew Rodgers, the festival’s executive director, added: “With our growing reputation as a strong regional festival that continually strives for innovation and excellence, we thought it appropriate to recognise some of the talented actors and actresses who are themselves creating sparks within their craft.”

RiverRun is set to run from Apr 13-22 in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.