Aspen, CO (October 1, 2019) – Aspen Film announced today its balloted Audience Award winners for the 40th Anniversary Filmfest which ran September 23-29 at the Wheeler Opera House and the Isis Theatre in Aspen and the Crystal Theatre in Carbondale.

THE TIMES OF BILL CUNNINGHAM, directed by Mark Bozek, was chosen to receive the Audience Award for Best Film and JOJO RABBIT, directed by Taika Waititi, received Audience Special Mention.

“As we wrap the 40th edition of Filmfest, we are delighted to announce our Audience and Audience Special Mention Awards, which are quite indicative of the mood and of the community and the politics of our time, says Aspen Film Executive + Artistic Director Susan Wrubel. “THE TIMES OF BILL CUNNINGHAM is a delightful and moving story of a behind-the-scenes cultural icon who brought joy to so many through his work. JOJO RABBIT is a film that certainly polarized the audience with its bold satire, however, it’s message of tolerance and understanding ultimately rang through.”  Wrubel added, “Aspen Film is so proud to have the ability to bring films of this caliber to this community. The response to Filmfest was overwhelming, and our films sparked a lot of dialogue, which is one of our goals.”

Timed to the spectacular fall color in the Rocky Mountains, Aspen Film presented a seven-day showcase of independent and big-screen cinema featuring 23 features and documentaries from the international festival circuit punctuated by filmmaker guests, in-depth discussions and education programming. For FilmEducates, this year’s participants were Aspen Middle School, Aspen Country Day, CMC Aspen, Colorado Rocky Mountain School and Yampah Mountain High School. There was also a special in-school screening of the world premiere, change-influencing WeRiseUP for students and many of the student groups came to the theatre for the influential and inspirational docs CHANGING THE GAME and MOVING STORIES.

To commemorate the 40th anniversary, Aspen Film presented its first-ever Lifetime Achievement Award for Excellence in the Cinematic Arts to Bob Rafelson – renegade and ground-breaking director, producer, and writer whose career spans four decades. Rafelson was the first recipient of Aspen Film’s Independent by Nature award in 1999 so it was only fitting that 20 years later he was honored again, looking back at his incredible career. In conjunction with the tribute, Rafelson’s 1990 film MOUNTAINS OF THE MOON was screened during the festival.

Aspen Film will continue its fall celebration of film with its monthly Indie Showcase screening of LINDA RONSTADT: THE SOUND OF MY VOICE in partnership with Metropolitan Theatres on Wednesday, October 2, 7:30pm at the Isis Theatre (406 E. Hopkins Ave.).

For the complete list of Aspen Film programs and upcoming calendar of events, visit

About the Winning Films:

Directed by Mark Bozek, USA, 2018, 74 minutes

Narrated by Sarah Jessica Parker, THE TIMES OF BILL CUNNINGHAM features incredible photographs chosen from over 3 million previously unpublicized images and documents from iconic street photographer and fashion historian Bill Cunningham. Told in Cunningham’s own words from a recently unearthed 1994 interview, the photographer chronicles, in his customarily cheerful and plainspoken manner, moonlighting as a milliner in France during the Korean War, his unique relationship with First Lady Jackie Kennedy, his four decades at The New York Times and his democratic view of fashion and society.

Director’s statement from Mark Bozek:

“I am thrilled to receive Aspen Film Festival’s Audience Award. Grateful to this amazing festival’s 40th Anniversary and to Greenwich Entertainment for making it all happen. Onward!”

THE TIMES OF BILL CUNNINGHAM will roll out theatrically on Valentine’s Day, February 14th beginning in New York and Los Angeles.

Directed by Taika Waititi, USA, 2019, 108 minutes

Writer director Taika Waititi (“THOR: RAGNROK,” “HUNT FOR THE WILDERPEOPLE”), brings his signature style of humor and pathos to his latest film, JOJO RABBIT, a World War II satire that follows a lonely German boy (Roman Griffin Davis as Jojo) whose world view is turned upside down when he discovers his single mother (Scarlett Johansson) is hiding a young Jewish girl (Thomasin McKenzie) in their attic. Aided only by his idiotic imaginary friend, Adolf Hitler (Taika Waititi), Jojo must confront his blind nationalism.

JOJO RABBIT opens theatrically on October 18th.