Critics’ Choice Documentary Awards: Jane Goodall Pic Takes Top Honor; ‘Kedi’, ‘Vietnam War’ Among Winners

Jane Documentary

A documentary about the world’s leading expert on chimpanzees and another about the cats of Istanbul took two of the top prizes tonight at the second annual Critics’ Choice Documentary Awards.

Oscilloscope Laboratories

Jane, about chimp maven Jane Goodall, won Best Documentary at the Penn Gillette-hosted ceremony in Brooklyn, and Kedi dragged in Best First Documentary. There was a tie for Best Director between Evgeny Afineevsky for Cries from Syria and Frederick Wiseman for Ex Libris: The New York Public Library.


PBS’ The Vietnam War, the sprawling 17-hour look at America’s original polarizing foreign conflict from Ken Burns & Lynn Novick, was named Best Documentary Series. The pubcaster also claimed Best Ongoing Documentary Series for the venerable Amercian Masters.

The CCDAs are 1-for-1 so far in predicting the eventual Oscar winner for Best Documentary Feature, having given its top honor to Ezra Edelman’s epic OJ: Made in America at last year’s inaugural ceremony.

Here is the complete list of winners at the 2017 Critics’ Choice Documentary Awards:

Best Documentary

Best Director
Evgeny Afineevsky (Cries from Syria)
Frederick Wiseman (Ex Libris: The New York Public Library)

Best First Documentary

Best Political Documentary
Abacus: Small Enough to Jail

Best Sports Documentary

Best Music Documentary
Clive Davis: The Soundtrack of Our Lives

Best Song in a Documentary
“Jump” (Step) – written by Raphael Saadiq, Taura Stinson and Laura Karpman, performed by Cynthia Erivo

Best Documentary Series
The Vietnam War

Best Ongoing Documentary Series
American Masters

Most Innovative Documentary
Dawson City: Frozen Time
Last Men in Aleppo

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