May 2, 2012
Past ACE Grant Winners
Learn about films that have been awarded The HSUS's Animal Content in Entertainment grant
Established in 2006, The HSUS's Animal Content in Entertainment (ACE) Documentary Film Grant has attracted hundreds of submissions on a vast array of animal protections issues.
Selected by ACE staff and a panel of media professionals -- whom over the years have included representatives from PBS, Animal Planet, National Geographic, and HBO -- the winning projects have covered topics ranging from urban wildlife to animals in entertainment.
Director Martin Guinness' film about captive moon bears won the first-place prize in the 2011 ACE Grant. Profiling animal rescuer Jill Robinson, Cages of Shame follows her on an exciting journey as she shuts down a Chinese bear bile farm.
*2011 Second-Place Winner: The Eyes of Thailand
*2011 Third-Place Winner: Whale Like Me
Directed by Lisa Leeman and produced by Jordana Glick-Franzheim and Cristina Colissimo, One Lucky Elephant follows the nine-year journey to find Flora, a retired circus elephant, her new home. This film is a thought-provoking look at our complex relationships with animals that asks the hard questions about keeping elephants and other wild animals in captivity. It aired on the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN) in 2011 and is now available on DVD.
2009: Cinema Chimp
In profiling the bizarre Palm Springs lifestyle of Cheeta, the chimpanzee “star” of film and TV, director David Grabias' Cinema Chimp goes on to explore the debate over the ethics of using non-human primate “actors” in the entertainment industry. By revealing the disturbing truth about the fate of many primate performers, we get a glimpse into the controversial world of primates in captivity and why these highly social and intelligent animals belong in the wild.
Produced and directed by Michael Webber, the film chronicles the dangerous epidemic of keeping wild animals as pets, threatening their owners, their communities, and the animal's welfare. Told through the extraordinary day-to-day work of a suburban police officer and one-man exotic animal rescuer, this is a compelling look at a nationwide problem of exotic pet ownership. The film hits theaters around the U.S. in spring 2011. It is now on DVD and Netflix.
*2008 Finalist: The Tiger Next Door
2007: The Concrete Jungle
The Concrete Jungle, directed by Don Bernier, examines the relationship between humans and urban animals worldwide. From biologists to everyday city dwellers, we get first-hand accounts of the increasing conflicts between wildlife and humans, and what is being done to reach a peaceful coexistence.
2006: Cougars on the Edge
Director Janice Jensen's Cougars on the Edge explores the habitat encroachment of the cougars in the Santa Monica Mountains, which border one of the most heavily traveled freeways in the Los Angeles area. Using the technology of radio transmitters and GPS tracking devices, National Park Service biologists get a unique perspective into the lives and behavior of these elusive cats.