Local Spotlight Awards

Belleville Downtown DocFest Local Filmmaker Awards Program

The 2023 12th Annual film festival included a selection of seven films created by local filmmakers. These films are chosen to spotlight their work and to turn the camera lens on all that our area has to offer.

The Quinte region is home to some amazing talent and incredible stories and DocFest is incredibly proud to be able to give these artists the platform they need and deserve to have their work seen.

DocFest compensates local filmmakers in accordance with the Independent Media Arts Alliance and Canadian Artists’ Representation/Le Front des artistes canadiens fee schedules.

The DocFest Award winners for Best Local Feature Documentary and Best Short Documentary are presented below.

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Best Local Feature Documentary Award Winner

Tess Girard

Best Local Short Documentary Award Winner

Victor Cooper
Full – A Recipe for Happiness

Festival Board Chair Holly Dewar, Bay of Quinte Regional Marketing Board Executive Director Dug Stevenson, and 2023 Best Local Short Film winner Tess Girard, for Shelter.


Audience Choice Award for Best Local Film, and the Audience Choice Award for Best Canadian Film

Amy Chyan
Threads of Love


Best Local Documentary Award Winner

Brittany Ollerenshaw
Harvesting Dreams


Best Local Documentary Award Winners

Shelby Lisk
Manasie Akpaliapik: An Inuit Carver Story

Tess Girard
A Place To Call Home


Best Local Documentary Award Winners

Yoshi Aoki
As Long As They’ll Listen

Sean Scally
Playing With Fire


Best Local Feature Documentary Award Winner

Tess Girard
As The Crow Flies

Best Local Short Documentary Winners

Angela Bell and Aaron Bell Downforce, Street Luger


1st Prize

Sean Scally
Heritage Cramahe Moment: Charles Smith Rutherford VC

2nd Prize

Adam Gray
Ty Conn: My Brother the Outlaw

3rd Prize

Doug Knutson
Hollywood of the North


1st Prize

Loyalist Foursquared

2nd Prize

Ben Quaiff
Move for Inclusion

3rd Prize

James A. Smith and Laura J.Forth
Lest We Forget


1st Prize

Lenny Epstein
Til the Cows Come Home

2nd Prize

Aaron Bell
Crawford: Family of Champions

3rd Prize

Joel George


1st Prize

Adam Gray and Andrew Gray
Fly Colt Fly