HSDFF delves beyond the screening experience to plumb the depths of each social issue explored by its selected films. Robust panels, conversations, and networking opportunities fuel this remarkable festival experience, perfectly complementing the boundary-pushing, mind-expanding content of its big-screen discoveries. This year, alongside its varied slate of documentaries in every category, HSDFF will present a slate of new awards, including Best Sports or Outdoor Film, a Voice of Documentary Award, a Lifetime Achievement Honor for Narrators of Documentary, as well as an award for Best Voice Performance by a Narrator in a Documentary. Emphasizing artistry and provocative content well above a film's commercial potential, HSDFF is proud to provide an idea-driven festival in which talent and curiosity take center stage.
During its distinguished history, HSDFF has welcomed some of the most noteworthy names in the world of documentary film, including Robert Kenner, Ken Burns, James Earl Jones, Les Blank, Albert Maysles, Geraldine Chaplin, Barbara Kopple, Robert Drew, and Roger Nygard. Numerous films screened at HSDFF have found their way to great success. At this year's Academy Awards ceremony, the feature doc The Invisible War and the short film Kingspoint - both featured at HSDFF - snagged Oscar nominations.