Navalny Gives CNN Its First Oscar Win

By A.J. Katz 

CNN celebrated its first-ever Oscar win at the 95th Academy Awards ceremony Sunday night, where Navalny won the Oscar for Documentary Feature Film.

Navalny marked CNN Films’ first win and second Academy Award nomination for Documentary Feature Film, following the 2019 nomination of RBG.

The feature explores the attempted assassination of Russian anti-corruption campaigner and former presidential candidate, Alexey Navalny. It follows the investigation into the assassination plot, and includes reporting from investigative news organization, Bellingcat, and CNN.


CNN Films produced the film alongside HBO. Daniel Roher served as director.

“Navalny, first and foremost, is about the passion, drive, and inspiring heroism of Alexey Navalny, who even as we celebrate this award continues to languish in a penal colony,” CNN’s evp of talent and content development Amy Entelis said in a statement. “An extraordinary group of people were dedicated to keeping Alexey’s story in front of the world, from our indefatigable film team led by visionary director Daniel Roher to our partners at Warner Bros. Pictures and HBO Max, and of course our friends at Bellingcat and CNN’s Clarissa Ward.”

Entelis added, “behind each project in CNN Films’ 10-year history is an incredible group of people who I know are beaming with pride today. This is a monumental win to have the global storytelling of CNN honored with an Academy Award and a testament to the lasting impact of CNN Films.”

Roher delivered acceptance remarks, and was joined on stage by members of the Navalny team and Navalny’s wife Yulia Navalnaya, who delivered a message to her husband.

“My husband is in prison just for telling the truth,” she said. “My husband is in prison just for defending democracy. Alexey, I am dreaming the day when you will be free and our country will be free. Stay strong, my love. Thank you.”