The documentary directed by the married couple Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin, won outstanding directing for a documentary/nonfiction program, outstanding cinematography, sound editing, sound mixing, picture editing, music composition and best achievement in interactive media.
The Image Nation Abu Dhabi and National Geographic co-production follows the journey of the professional rock climber, Alex Honnold as he makes his solo ascension to the El Capitan’s 3,200 feet-high vertical rock face in Yosemite National Park without any ropes or safety gear which was a life-long ambition of the free soloist. Thrilling in every aspect, the Abu Dhabi-backed film had grossed a total of USD19.3 million at the box office worldwide and won a BAFTA for Best Documentary, three Critics’ Choice Documentary Awards, three Cinema Eye Honors.
Earlier this year, Free Solo won Best Documentary Feature at the 91st Academy Awards. For the directors Chin and Vasarhelyi, this was not only the first Oscar nomination and but also the first win. Accepting the Oscar Vasarhelyi had said, “Thank you National Geographic for believing in us, and for hiring women and people of color, because we only help make the films better. Thank you to all the amazing people who worked on this film. This film is for everyone who believes in the impossible.”
After the awards ceremony in the pressroom, Chin had said, “Hanging off the wall, I couldn’t see Alex Honnold below, and I just had to trust that he was just being perfect. We also had to carry the weight of the entire production being perfect, because if we made any mistakes, it could have been catastrophic.”
The 2019 Creative Arts Emmy Awards are taking place on Saturday, September 14 and Sunday, September 15 at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles.