OUTshine 2017 Awards

OUTshine LGBT Film Festival Honors Two Angel Award Recipients

This year, OUTshine Film Festival's annual Angel Award is being given to two outstanding individuals that have contributed heavily to both the OUTshine film festival and the LGBT community overall.

Carol Coombes and Jaie Laplante have spent decades supporting independent film and LGBT rights in the greater Miami area, and to honor their years of dedication, the MiFo LGBT Film Festival is excited to award them our 2017 Angel Award recipients.

Carol Coombes is a veteran in the non-profit arts world and has spent the last 20 years in project and event management. She's currently the Director Cultural Arts for World OutGames Miami where she oversees a multi-disciplinary cultural arts program that taps into the vast network of arts non-profits and artists throughout South Florida. Previously, she worked with both the Miami International Film Festival and was the Managing Director of Philadelphia QFest.

Jaie Laplante is the Executive Director of the Miami Film Festival, where he's worked since 2010 to help bring more Iberoamerican filmmakers to the U.S. Jaie began his career as a film critic and journalist in Canada, where he became one of Western Canada's most outspoken advocates for connecting local talent with their hometown communities in order to foster independent film. He also sits on the Miami-Dade County Film and Entertainment Advisory Board.

“As Co-Executive Directors from 2001 to 2006, the OUTshine Film Festival grew from a small film festival to a nationally acclaimed organization that helped launch LGBT culture and film into the mainstream. Carol and Jaie have been pillars of the local LGBT community for decades, and their support and leadership has helped many organizations - ours included - grow and continue to thrive in the greater Miami area.” - Victor Gimenez, Executive Director of OUTshine LGBT Film Festival.

Carol Coombes and Jaie Laplante will receive their Angel Awards on MiFo's Opening Night, April 21st, 2017 at 8 PM.


The Ally Award is given by the Festival to recognize those persons whose contributions have helped the LGBT community in its struggle for equality, as well as have contributed to LGBT film either in front of the camera or behind the scenes.

This year's Ally Award recipients are Gloria and Emilio Estefan.

EMILIO ESTEFAN is a world-renowned music, television and film producer who has been instrumental in shaping, developing and directing the careers of his superstar wife, Gloria, as well as Shakira, Ricky Martin, Jennifer Lopez, Marc Anthony and Jon Secada among many others. Emilio has achieved incredible success throughout his career, boasting more than 40 years of industry-leading achievements, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom, a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, 19 Grammy Awards, and induction into the Latin Songwriters Hall of Fame just to name a few. Most recently, Emilio Estefan (director, producer, musician), Gloria Estefan (actor, musician, singer), and director Kenny Ortega celebrated the World Premiere of their film A Change of Heart, at the 34th edition of Miami Dade College's Miami Film Festival

With seven Grammy Awards and over 100 million albums sold worldwide, GLORIA ESTEFAN is the most successful Latin crossover performer in the history of pop music. In addition to her 38 #1 hits across the Billboard charts, Gloria recorded the Oscar-nominated song "Music of My Heart," and has received numerous honors and awards over the course of her illustrious career. She has been presented with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame, named BMI Songwriter of the Year, and received an American Music Award for Lifetime Achievement, an MTV Video Music Award, two ACE Awards, and multiple Billboard Awards for her many chart-topping hits.

Most recently, President Obama honored Emilio & Gloria Estefan with the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the Nation’s highest civilian honor, presented to individuals who have made meritorious contributions to the United States, to world peace, and to cultural endeavors.  Gloria, along with husband Emilio, serve as Executive Producers to the Tony-Award nominated Broadway smash musical. . . On Your Feet! based on their lives and music.

Gloria & Emilio Estefan will receive their Ally Awards at the screening of "A Change Of Heart" on April 22nd - 4:45pm at Regal Cinemas South Beach.