MONIFF 2015 Archive

Margaret Nagel

The Monadnock International Film Festival (MONIFF) held April 16-18, 2015 included feature narratives, feature documentaries, a shorts program and industry panels.

The 2015 Jonathan Daniels award was presented to The Good Lie, directed by Margaret Nagle. Nagel spent 10 years working towards getting made. She was hired to write the script in 2004 for Paramount studios and producer Robert F. Newmyer, but the project was constantly being upended with changes in studio brass. The subject matter was considered risky even though Nagle’s script had been publicly lauded with a coveted space on the Blacklist. Then Newmyer unexpectedly died of a heart attack. Nagle promised the Lost Boys of Sudan she would do everything she could to try and get the movie out of Paramount and to a studio who would make it. In 2009-10 Nagle began working with Karen Kehela Sherwood and Ron Howard at Imagine Films and she was able to get the script back from Paramount. Financing fell out but more was found with producers Molly Smith, Thad Luckinbill and Trent Luckinbill. Molly Smith’s parents had recently adopted a Lost Boy in Memphis, Tennessee. She understood what the story was about. Ten years to the month Nagle was originally hired The Good Lie began shooting. The film is now playing commercially around the world. With its Good Lie Fund the movie has been raising money for Unicef for South Sudan and various South Sudanese organizations benefiting the lost boys and girls. Amnesty International, Concern, RefugePoint, Enough Project, Oxfam, Go Project and other NGO’s have been using the film for fundraising and awareness.

In March 2015, the Writers Guild of America awarded Nagle with the Paul Selvin Award for her script of The Good Lie. The Selvin is given “to that member whose script best embodies the spirit of the constitutional and civil rights and liberties which are indispensable to the survival of free writers everywhere and to whose defense Paul Selvin committed his professional life.”