LOS ANGELES (February 8, 2024) – Exit the world, enter the wild, wash your soul, dissolve your ego, reveal the illusion, meet yourself. The winners of 12th Annual International Social Impact Media Awards (SIMA 2024) teach us this: Great documentaries aren’t just art, they’re alchemy.

SIMA, the non-profit impact media agency that celebrates, curates and distributes documentaries and creative media projects that advance positive social change, announced their 2024 festival winners this morning. Chosen from 54 finalists spanning 27 countries, the SIMA 2024 winners capture a delicate and raw world held together by individual experiences that will sow the seeds for social and political transformation for years to come.

SIMA 2024 Best Feature Documentary Winner and Oscar Nominee, TO KILL A TIGER, charts the emotional journey of an ordinary man thrown into extraordinary circumstances—a father whose fight for justice for his daughter who was brutally gang raped forces a social reckoning that will reverberate in his village for years. Best Editing and Best Sound Winner, BETWEEN THE RAINS, portraits a childhood caught within a traditional culture that is yet another casualty of climate change. With unprecedented and intimate access to the Turkana people, this moving coming-of-age story reveals the grave threats facing one of the world’s oldest communities.

The story of three families that reveal the reality of life with chronic illness in PAY OR DIE, is the winner of SIMA’s 2024 Systemic Change Award, a $2,500 cash prize Sponsored by The Foundation For Systemic Change. Through their stories, PAY OR DIE explores the crushing financial reality for millions of insulin-dependent Americans living with diabetes, as pharmaceutical companies push the price of this life-saving medication.

From the intimate story of Hossein (M, 30) who grew up in the city of Qom—the most restricted city in Iran— who experienced multiple sexual assaults by men, but due to stereotypes around masculinity, he never talked about it. With the support of his wife, Elahe, he now confronts the trauma in Best Short Documentary, CAN I HUG YOU?; to the fates of three families that are inextricably intertwined in a vicious cycle of violence where Israelis and Palestinians live side by side. The outpouring of love, anger and forgiveness that follows offers a glimpse of morning light in Ethos Jury Prize Winner, MOURNING IN LOD. The SIMA 2024 Winners lead us here: the tapestry of human evolution is not only sewn together through societal revolution, but individual power and transformation.

“Thank you to all the filmmakers for your unwavering dedication and courage to inspire and transform our world. We are proud and honored to champion your work.”

— Daniela Kon Lieberberg, SIMA Founder & CEO

SIMA 2024 winners take viewers on an alchemical journey; bringing audiences face-to-face with some of the world’s most eye-opening, unique and urgent perspectives—with a burgeoning hope that they too, might come to know their own power and its role in the pursuit for a more just and equitable future.

All SIMA 2024 Winners are now eligible for entry into SIMA’s global community screening series and online education platform, SIMA Academy, which reaches over 117,000 students in 100+ countries around the world.


SIMA’s Sponsors are committed to the collaborative effort of honoring the most thought-provoking documentary films of our time. The 12th Annual SIMA Awards are powered by SIMA Studios, Milatido, Foundation of Systemic Change, GSR Foundation, International Documentary Association (IDA), Doc Society, Firelight Media, DC/DOX, Undocumented Filmmakers Collective, Documentary Organization of Canada (DOC), Documentary Australia, and Instituto Multimedia DerHumALC (IMD).


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