Jane Mercer Researcher of the Year Award 2019

Here are the nominees for this year’s Jane Mercer Researcher of the Year award, honouring researchers who have made significant contributions to productions requiring archival footage. We look forward to announcing this year’s winners at the Awards Ceremony on June 20th.

The Jane Mercer Researcher of the Year award is kindly sponsored by AP.

Peter Scott

For A Dangerous Dynasty: House of Assad

Production Company: 72 Films

“To tell the story of how Bashar & Asma came to rule the Middle East, we scoured a number of archive houses around the world to find unseen footage, including fruitful finds in Lebanon and Russia. We wanted to make a definitive series on the Syrian regime and feel we did with extensive b-roll and previously unseen footage.”

Hannah Shepard

For The Rape of Recy Taylor

Production Companies: Augusta Films LLC, Transform Films Inc. in association with Artemis

“As the Archival Researcher, I worked in numerous national state and local archives, including the National Archives and the Library of Congress. I took my leads on what to pursue from the Corbitt family, who knew their own story best. This was the research project of a lifetime. At once extremely challenging, disturbing, enlightening, and humbling.”

Susan Johnson

For Quincy

Production Companies: Le Train Train, Bob’s Your Uncle, Tribeca

“As the Archival Producer, I logged a total of 1030 hours on the project and had the help of three other researchers at various times over a period of 2 years. There was approximately 2,000 hours of archival material and a total of 89 third-party licenses were executed. The primary skills employed in the sourcing of the material were: patience, persistence, and a willingness to beg.”

Rich Remsberg

For Bobby Kennedy for President, The King & Love Means Zero

“The sheer volume and complexity of this project called for special treatment. Each of the 4 hour episodes contained 80 to 95 minutes of archival material. The strong directive for never-before-scene footage required deep dives (and costly transfers) at the networks and other conventional sources, as well as a nationwide sweep of local TV news collections, where much of the yield came from rusted cans that not seen light of day for 50 or 60 years.” on Bobby Kennedy for President.

Join us at the Awards Ceremony

The 2019 edition of the FOCAL Awards will celebrate all of the above nominations and more on June 20th 2019 at the Troxy in London. We’ll also be presenting filmmaker Julien Temple with this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award. Whether you’re a nominee, an industry professional or just someone who loves archival film, we hope you’ll join us in celebrating this year’s achievements.
Early bird tickets are available until May 12th, and tickets include welcome drinks, a stylish 3 course meal, post-ceremony drinks and plenty of networking opportunities with nominees, curators, researchers and other industry professionals. We hope to see you there!

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