Breaking the Barriers of Identity and Stereotypes: Fangirl Mail wins the Audience Awards BESE Pilot Competiton

December 20, 2018

It’s cold outside, snow is falling, and we don’t want to leave the warmth of our beds. In hopes of finding a new binge-worthy series, we turned to the Audience Awards community who successfully brought us an episode that evoked the identity of everyone who had ever lived online.

The winner was selected by the global audience and the BESE Pilot panel including Zoe Saldana, an actress who works to build confidence in children worldwide, and Daniel Batista, co-founder of BESE, who is working to shine a light on untold stories.

The winner of the BESE Pilot Competition was Fangirl Mail by Ambar Navarro. The film follows the story of Hazel Cills who lives online and recalls all the internet trends she has lived through.

Watch her short pilot here.

L.A. based filmmaker Ambar says that “winning the BESE Pilot Competition on Audience Awards means that I will be able to finish a self-funded passion project I took on many years ago to highlight the importance of women online and to freely express their experiences and speak in their own voices about living online.” Navarro wins a 6-episode limited web series fully funded and distributed by BESE, putting her on the map to achieving her dreams of telling great stories through stop-motion.

Audience Awards appreciates the amount of identity a filmmaker puts into their creative work. Ambar states, “having this support acknowledges the small, but important role female animators play in the stop-motion world. To give a Mexican female director her own series is super rare and I am beyond honored to be able to physically create the worlds I want to live in!”

BESE Founder Zoe Saldana states, “Latinos are a growing community in America, but Latino stories have remained historically marginalized,” Saldana said. “I’m so excited to be leading BESE, a truly uplifting brand that fills a niche for young audiences craving positive portrayals of the modern Latino experience in America. BESE is all about broadening the existing cultural narrative, and this competition was an opportunity for aspiring filmmakers, and really anyone with a compelling idea, to bring a great story to life.  We’re excited to develop Ambar’s series into a multi-episode web series!”


ABOUT AUDIENCE AWARDS: Audience Awards provides filmmakers with the opportunity to change the world through stories, win prizes and build an audience. Films are judged by industry professionals and the global audience. We are committed to providing a stage for diverse, emerging talent and their work. Our platform is dedicated to celebrating the power of storytelling and building an audience. Created by filmmakers, for filmmakers, Audience Awards offers an invaluable platform for exposure. Our filmmakers don’t just gain exposure – like press and social media engagement – but also opportunities to accelerate their careers. Learn More: For more filmmaking opportunities visit For more industry film news relevant to you, visit


Audience Awards offers brands the ability to crowdsource high-quality authentic video content from filmmakers from around the world. Learn more about how to run a video contest.


Article written by Danika Firth


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