Gotham Awards To Honor Gina Prince-Bythewood, Audible’s Don Katz With Tributes

The Gotham Film & Media Institute has set The Woman King filmmaker Gina Prince-Bythewood and Audible, Inc.’s Founder and Executive Chairman Don Katz as the latest pair of honorees to be feted at the 32nd annual Gotham Awards, taking place live and in person at NYC’s Cipriani Wall Street on November 28.

Prince-Bythewood will receive the Filmmaker Tribute, with Katz set for the Innovator Tribute.

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Prince-Bythewood is an award-winning writer, director and producer who was also recently named by American Cinema Editors as this year’s recipient of their Golden Eddie Filmmaker of the Year Award. She most recently directed the period war film The Woman King, starring Viola Davis and Thuso Mbedu, for Sony’s TriStar, Which premiered to critical acclaim at the Toronto Film Festival and was released in September.

The multi-hyphenate previously helmed features including Love & Basketball, The Secret Life of Bees, Beyond the Lights and The Old Guard. Among her upcoming projects is the Disney+ Original limited series Genius: MLK/X, starring Kelvin Harrison Jr. as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Aaron Pierre as Malcolm X, which she’s exec producing alongside her husband Reggie Rock Bythewood for Undisputed Cinema.

“Gina Prince-Bythewood is a visionary filmmaker and a champion of Black narratives, particularly stories that center around Black women,” said The Gotham Film & Media Institute’s Executive Director, Jeffrey Sharp. “She has brilliantly tackled painful moments in our nation’s history, thorny philosophical debates, and love stories. From the beloved and burnished classic ‘Love & Basketball’ to the pinnacle success of this year’s ‘The Woman King,’ Gina is a true inspiration and it is a distinct honor to name her the recipient of this year’s Filmmaker Tribute.”

Since its 1995 launch, Katz’s company Audible has established itself as a leading creator and provider of premium audio storytelling. It commercialized the first portable digital audio player in 1997 — four years before the introduction of the iPod — was publicly traded on NASDAQ until its acquisition by Amazon in 2008, and is now an Amazon subsidiary.

Audible has, in recent years, set production and development deals with such notable entities as Barack and Michelle Obama’s media company, Higher Ground; George Clooney and Grant Heslov’s Smokehouse; Kerry Washington’s Simpson Street; Lena Waithe and Rishi Rajani’s Hillman Grad Productions; Queen Latifah’s Flavor Unit; Laura Dern’s Jaywalker Pictures; Kenya Barris’s Khalabo Ink Society; Topic Studios; Treefort Media; Kevin Hart’s HartBeat Productions; Charlamagne tha God’s CTHAGOD World Productions; and LeBron James and Maverick Carter’s The SpringHill Company.

Projects produced via these deals join a series of Audible Originals including Neil Gaiman’s #1 New York Times bestselling audio fiction The Sandman and The Sandman: Act II, performed by James McAvoy; The Miranda Obsession, performed and produced by Rachel Brosnahan; Living Legend, a new Words + Music original by John Legend; The Big Lie, from Fresh Produce and featuring Jon Hamm; Climate of Change with Cate Blanchett; Summer of ’85 from SBH; Seat at the Table from Marcus Samuelsson; The Method from James Patterson and featuring Zachary Quinto; Letters from Camp from Jamie Lee Curtis; Skybound’s Impact Winter; and Broadway Video’s Hot White Heist, directed by Alan Cumming and starring an all-queer cast led by Bowen Yang.

Katz was recently celebrated at PEN America’s Literary Gala as its Business Visionary Honoree. He worked as a journalist and author for two decades prior to founding Audible, with his work winning a National Magazine Award, an Overseas Press Club Award, and the Chicago Tribune Heartland Prize for Nonfiction, while scoring a National Book Critics Circle Award nomination and other recognition.

“As an author, a visionary entrepreneur, and a storytelling innovator, Don has created a new paradigm for IP development, production and distribution, while simultaneously disrupting the publishing, audio, film and TV industries. His commitment to urban renewal, diversity, equity, and inclusion anticipated the contemporary social justice movement in Corporate America by several decades and stands as a model for future founders and CEO’s,” remarked The Gotham’s Sharp. “Under Don’s leadership, Audible has become an important collaborator to The Gotham in supporting emerging voices in audio. We are incredibly grateful to Don for his leadership and powerful support.”

The Gotham Awards are recognized as one of the leading honors for independent film and television, providing early acknowledgement to groundbreaking independent films and television series as they move through awards season. Other honorees set for this year’s ceremony include Michelle Williams and Adam Sandler, who will receive Performer Tributes. Focus Features’ Chairman Peter Kujawski and Vice Chairman Jason Cassidy will be met with an Industry Tribute, with the Venice Film Festival to be presented with the Gotham Impact Salute.

For the full list of 2022 Gotham Award nominees, click here.

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