Michigan Movie Critics Guild Announces Members for Inaugural Year

As the summer movie season is coming to an end and the awards season approaches, the newly assembled Michigan Movie Critics Guild (MMCG) is ready to celebrate cinematic excellence. 

“As the film industry recovers from the pandemic, it’s doing so at a time when moviegoers’ tastes are changing. The same big budget and franchise films that used to dominate no longer are guaranteed to attract audiences, and moviegoers seem to be more likely to head to films that they’ve heard positive things about,” said board member Chris Williams, who writes for CinemaNerdz and the Chrisicisms newsletter. “Now more than ever, it’s important to have skilled critics ready to discuss movies and highlight quality work.” 

The first year of the MMCG recently welcomed 11 critics, who cover films for a variety of outlets across the state. From websites to newspapers and podcasts to YouTube, they capture the diversity of the field and bring a range of expertise, outlooks, and tastes. 

“When you take into account that 70% of critics are white and men outnumber women 2 to 1,  choosing to present a diverse critic base in Michigan is a cornerstone of MMCG,” said board member MontiLee Stormer, a critic at MovieReelist. “We can acknowledge not every film is for every movie goer, and we can certainly promise we won’t agree on everything, but offering varying opinions across genres, film styles, and mediums ensures balanced representation. I’m very excited to be a part of that.” 

This year’s lineup includes: 

“I’m beyond thrilled with the formation of the Michigan Movie Critics Guild, Michigan’s premiere critic organization, that will bring a wide range of professional critics from across the mitten state together to discuss and champion cinema,” said Nate Adams, board member and critic at The Only Critic. “Having a local critics group is a crucial component within the industry and it lets the public know about movies they may otherwise had not seen thanks to the broad range of diverse voices. It also opens up an important dialogue about the preservation of film.”

The MMCG is a collective of film critics who are committed to enhancing and furthering the conversation about cinema and further establishing the state’s reputation as a film-loving community. The season will culminate this fall with the announcement of the guild’s selections for the best of the year in movies in a variety of categories, including a Michigan-specific award. The group also hopes to host panels, screenings and other events to commemorate awards season and generate enthusiasm for film across the state. 

This year’s award categories will include: 

  • Best Picture
  • Best Director 
  • Best Actress 
  • Best Actor 
  • Best Supporting Actress 
  • Best Supporting Actor 
  • Best Animated Film 
  • Best Documentary 
  • Best Ensemble 
  • Best Screenplay (Adapted or Original) 
  • Breakthrough Award 
  • Best Stunt
  • The MMCG Award for Film Excellence (presented to a filmmaker, writer, actor, crew member etc. who has Michigan ties or to a film made in Michigan) 

This year’s voting deadlines, which are subject to change, are: 

  • Deadline for screening to be eligible: Nov. 29 
  • Voting:
    • Ballots due by 7 p.m. Nov. 30 
    • Nominations announced Dec. 1 
    • Ballots for winners due by 5 p.m. Dec. 3

Winners will be announced on the guild’s social media channels and with a press release at noon on Dec. 4

“We’re excited to bring a professional film critics group to the state of Michigan,” said board member Becky Fixel, who writes for Week99er. “Not only does the MMCG fill a much-felt void within the film industry locally, but there is a great potential for the professional advancement of film critics within our state. Michigan has brought the film industry a lot of fan-favorite films and technology used within the film industry, and while we may not be one of the top film-producing states, we definitely have film aficionados from all over and different backgrounds. We’re excited to expand the Michigan connection to the film industry as well as the professional options for film critics in our state.”

Information about the MMCG and its members is available at its website. For further information or to request member contact information please email michiganmoviecritics@gmail.com

About the author

Becky is an entertainment writer in Metro-Detroit. She is currently an active member of the MMCG and within the local community. You can reach her at becky@week99er.com