The American Museum of Natural History's Margaret Mead Film Festival, occurring October 17–20, 2019, screens documentaries that increase our understanding of the complexity and diversity of the peoples and cultures that populate our planet. The festival has evolved with the times while maintaining its important history and has grown steadily to reflect the ever-evolving incarnations of storytelling, technology and growing access to communities near and far. The Mead presents the best in documentary, experimental films, animation, hybrid works, and more.

The Mead aims to connect viewers to cultures and communities around the world, creating empathy and understanding through visual media. Hundreds of filmmakers and scholars, thousands of moviegoers, and over 40 international nonfiction films and media converge over four thrilling days of screenings, conversations, and parties.

The Margaret Mead Filmmaker Award recognizes documentary filmmakers who embody the spirit, energy, and innovation demonstrated by anthropologist Margaret Mead in her research, fieldwork, films, and writings.

The award is given to a filmmaker whose feature-length documentary displays artistic excellence and originality of storytelling technique while offering a new perspective on a culture or community remote from the majority of our audiences’ experience. Filmmakers with works making their U.S. premieres at the festival are eligible.