December 19, 2012 9:30 am
Steve James & Alex Kotlowitz's film, which aired on PBS through WGBH's FRONTLINE in February 2012, was praised by the awards committee for providing "new understanding of a stubborn societal problem through strong characters and excellent reporting, shooting and editing."
The film is one of 14 documentaries and news reports honored with Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Award Silver Batons this year for "the strength of their reporting, storytelling and impact in the public interest." The awards are seen as the broadcast journalism equivalent of the Pultizer Prize.
This is the first time in Kartemquin history that one of our films has won the award; we could not be more delighted. It caps a stunning year of success for The Interrupters in 2012, which began with winning the Best Documentary award at the Independent Spirit Awards and the Cinema Eye Honors (where Steve James also won Best Director), and saw the film reach millions through it's FRONTLINE broadcast.
Throughout this year the film has continued an extensive outreach and engagement campaign that has seen it screen across the world in over 400 community-organized screenings at schools, youth centers, libraries and venues including prisons and juvenile detention centers. The impact of the film has been apparent in coordinated efforts by the Mayors of major cities such as Chicago, Philadelphia, New Orleans, Oakland and Toronto to host special, free public screenings of the film, as well the legislation that saw the City of Chicago fund the group CeaseFire (now known as Cure Violence) for the very first time. Read more about the film's social impact.
Watch a new video made specially for the duPont-Columbia University Award, in which Steve James and Alex Kotlowitz explain their process in making the film, and their feelings on its continued impact.