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Participant Media Wins Big at Toronto International Film Festival

Green Book Nabs the Festival's Grolsch People's Choice Award; Roma Recognized as Second Runner-Up. Both Films Were Produced and Financed by Participant Media

LOS ANGELES, CA (September 16, 2018) – Following the news out of this year’s Toronto International Film Festival, Participant Media announced today that two of its films — Peter Farrelly’s Green Book and Alfonso Cuarón’s Roma — were awarded with top prizes at the festival, including its highest honor, the Grolsch People’s Choice Award to Green Book, with Roma being recognized as second runner-up. Both films were produced and financed by Participant Media, the leading media company dedicated to entertainment that brings about social awareness and engages audiences to participate in positive social change. Green Book marks the first film from Participant Media to win the People’s Choice Award at TIFF, an award given to the film rated as the year’s most popular with festival audiences.

“We are beyond thrilled that the Toronto audiences have embraced these two very special films,” said David Linde, CEO of Participant Media. “We congratulate all of our partners and the incredible filmmakers, especially Pete and Alfonso, who crafted two films centered on universal themes of love, friendship, family and inclusion that could not be more needed in our world today.”

The TIFF wins mark the latest in a string of successes for Participant Media, including the worldwide box-office hit Wonder, which became the company’s highest-grossing release ever with more than $300 million; Steven Spielberg’s Oscar® nominated The Post; Academy Award® winner for Best Foreign Language Film, A Fantastic Woman; and RBG, the summer box-office sensation, which grossed more than $15 million worldwide. In addition to its recognition at TIFF, Roma also was awarded the Golden Lion for Best Film at this year’s Venice International Film Festival.

“For both Green Book and Roma to be honored in this way is simply incredible, and for Pete, in particular, who has never before been to TIFF, this achievement is all the more poignant,” said Jonathan King, President of Narrative Films and Television for Participant Media. “This award is a welcome confirmation that audiences are not only embracing these films, but enjoying and discussing them as shared communal experiences.”

Green Book will be released by Universal Pictures on Wednesday, November 21, 2018. Roma will launch globally on Netflix as well as theatrically around the world in December.


About Green Book

Academy Award® nominee Viggo Mortensen (Eastern Promises, The Lord of the Rings trilogy) and Academy Award® winner Mahershala Ali (Moonlight, Hidden Figures) star in Participant Media and DreamWorks Pictures’ Green Book, distributed by Universal Pictures.  In his foray into powerfully dramatic work as a feature director, Peter Farrelly helms the film inspired by a true friendship that transcended race, class and the 1962 Mason-Dixon line.

When Tony Lip (Mortensen), a bouncer from an Italian-American neighborhood in the Bronx, is hired to drive Dr. Don Shirley (Ali), a world-class Black pianist, on a concert tour from Manhattan to the Deep South, they must rely on “The Green Book” to guide them to the few establishments that were then safe for African-Americans.  Confronted with racism, danger—as well as unexpected humanity and humor—they are forced to set aside differences to survive and thrive on the journey of a lifetime. 

Jim Burke (The Descendants), Charles B. Wessler (The Heartbreak Kid) produce alongside Farrelly’s fellow writers, Brian Currie and Nick Vallelonga, and Farrelly.  The drama is executive produced by Participant’s Jeff Skoll (The Help) and Jonathan King (Lincoln), along with Octavia Spencer (Fruitvale Station) and Kwame L. Parker (Kill Bill series), as well as Cinetic Media’s John Sloss (Boyhood) and Steven Farneth.  Linda Cardellini (Brokeback Mountain, The Founder) co-stars.


About Roma

The most personal project to date from Academy Award®-winning director and writer Alfonso Cuarón (Children of Men, Y Tu Mamá También), Roma follows Cleo (Yalitza Aparicio), a young domestic worker for a family in Mexico City’s middle-class Roma neighborhood. Delivering an artful love letter to the women who raised him, Cuarón draws on his own childhood to create a vivid and emotional portrait of domestic strife and social hierarchy amidst Mexico’s political turmoil of the 1970s. Roma marks Cuarón’s first project since the groundbreaking Gravity in 2013.

Produced by Esperanto Filmoj and Participant Media, Roma will launch globally on Netflix as well as theatrically around the world in December.


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Participant MediaAbout Participant Media

Founded in 2004 by Jeff Skoll, Participant Media’s (www.participantmedia.com) content combines the power of a good story well told with opportunities for real world impact and awareness around the most pressing global issues of our time. As an industry content leader, Participant annually produces up to six narrative feature films, five documentary films, three episodic television series, and more than 30 hours of digital short form programming, through its digital subsidiary SoulPancake—all aimed at entertainment that inspires social awareness and engaging audiences to participate in positive social change. Participant’s content and social impact mandate speaks directly to the rise of today’s “conscious consumer,” representing over 2 billion consumers who are compelled to make impactful content a priority focus. Through its worldwide network of traditional and digital distribution, aligned with partnerships with key non-profit and NGO organizations, Participant is positioned uniquely within the industry to engage a rapidly growing audience while bringing global awareness and action to today’s most vital issues.

Participant’s more than 100 films, including Spotlight, Contagion, Lincoln, The Help, He Named Me Malala, The Look of Silence, CITIZENFOUR, Food, Inc. and An Inconvenient Truth, have collectively earned 73 Academy Award® nominations and 18 wins, including Best Picture for Green Book and Spotlight and Best Foreign Language Film for Roma and A Fantastic Woman. Participant’s digital entertainment division, SoulPancake (www.soulpancake.com), is an award-winning provider of thought-provoking, joyful, and uplifting digital content including such widely popular series as Kid President and The Science of Happiness and reaches an audience of nearly 9 million fans. Follow Participant Media on Twitter and on Facebook and Instagram. Follow SoulPancake on Twitter and on Facebook and Instagram.


Participant Media became a Certified B Corporation in 2018. B Corps are a new type of company that uses the power of business to solve social and environmental problems. B Corp certification is to business what Fair Trade certification is to coffee or USDA Organic certification is to milk.