The 8th annual Social Impact Media Awards (SIMA 2020) are open and calling all filmmakers, production companies, funders, and creative activists to submit

Online PR News – 26-September-2019 – LOS ANGELES (September 25, 2019) – Impact filmmakers and creatives rejoice. For its 8th year, the Social Impact Media Awards (SIMA) is now open for entries.

SIMA is the most renowned global awards competition and curator in the social impact film space. Their Social Impact Media Awards have supported content creators on the front lines of social change since 2012, steering a paradigm shift into honoring and recognizing the kind of social impact storytelling that is overlooked and underserved—that challenges the status quo and redefines the creative boundaries of the field through unparalleled transparency and integrity. SIMA's year-round distribution programs then bring awarded films to audiences, communities and classrooms around the globe, democratizing access to social issue filmmaking with an emphasis on what happens after the credits roll, i.e. impact through community engagement, coalition building and education.

Through the years, SIMA's work at the intersection of film and activism has brought an international spotlight to some of the world's most pressing social issues through documentary filmmaking with previous winners including: Alexandra Bombach's ON HER SHOULDERS, following Iraqi Yazidi activist Nadia Murad who escaped the hands of ISIS to become a relentless beacon of hope for her people; Leon Lee's LETTERS FROM MASANJIA taking us deep into the horrific realities of China's labour camps through the eyes of Sun Yi, who's determined to expose these unthinkable human rights violations; Nova Ami and Velcrow Ripper's METAMORPHOSIS, uncovering how humanity is being transformed in new ways by the environmental crises we have created.

In addition to its traditional Award categories: Feature and Short Documentaries, Impact Videos, VR + 360, this year SIMA 2020 will be recognizing Production Companies whose body of work demonstrates outstanding achievements in creating impact through diverse formats of visual storytelling, as well as Funders, (both Corporate Entities and Grant-Makers) whose support of social impact media is uniquely empowering the work of content creators.

"At SIMA we have a saying: 'social impact—it takes a village'. We've always pushed for an understanding of the ecosystem and infrastructure required to create sustainable change through film. This year we are expanding our award categories to honor the collective impact of production companies and funders alike—recognizing them for being the bedrock, the heart and catalysts of impact filmmaking to spark change." - Daniela Kon Lieberberg, SIMA Founder + Executive Director

From September 9th to October 25th, 2019, SIMA is accepting submissions for feature-length and short-format documentaries, virtual reality (VR) films, and impact videos that move, enlighten, and transform our world; as well as production companies and media funders who are trailblazing entities supporting the power of media to build public and political will for social action.

Each year, submissions from all over the world are invited to compete for honors, cash prizes, industry accolades, media features, distribution opportunities, and entry into SIMA's signature film programs. Finalists will be announced on January 10, 2020 and Winners announced on February 7, 2020.

SIMA is looking for original, wise, brave, eye-opening and creative productions that increase the awareness of viewers to local and global issues, to the resilience of humans facing deprivation, to the politics and movements of human rights, environmental and social justice, and to efforts and agents of change worldwide. We seek productions that raise important questions about the state of our contemporary world and inspire people to reflect on the meaning and potential of social activism and social transformation.


Feature Documentaries, Short Documentaries, Virtual Reality (VR)/ 360 Films, Impact Videos: Innovations and Creative Advocacy, Production Companies, and Funders


Early Bird (September 9th - September 26th)

Regular (September 27th - October 10th)

Late (October 11th - October 25th)


Submit your films to no later than October 25, 2019.


SIMA's Sponsors are committed to the collaborative effort of honoring the most thought-provoking documentary films of our time. Sponsors include: Seed & Spark, Black Magic Design, NoNot, HEK, WeTransfer and Human Sustainability.

Alyssa Palmer