It’s the close of the season for INDEPENDENT LENS on PBS. After each of the 14 television broadcasts, the audience voted on how the films measured up. The votes are in and the audience agrees! Congratulations to HEART OF THE SEA, winner of the first INDEPENDENT LENS Audience Award. A documentary by Lisa Denker and Charlotte Lagarde, HEART OF THE SEA is a portrait of Rell “Kapolioka’ehukai” Sunn, a pioneer of women’s professional surfing who died of breast cancer at the age of 47. At home in Hawaii, Rell achieved the stature of an icon–not only for her physical power and grace, but for her leadership in a community that loved her as much as she loved it.

Log onto the Web site to find out why audiences described HEART OF THE SEA as “beautiful and moving,” “captivating,” “exquisite” and “inspirational.”

* Watch selected video clips. Check out Rell Sunn dancing the hula and riding the waves off the Hawaii shores and see Rell reminisce about her childhood, the ocean, ancestors and her first surfboard.

* Find out how audiences reacted to the film: read passionate comments from viewers, accolades from the press and learn of the many awards the film won.

* Visit the HEART OF THE SEA Web site at www.pbs.org/heartofthesea to learn more about Rell Sunn’s inspirational story, women’s surf history and the making of the film.