The Act of Killing makes an impact

AWARD. "Its brave brilliance has already led to tremendous impact, almost single-handedly opening the painful dialogue on Indonesia’s genocide". Joshua Oppenheimer's "The Act of Killing" wins the PUMA Impact Award 2013.

At a ceremony held on Wednesday, 13 November, at the TimesCenter in New York, the PUMA jury announced Joshua Oppenheimer's "The Act of Killing" as the winner of the 2013 PUMA Impact Award.

The film's Danish producer, Signe Byrge Sørensen, reports from New York upon receiving the award:

"It's so great. However, it's also important to say that the award, first of all, goes to all the people we work with in Indonesia and who have been instrumental in getting the film out there in order for it to be seen and discussed in all kinds of contexts. They are the ones who should have been on stage tonight."

The Jury said of the winning film:

"'The Act of Killing' is a staggering and unique work of art that stands above time and place and will enrich and empower everyone who has the privilege to see it for many years to come. Its brave brilliance has already led to tremendous impact, almost single-handedly opening the painful dialogue on Indonesia's genocide, which claimed over one million lives. As a film, it has the potential to change the genre, and as art, it resurrects the deep insight into our nature offered by the 'banality of evil'. In doing so, its impact moves well beyond Indonesia, providing a contribution to all humanity." 

About the PUMA Impact Award

The €50,000 award celebrates and supports the documentary film that has made the most significant positive impact on society or the environment each year. Half the cash prize rewards the filmmakers for their creative efforts, while the other half is channeled to support the ongoing efforts of the film’s campaign for change. The award is created in partnership between Puma and Britdoc.

The shortlist of five documentaries also included "Bully," "Give Up Tomorrow," "The Interrupters" and "The Invisible War." 

The jury consists of actress Susan Sarandon, actor and director Gael García Bernal, Avaaz Executive Director Ricken Patel, journalist and author Eric Schlosser, and author Zadie Smith.

The Puma Impact Award press release

Read more

Joshau Oppenheimer talks about the film's effect on Indonesians:
Indonesians are Coming to Grips with Their Past

Indiewire takes a closer look at the impact strategies of the five PUMA nominees:
How Do We Measure the Impact of Documentaries?: Data from the Puma Impact Award Nominees