$25,000 prize awarded for her work on Incorruptible documentary
Filmmaker E. Chai Vasarhelyi, who co-directed the hit documentary Meru with husband Jimmy Chin, is the recipient of a prestigious grant from Film Independent.
She won the Truer Than Fiction Award at a ceremony on Saturday in recognition of her work on the documentary Incorruptible, which explored the 2011 youth-led pro-democracy protests in Senegal.
The award, which comes with a $25,000 "unrestricted" prize, "is presented to an emerging director of non-fiction features who has not received significant recognition," according to a press release from Film Independent.
Vasarhelyi was chosen over several finalists: Mohammed Ali Naqvi and Hemal Trivedi who directed Among the Believers and Elizabeth Giamatti and Alex Sichel who made A Woman Like Me.
Vasarhelyi directed Incorruptible before beginning work on Meru with internationally-renowned climber Jimmy Chin. The two were married in 2013.
Meru, which has made the Oscar shortlist, earned over $2 mil. during its theatrical run. It is now available on iTunes and Amazon streaming services. The film is one of six documentaries nominated for the Film Independent Spirit Awards, which will be presented February 27.
Matthew Carey is a documentary filmmaker and journalist. His work has appeared on CNN, CNN.com, TheWrap.com, NBCNews.com and Documentary.org.