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Five Burning Questions: Lizzo Debuts at No. 2 on Billboard 200 With ‘Special’ & Tops Hot 100 With ‘About Damn Time’



Lizzo has the top-debuting album on the Billboard 200 albums chart this week (dated July 30), with her latest album Special bowing at No. 2 on the chart — behind only Bad Bunny’s Un Verano Sin Ti blockbuster — with 69,000 equivalent album units moved. Both numbers are up from her 2019 breakthrough album Cuz I Love You, which bowed at No. 6 with 41,000 units.

The set’s presence does not make an enormous impact on the Billboard Hot 100 in its debut week; only “2 Be Loved (Am I Ready)” is the only track from Special to bow on the chart this frame, appearing at No. 84. However, advance single “About Damn Time,” which has been slowly ascending the chart for months, completes its climb to the No. 1 spot — marking Lizzo’s second No. 1 on the chart, following “Truth Hurts” in 2019.

How should Lizzo feel about her first-week numbers? And which song from Special might follow “About Damn Time” to single success? Billboard staffers discuss these questions and more below:

1. Lizzo’s Special debuts at No. 2 this week with 69,000 equivalent albums moved — both numbers that are easy career bests for the pop star, though still well short of the 103,000 posted by Bad Bunny’s Un Verano Sin Ti in its sixth nonconsecutive week at No. 1. On a scale from 1-10, if you’re Lizzo, how excited are you by this debut showing? 

Rania Aniftos: 10! Her first solo music since 2019 breezing to the top 2? Incredible. Any way you slice it, 69,000 units is still really impressive and No. 2 on the Billboard 200 is still a career best for Lizzo. It speaks volumes to her unique ability to stay relevant in pop culture even when she’s not actively releasing music.

Kyle Denis: I would say about a 6. Of course, I’m ecstatic that Lizzo just scored her highest-charting album ever and that “About Damn Time” and her previous singles success resulted in a solid bow for Special. On the other hand, I find 69,000 to be a bit of a disappointment. That’s a lower number than what Nicki Minaj pulled for the streaming release of a decade-old mixtape just last year. I think Lizzo’s relatively lackluster performance on streaming hurt her a little bit. When you combine that with the understanding that she doesn’t have a fanbase as rabid as Harry Styles’s or BTS’s, the number makes sense. Nonetheless, “69,000” doesn’t feel like it represents the power that Lizzo’s name holds or how big “About Damn Time” was and continues to be.

Jason Lipshutz: A 6. With a smash lead single, an arena tour coming soon and relatively light chart competition during her release week, I’m sure Lizzo was hoping that Special could live up to its title commercially and secure that No. 1 spot. Still, a career-high No. 2 showing on the Billboard 200, with a career-best 69,000 equivalent album units, is a pretty great consolation prize – and if Special spins off more hits, maybe the album could compete for No. 1 in the weeks ahead.

Taylor Mims: If I am Lizzo, I am at a 9. I am only straying away from that peak of 10 because it would have been damn nice to hit No. 1 with such a triumphant album. But Bad Bunny is a force to be reckoned with right now and there is no shame coming in second behind him. While 69,000 may not be a record-breaking number for the year (or even the week), it was plenty to get her to the second spot and the biggest debut of the week. The sales are also a career high for her, so she’s consistently moving the needle in the right direction and celebration is in order. 

Andrew Unterberger: I’ll say a 7. No. 2 maybe feels a little underwhelming given what a cultural force Lizzo has become in the three-plus years since Cuz I Love You, but it’s still a first-week number that would’ve been big enough to make it No. 1 a lot of weeks earlier this year, and most of that number coming via sales is certainly a good sign for her upcoming arena tour. Plus, being No. 1 on the Hot 100 at the same time probably takes a decent amount of the sting out of settling for runner-up on the Billboard 200.

2. While her album debuts at No. 2, its lead single ascends to No. 1 in its 14th week on the listing — an impressive, gradual climb from its No. 50 debut. What do you think was the biggest factor behind “About Damn Time” ultimately having the juice to get all the way to the top spot? 

Rania Aniftos: TikTok, of course. Very rarely does an artist – especially one as high profile as Lizzo – take part in a trend relating to their song. Lizzo loved the “About Damn Time” dance trend, and even supported the creator who choreographed the dance, which I think had fans respecting her and feeling connected to her (and the song) that much more.

Kyle Denis: I think there’s a combination of factors at play. At its core, the song’s success is a result of how infectious it is. From the groovy bassline to the empowering lyrics and earworm hook, it’s one of Lizzo’s best pure pop offerings ever. Then, of course, you have the TikTok dance trend, her relentless promotion of the track across social media, and the song just being a genuinely radio-friendly single that can make waves across formats.

The biggest factor, however, is probably that “About Damn Time” isn’t tied to a specific moment. The song didn’t debut at No. 1 as a part of an album bomb like Future’s “Wait For U” or Drake’s “Jimmy Cooks,” nor was it intrinsically connected to a cultural moment with a limited lifespan like “We Don’t Talk About Bruno” and Encanto. “About Damn Time” has been able to enjoy several months of people genuinely connecting to the song itself.

Jason Lipshutz: One could argue that its TikTok glow-up in the first few weeks of release were crucial to “About Damn Time,” helping the single transcend its slow start and become a crucial hit for Lizzo as she returned with a new project after a three-year wait. Yet anyone who has turned on pop radio over the past month and has heard “About Damn Time” an endless amount of (damn) times understands that top 40’s embrace of the track helped deliver it to the top of the Hot 100. Without that type of radio dominance, the song could have been stuck in the outer reaches of the top 20; instead, Lizzo has another No. 1 smash to her name, after radio scooped up “About Damn Time” with the same fervor as “Truth Hurts” in 2019.

Taylor Mims: The ultimate factor is Lizzo. Not just as an artist but as a person. TikTok is certainly a huge factor in the single’s ascent, but nobody was pushing that song as hard as Lizzo herself. She has a knack for social media and she makes it a blast to interact with her on all platforms. Whether she is dancing, joking, singing, talking shit, whatever it may be – she’s engaging people with content constantly and she’s good at it. Obviously, interaction with the new album was the boost she needed to get to the top spot, but she’s been putting in the time all summer. 

Andrew Unterberger: Radio definitely finished the job that TikTok started with “About Damn Time,” but Lizzo also deserves credit for timing all of this smartly — she was able to keep momentum going for the song moving in the right direction, assisting song sales with an iTunes discount in previous weeks, so that the song was close enough to No. 1 that the final push of the Special album release would be enough to vault it to the top spot. After 10 weeks, I’m sure her BFF Harry Styles doesn’t mind ceding her the top spot regardless.

3. Though Lizzo stands alone at the Hot 100’s peak, she debuts just one new song on the Hot 100 this week — “2 Be Loved (Am I Ready)” at No. 84 — with a comparatively low streaming total of 37.17 million, over 14 million of which is accounted for by “Time” alone. Why do you think her streaming presence when it comes to entire albums is lower than you might expect from such a big-name artist with huge pop hits and strong sales numbers?  

Rania Aniftos: I’ve always thought of Lizzo as a “singles” artist, and not so much an “albums” artist, which makes sense as to why her singles do significantly better than her other songs. Because she’s so ever-present in pop culture, you don’t really have to go out of your way to listen to Lizzo’s albums to hear her music on the radio, commercials, TV shows, etc. She dominates the music world in a more passive way, making her inescapable without fans actually having to put in effort to listen to her non-singles. It obviously works, given the No. 1 placement of “About Damn Time” this week.

Kyle Denis: I think our perception of Lizzo’s numbers is sometimes unfairly clouded by her relatively unorthodox breakthrough. In a sense, “About Damn Time” is both her first genuine post-breakthrough hit (“Rumors” may have debuted higher, but it had considerably less impact than “About Damn Time”) and her first hit single from a current album. Her two biggest hits prior to “About Damn Time” ­– “Truth Hurts” and “Good As Hell” – both came from projects that predated the album that she was actually promoting at the time. Lizzo hasn’t really had a chance to establish a streaming presence with new music until now.

Additionally, Special is completely solo. Without any other names to draw in casual listeners or other fan bases, Lizzo was relying on her name and the success of “About Damn Time” to convince people to give her album a spin. During the break between Cuz I Love You and Special, Lizzo released just one song of her own. There were no remixes or featured turns on tracks from other artists to keep her name at the forefront of consumers’ minds and further pad her streaming presence. Finally, although Special is Lizzo’s fourth record, for many consumers this is essentially her second album, and she’s still viewed as a relatively new artist.

Jason Lipshutz: It’s a great question! Lizzo is a household name with multiple hits and a passionate fan base; one could argue that her fan base might be a little older than the average streaming juggernaut, but if that was the case, her songs wouldn’t keep soundtracking TikTok dances and going viral. For whatever reason, Lizzo has functioned more like a “traditional” pop star of the past – heavy emphasis on sales and radio play, less so on streams – and while that may result in only one other song from Special making the Hot 100 in the album’s first week, the upside is that “About Damn Time” is a radio smash and chart-topper.

Taylor Mims: An overwhelming amount of attention is still being focused on “About Damn Time” at the moment. As it should be, as that song is some of Lizzo’s best work. She’s been encouraging her fans to use the song on videos and stream it, but there has been a lot less of a concerted effort to promote the album as a whole. And that strategy makes sense to me: She’s releasing a full-length album amidst a lot of the biggest names in music (Bad Bunny, Harry Styles, Beyoncé) and, album-wise, they are taking all the oxygen out of the space. The focus on “Time” has been a smarter move for her. 

Andrew Unterberger: I feel like Lizzo’s fanbase is maybe a little older on average than we realize — more folks in their 20s and 30s than teens — who may be more likely to just add a song they hear on the radio to a playlist (and maybe even to buy a concert ticket) for an artist they like than to necessarily stream their new album over and over. Which makes sense: Lizzo is in her mid-30s herself, and only really became a pop star in her 30s. She may owe a lot of her success to TikTok, but she’s not really of the TikTok generation.

4. Radio has fully embraced “About Damn Time,” with the song reigning on Billboard‘s radio chart for a third straight week this frame. Do you see any of the other tracks on Special likely following it to top 40 ubiquity? If so, which one(s)? 

Rania Aniftos: I love the disco-tinged, Donna Summer-inspired feel of “Everybody’s Gay.” With a well-crafted music video and promotional strategy similar to Taylor Swift’s “You Need to Calm Down,” it could definitely groove its way to the top 40.

Kyle Denis: “2 Be Loved.” 100%. The hook is undeniable, and it’s got that late 80s/early 90s feel that emphasizes her euphoric vocal performance. Plus, that key change?! I’ll be heartbroken if this isn’t her next big hit. “I Love You Bitch” is probably too explicit for Top 40 in its current state, so I’ll go with “Special” and “If You Love Me” as more likely contenders.

Jason Lipshutz: The obvious answer here is “2 Be Loved (I Am Ready),” which sounds like a surefire hit and, importantly, doesn’t resemble “About Damn Time” in its tone or sonic makeup. I don’t think a facsimile of “About Damn Time” would have played as well at radio as something with a different (but still uptempo) blueprint and more vulnerable (but still positive) look from Lizzo, so “2 Be Loved” does a good job at catering to Lizzo fans while offering a fresh approach.

Taylor Mims: The song I would love to see enter the top 40 would be “Everybody’s Gay.” It’s got elements of Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” and Rick James “Give It To Me Baby” and is an all-around good time. The song I think she’ll have an easier time getting on the radio – with some tweaks on the word choice of course – is “The Sign.” It’s a playful, light track with a chorus you can’t get out of your head. “The Sign” is the perfect song for summer drives with the windows down, so let’s hope she gets it to radio sooner rather than later.

Andrew Unterberger: I think it definitely could be “2 Be Loved” — Max Martin doesn’t really do deep cuts, and this one is a winner that definitely sounds of a piece with a lot of his recent ’80s-indebted post-“Blinding Lights” work. I’m a little worried it might end up being another Matin co-production though: “Grrrls,” the Beastie Boys-lifting (and slightly grating) anthem that debuted a few weeks in advance of Special. It didn’t make a huge impact upon its release, but then again, neither did “About Damn Time” at first — folks might just need to hear it in the right context for it to really click.

5. Now that Lizzo’s lead single has reached pole position, which other song that’s been creeping up and/or hanging around the top of the Hot 100 would you say it’s about damn time for it to actually hit No. 1? 

Rania Aniftos: It’s! About! Damn! Time! For Bey’s “Break My Soul” to hit No. 1. It’s the song of the summer in my opinion and I’m hoping the release of Renaissance this week will give “Break My Soul” its much-deserved boost to the top of the Hot 100.

Kyle Denis: I’d love to see Beyoncé’s “Break My Soul” hit No. 1 during or after Renaissance’s release week. It would be her first solo trip to the top spot since “Single Ladies,” and it would also be a well-deserved No. 1. I’d also like to see Kate Bush’s “Running Up That Hill” or Bad Bunny & Chencho Corleone’s “Me Porto Bonito” hit the summit of the Hot 100. Both songs have been hanging around the top 10 for a while now and have reached a state of ubiquity. I always think it’s cool when older songs find a new audience years later, so I’m rooting for Kate. I also think it’s “About Damn Time” that Bad Bunny have his first No. 1 with his own song (after hitting the top spot in 2018 alongside Cardi B and J Balvin on “I Like It”) — and, as of right now, “Me Porto Bonito” looks like it has the strongest shot out of the Un Verano Sin Ti songs.

Jason Lipshutz: It’s about damn time for a 37-year-old song that’s crept ever closer to the top of the Hot 100 following its Stranger Things revival to finally make it to No. 1! I’m rooting for “Running Up That Hill (A Deal With God)” by the legend Kate Bush, which moves up to a new peak at No. 3 this week, to make the improbable leap.

Taylor Mims: The obvious choice to me is Beyoncé’s “Break My Soul.” I can’t believe it hasn’t hit the summit yet. Is it comical to hear Beyoncé talking about quitting a nine to five? Yes. Does it make it any less of a post-pandemic anthem? Absolutely not. As she says on the track, she’s on a new vibration and I’m hoping “Rennaissance” blows us out of the water the way “Lemonade” did. Just like Lizzo, I have no doubt that the release of Beyonce’s full album this week will get her to the top. I’ll be sorry to see Lizzo relinquish the crown, but the queen is returning. 

Andrew Unterberger: I’d like to say “Running Up That Hill,” but I actually think there’s something cool about a No. 3 peak for that song — let it keep just a little bit of that alternative underdog edge. “Break My Soul” is the obvious other answer, but I’ll also go to bat for Harry Styles’ “Late Night Talking,” which moves back to the top 10 this week (11-9) after debuting at No. 4 back in June, since I think it’s actually a stronger single than “As It Was” and deserves to follow it to the top spot. (However, the latter was just No. 1 for most of the summer, so maybe “Talking” can wait another couple weeks still before mounting its final charge.)

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Ethiopia Habtemariam to Step Down From Motown Records



Ethiopia Habtemariam, currently chairwoman and CEO of Motown Records, will be stepping down from her position in order to pursue new endeavors, she and the company stated in a joint announcement Tuesday.

“It has been the greatest honor to work with some of the most incredible artists, songwriters and partners in the world,” she said in a statement. “I have always had a clear vision for the talent that I’ve had the privilege to work with, which has led Motown to global success and returned the label to the forefront of contemporary culture. I would not have been able to make that vision come to life without the support of my amazing team at Motown, my UMG colleagues around the world, and Sir Lucian.  I am incredibly proud of what we have created during my tenure, and I consider this the perfect finale to my 20 years at UMG spanning publishing and recorded music.”

Lucian Grainge, Chairman and CEO of UMG said, “Under Ethiopia’s leadership, Motown has seen strong growth, continuing its legacy of bringing important new voices to modern culture.  Not only has Ethiopia been instrumental in developing and breaking incredible artists, but also she has strategically identified and amplified key partnerships that have been, and will continue to be, cornerstones of the UMG creative ecosystem.  While I will miss working with Ethiopia, I know she will achieve great things going forward and she leaves with our enduring love and respect.”

Habtemariam began her career as an intern at LaFace Records before joining Universal Music Publishing in 2003, ultimately rising to president of urban music & co-head of creative at the company. Beginning in 2014 she held a dual role as president of Motown as well as her UMPG post, before focusing on the label and being promoted to chairwoman/CEO in 2021.

Over her tenure at Motown, Habtemariam — a regular honoree on Variety’s annual Hitmakers lists — struck several partnerships with creative and entrepreneurial entities, including Atlanta-based Quality Control Music, a pact that has produced hits from City Girls, Migos, Lil Baby, Lil Yachty and others. Other companies and artists under Motown’s roof include Blacksmith Records (Ted When, Vince Staples), and Since the 80s (Asiahn, Njomza), along with artists Erykah Badu, Kem and Tiana Major9, among many others.

A successor to Habtermariam will be announced at a later date. Her internal announcement follows in full:


Some of you may or may not know that the top of 2023 marks my 20th year at Universal Music Group. And, after two amazing decades, I’ve made the incredibly hard decision to leave for my next adventure. I’ll address my future plans soon, but today is all about Motown, UMG and you.

First and foremost, to the Motown team, your commitment to our artists, the legacy of this label, and the community at large is not lost on me. It’s been a privilege and honor to work with each and every one of you and I’m so excited to see how you continue to move Motown forward. Over 60 years ago, Mr. Gordy forged a core for this company – one that respects and celebrates artistry and strongly supports creative entrepreneurship – and this continues to live on thanks to all of you. I couldn’t be prouder of what we’ve built. 

When I think of my time at UMG, it occurs to me that my career really started at this company.  I was a creative manager at UMPG 20 years ago, then by 2010 worked as an A&R consultant and manager while building a creative team at UMPG that signed and developed some amazing songwriters such as Cardo, Childish Gambino, Chris Brown, Ciara, Big Sean, Hit Boy, J Cole, Jhene Aiko, Justin Bieber, Miguel, Stacy Barthe and Quavo among many others. In 2014, I was promoted to the position of President of Urban & Co-Head of Creative at UMPG and appointed to President of Motown Records. 

It was a busy time being in dual roles and laying the foundation for what was to come in an industry with an ever-changing landscape. While continuing to build at UMPG, I was also deeply dedicated to bringing a renewed vision of Black excellence to Motown – rooted in the past but connected to today, global in nature and a platform for the future.  In 2015, we signed a landmark deal for Motown with Quality Control which included a distribution agreement ensuring support in developing the next generation of global superstars. By 2016, as that strategy brought Motown success with new groundbreaking artists, Motown became my sole focus as we continued to grow the company with artists including BJ the Chicago Kid, Brandy, Kem, Diddy, Erykah Badu, Lil Baby, Lil Yachty, Migos, Sebastian Kole, Smino, Tiana MAJOR9, YoungBoy and Vince Staples among others. 

The business has changed so much over those twenty years but throughout its ups and downs, I’ve always felt blessed to have the opportunity to work in so many aspects of the industry. My hunger to learn and continue to evolve led me to the unique experience of working across publishing and recorded music simultaneously. The fact that I was empowered to this unique position reflects my passion for supporting those that are blessed with the gift of music but also speaks to the incredible opportunities I was offered here and for that I want to thank Lucian who recognized my talent as a creative in publishing and gave me the opportunity to lead at a label as well.  

But one thing that has never changed is the love I have for music—and the artists, songwriters and producers that make such incredible art.  That continues to drive everything I do professionally, and it always will. 

This is an exciting time in music and I look forward to exploring new creative and entrepreneurial opportunities. I will share more about my future plans but for now I want to focus on winding down my role as we get to the end of the year.

Thank you for this incredible journey. Know that I will always be here to support you all. 

With love, gratitude and respect,


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Chuu Removed From LOONA Amid Back-and-Forth Reports Between K-Pop Group & Label



Chuu is no longer a member of the K-pop girl group LOONA, and the events surrounding the exit have raised eyebrows in Korea’s media and music industry.

BlockBerryCreative, the K-pop girl group’s label, announced through LOONA’s online “fan cafe” on Friday that Chuu had been expelled and withdrawn from the 12-member outfit. The fan cafe post is only available to subscribers of the Korean site, but local media widely shared the news and statement. In the report, the agency cited an investigation that found Chuu using “violent language” and “misuse of power toward staff” (as shared by translations from Soompi).

BlockBerryCreative and Chuu’s relationship has been a source of concern among fans and prone to media speculation in the past year.

In the spring, rumors surfaced that Chuu took legal action in 2021 to cut parts of her exclusive contract with BlockBerryCreative. By summertime, the stories evolved to Chuu joining a new management label and setting up her own agency. BlockBerryCreative denied any management changes. Still, the 23-year-old did not participate in LOONA’s world tour that visited North America, Europe and Asia from August to October this year or their recent Japanese single “Luminous.” Chuu has stayed busy, with many television appearances, growing a YouTube channel, and releasing solo singles as LOONA’s most visible member.

In the spring, Chuu was rumored to have taken legal action in 2021 to cut parts of her exclusive contract with BlockBerryCreative. By summertime, the stories ranged from Chuu joining a new management label to setting up an agency all on her own. BlockBerryCreative denied that she was transferring management. Still, the 23-year-old did not take part in LOONA’s world tour that visited North America, Europe and Asia from August to October of this year, or their recent Japanese single “Luminous.” Chuu has stayed busy, with many television appearances, growing a YouTube channel and releasing solo singles as LOONA’s most visible member.

On Nov. 28, BlockBerryCreative followed up with another statement saying that the expulsion was not in retaliation. The label said it’s up to the parties involved to share specific evidence. It asked the media to refrain from speculative reporting, after noting articles that doubted BlockBerryCreative’s claims and intentions.

Billboard repeatedly reached out to a BlockBerryCreative representative for comment as the stories unfolded. The rep confirmed Chuu’s removal from LOONA and pointed to previously shared statements.

Several K-pop stars and industry professionals have shown public support for Chuu. Singer Sunmi posted a selfie of her with Chuu after the expulsion news dropped, while Korean music journalist Joy Park shared her memories of Chuu and a signed LOONA album on her Twitter account. Kim Do Heon, another Korean music critic, criticized BlockBerryCreative’s statement through a Twitter post.

For her part, Chuu shared a short statement through an Instagram Story post. On Monday, the star wrote that she was not contacted about nor does she know anything about the recent events. She shared that she would release another statement soon but told fans she hadn’t done anything they would disapprove of.

Another report surfaced on Monday saying that nine of the remaining 11 LOONA members (Heejin, Haseul, Yeojin, Kim Lip, Jinsoul, Choerry, Yves, Go Won and Olivia Hye) were taking legal action to break their contracts with BlockBerryCreative. The agency dismissed the rumor. A BlockBerryCreative representative told Billboard that the report is “groundless.”

LOONA (whose Korean name translates to “Girl of the Month”) began their journey in 2016 with the ambitious plan of introducing each member with her own solo music and splinter units between the members before all 12 members finally came together in August 2018 for the [+ +] EP. LOONA has since earned multiple entries on World Albums and even sent their [12:00] album to the Billboard 200. The group hit No. 1 on World Digital Song Sales with their songs “365” and “Shake It” and also became one of the few K-pop acts to enter the Pop Airplay chart with an English single, “Star.”

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Academy Museum of Motion Pictures Promotes Amy Homma to Chief Audience Officer – Film News in Brief



Long-time Academy Museum of Motion Pictures executive Amy Homma was promoted to Chief Audience Officer Nov. 28, Director and President of the Academy Museum Jacqueline Stewart announced.

“Amy has proven herself to be a skillful, forward-thinking, and inspiring leader since she began at the museum in 2019, and I look forward to seeing her and her teams thrive in this new capacity,” Stewart said. “As a seasoned programmer, educator, and administrator who brings a deep knowledge of audience engagement and museology, Amy is the ideal person to steer our museum’s next chapter of external relations.”

Prior to her new appointment, Homma worked as vice president of Education and Public Engagement at the Academy Museum. Under her leadership, the museum developed K-12 programming and public programs rooted in accessibility and activism.

Homma’s introduction to the Academy Museum was as the inaugural director — a position she acquired following the conclusion of her tenure at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.

In her new role, Homma will continue to facilitate community engagement while having a heavier hand in the museum’s upholding of inclusive values.

“I am eager to work across teams to further develop the museum’s impact and commitment to local, national, and global audiences through a visitor-centered approach,” Homma said.

Cinema Audio Society To Honor Alejandro González Iñárritu with Filmmaker Award

 Alejandro González Iñárritu will receive the Cinema Audio Society’s Filmmaker of the Year honor at the 59th CAS Awards on Saturday, March 4, at the InterContinental Los Angeles Downtown hotel.

“It is an honor to name director Alejandro González Iñárritu as the recipient of the prestigious 2023 CAS Filmmaker Award. His sobering portrayals of the human experience bring empathy and consciousness to perspectives often left untold and unconsidered,” said CAS President Karol Urban. “No doubt drawing on his history in music, his films experiment and utilize sound — uniquely embracing its capacity to emotionally engulf the viewer.”

Upon hearing the news that he was to receive the CAS honor, Mr. Iñárritu said, “Being singled out as a filmmaker by my colleagues in the Cinema Audio Society is a great honor. I have had the pleasure of collaborating with some of the most gifted sound designers in the industry and truly cannot emphasize the importance of the work they do in creating a fully sensorial experience for audiences when watching a film.”

Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival Announces 2022 Winners

The Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival has announced this year’s winners. In its 37th year, the festival took place from Nov. 4-13 and screened 200 films.

Below is the complete winners list of the Jury and President Awards at the 37th annual Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival:

Best American Indie

“Corner Office,” directed by Joachim Black

Honorable Mention:

“American Dreamer,” directed by Paul Dektor

“The Drop,” directed by Sarah Adina Smith

Best Foreign Film

“Ride Above” (Tempete), directed by Christian Duguay

Best Documentary

“The Ghost of Richard Harris,” directed by Adrian Sibley

Honorable Mention:

“The Long Rider,” directed by Sean Cisterna

“Territorio Africano,” directed by Joaquin & Julian Azulay

“Tiger #24,” directed by Warren Pereira

Spirits of Independents Awards

“Abuella’s Family: The Sansgiving Episodes,” directed by Kevin Bosch

“American Dreamer,” directed by Paul Dektor

“Bobcat Moretti,” directed by Rob Margolies

“Camino Al Exito,” directed by Sebastian Rodriguez

“Combat Club,” directed by Mark Moorman

“D.O.A.,” directed by Kurt St. Thomas

“A Matter of Trust,” directed by Annette K. Olesen

“The Mistress,” directed by Greg Pritikin

“Trade,” directed by Corey Stanton

“The Artist and the Astronaut,” directed by Bill Muench

“Freedom on Our Mind,” directed by Chad Light

Special Jury Prize for Production

“D.O.A.,” directed by Kurt St. Thomas

Best Florida Feature

“Bridge to the Other Side,” directed by KT Curran

Best Florida Short

“Connections,” directed by Jennie Jarvis

“Lioness,” directed by Molly E. Smith

Best American Indie Short

“Lift” by Charles Burmeister

Best Foreign Short

“Viva,” directed by Esteben Steven Petersen (Dominican Republic)

Best High School Video

“The Interns,” directed by Sabrina Dubner (USA)

“Backspace,” directed by Ethan Ross (UK)

“White,” directed by Vivian Burmeister (USA)

Best College Short

“Dad We Shall Sing Something,” directed by Aidana Baurjanqizy  (Kazakhstan)

Best College Long Narrative

“Nahrani,” directed by Angelina Auer (Germany)

Best College Animation (TIE)

“There Is Exactly Enough Time,” directed by Oskar Salomonowitz (Austria)

“The Many Benefits of Heartbreak,” directed by Luke Schroeder (USA)

Best College Doc

“Resurgence,” directed by Krushan Naik (USA)

Best Filmed in Broward Short

“Un Pequeno Corte,” directed by Mariana Serrano

Best Filmed in Broward Doc

“The Halls of Power,” co-directed by Janay Joseph, Graciel Quezada & Bianca Vucetice

Lifetime Achievement

Sally Kirkland

Career Achievement

John Gray

Career Achievement

Taryn Manning

Star on the Horizon

Hopper Jack Penn

Star on the Horizon

Zoe Bleu

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