The Trials of Muhammad Ali nominated for FOCAL International Award

The Trials of Muhammad Ali has been nominated for the Best Use of Sports Footage at the FOCAL International Awards.

The FOCAL (Federation of Commercial Audio Visual Libraries) International awards are "the leading and most complete set of awards for the archive footage business in the world today." The 11th annual awards ceremony takes place in London on April 20th 2014. Realscreen covered the announcement.

In our submission to the awards, we wrote: "Ali's boxing matches bear political and cultural significance, paralleling his fights outside the ring. Physically and verbally, Ali fights back, defending his religion and name change. To punctuate importance of these moments, we layer commentary by figures like Malcolm X, who references "historic things taking place ... not a heavyweight championship fight physically, there was more to it." For footage quality and accuracy, we pursued primary sources, many times forgoing talking heads for archival footage that showed, not told. In general, we undertook an exhaustive archival footage search, uncovering gems that oftentimes had not been seen in more than 50 years."

Producer Rachel Pikelny, Director Bill Siegel and Editor Aaron Wickenden are very proud of the extensive archival research done for The Trials of Muhammad Ali and it's presentation in the film, which has already been awarded with the International Documentary Association 2013 ABC News Video Source award.

Free screenings of The Trials of Muhammad Ali are currently happening all over the U.S. thanks to ITVS Community Cinema. See our full events listings for more details. This Spring we are looking forward to our U.S. television premiere on Independent Lens on April 14th at 10 PM. Following on April 22nd will be the release of The Trials of Muhammad Ali DVD, which will be full of special features and educational resources!