Search form

Winners Announced for 26th Dusty Awards

Claire van Ryzin’s ‘Hotbod’ wins the award for Outstanding Animated Film at the 26th Dusty Film & Animation Festival; Kyra Kupetsky and Elena Manetta awarded Outstanding Achievement in Character Animation.

NEW YORK -- The School of Visual Arts (SVA) has announced the winners of its 2015 Dusty Film & Animation Festival and Awards, now in its 26th year, at the Dusty Awards held May 12, 2015 at New York City’s SVA Theatre. Highlighting the work of more than 100 filmmakers and animators graduating from the BFA Film & Video and BFA Animation departments, the annual awards were bestowed at this event. This year’s Dusty presenters included notables from the world of film, television and animation, including Kathleen Turner, Daniel Minahan, Alex Kupershmidt, Deborah Dickson, Chris Prynoski, Alexander Dinelaris, Mary Harron, Jesse Averna, Martin Ahlgren, Chris Newman, Andre Degas, Alexis Alexanian and Zach Mandinach. The event was hosted by media personality Valerie Smaldone.  

Headlining Sponsors are AbelCine, Adorama Rental Company, Animation Magazine, B&H Photo, Bryan Singer, Carlos Saldanha/BottleCap Productions, Emmett/Furla/Oasis Films, Feature Systems/Kits and Expendables, Foto Care, Gotham Sound, IFP, New York Women in Film & Television, Nice Shoes, Nickelodeon, Rota6, SCS Agency, SVA Campus Store, Technicolor PostWorks New York, and Toon Boom Animation. One hundred percent of the sponsors’ donations will benefit thesis students in the form of grants and in-kind awards.

The 2015 DUSTY Winners are:


  • Outstanding Film: Paola Bernardini, Citta' dei Sogni
  • Outstanding Documentary: Exa Zim, Alexa to Exa
  • Outstanding Achievement in Directing: Lorenzo Zanini, Sexy Jalapeños
  • Outstanding Achievement in Screenwriting: Meaghan Jane Cleary, The Latchkey Kids
  • Outstanding Achievement in Cinematography: Yana Karin, Citta' dei Sogni
  • Outstanding Achievement in Editing: Jared Simon, Citta' dei Sogni
  • Gotham Honorary Sound Grants: Henry Myers, Brian Perry, Sven Rethemeier
  • New York Women in Film & Television Award: Paola Bernardini, Citta' dei Sogni
  • Independent Filmmaker Project Award (IFP): James Camali and Joshua Barclay, Gary
  • Human Spirit Award: Alexandra Kopec, The Artificial Womb
  • Special Jury Award – Film: Rory Pfotenhauer, Japanese Fantasies


  • Outstanding Animated Film: Claire van Ryzin, HOTBOD
  • Outstanding Achievement in Character Animation: Kyra Kupetsky, The Thrill of the Haunt and Elena Manetta, On Schedule
  • Outstanding Achievement in Animation Production Design: Chelsea Quinlan, WNDERLUST
  • Special Jury Award – Animation: Rena Parisi, hiccup

“We are so proud, in this 26th year of the Dustys, to recognize these promising filmmakers and animators,” said Reeves Lehmann, chair of the BFA Film & Video and BFA Animation programs at SVA. “We are excited to celebrate the successes of our students with many guests from the worlds of film and animation.”

“We’d also like to extend a big thank you to our many generous sponsors and supporters, some of whom have been with us for many years, and to the spectacular SVA Theatre crew for collaborating on another year of stellar events,” added Festival producer/director, SVA faculty member and independent film producer Annie Flocco.

The 26th Annual Dusty Film & Animation Festival and Awards kicked off Saturday, May 9 and ran through Tuesday, May 12. The program included screenings of more than 100 films, documentaries and animations, culminating with the awards ceremony. Over its more than a quarter-century history, the Dustys has launched the careers of numerous SVA graduates, many of whom have gone on to earn international recognition on the film scene.

School of Visual Arts has been a leader in the education of artists, designers and creative professionals for more than six decades. With a faculty of distinguished working professionals, dynamic curriculum and an emphasis on critical thinking, SVA is a catalyst for innovation and social responsibility. Comprised of more than 6,000 students at its Manhattan campus and 35,000 alumni in 100 countries, SVA also represents one of the most influential artistic communities in the world.

Source: School of Visual Arts

Jennifer Wolfe's picture

Formerly Editor-in-Chief of Animation World Network, Jennifer Wolfe has worked in the Media & Entertainment industry as a writer and PR professional since 2003.