The inagural award, launched by sports brand Puma and Channel 4 Britdoc Foundation, aims to recognise the documentary that has made the most significant positive impact on society.
Rupert Murray’s The End Of The Line has won the inaugural Puma Creative Impact Award.
The award, part of an ongoing partnership between Puma and Channel 4 Britdoc Foundation, carries a €50,000 cash prize, half of which goes to the film’s director Rupert Murray, the other half to the cause highlighted in the documentary. The End Of The Line highlights the problem of overfishing in the world’s seas.
Anders Østergaard’s Burma VJ: Reporting from a Closed Country, which follows the Burma monks uprising against the military regime in 2007, was awarded a Special Commendation for its social impact and a €25,000 prize.
The awards were presented at a ceremony held at London’s Mandarin Oriental hotel, hosted by Channel 4 presenter Jon Snow.
The End Of The Line was chosen from a shortlist which also featured The Age of Stupid, The Reckoning: The Battle for the International Criminal Court and Trouble the Water. The shortlist had been whittled down from over 70 submissions.
The award was judged by a jury made up of Queen Noor of Jordan, Morgan Spurlock, Ford Foundation’s Orlando Bagwell, musician and activist Emmanuel Jal and Loretta Minghella OBE.
Each film was assessed for its social impact including how the film had increased awareness of an issue, created political and corporate impact or change in a corporate policy, provided an effective fundraising tool and forged new partnerships in civil society.
“Puma are offering us their platform. They have 5 million followers on facebook, so for them to get behind documentaries and draw attention to what we are doing is enormously exciting,” Britdoc’c chief executive Jess Search told Screen before the awards ceremony.
Jochen Zeitz, CEO sport & lifestyle group and CSO of PPR and chairman of the board of PUMA, explained the decision to get behind documentaries: “We believe that documentary films can really create change and contribute to social change. Nothing is more powerful than the moving picture. We felt that there was really nothing out there that praised and valued documentaries which impact change.”
Rupert Murray, director of The End of The Line, added that the Puma Creative Impact award was one that “truly understands and recognizes our investment - I mean I nearly died in a fishing net in Peru, getting shots of some anchovies - to change behaviour for the greater good.”