What’s Up!? Star Wars and Short Film

Star Wars The Last JediStar Wars The Last Jedi opens this week. Spoiler Alert…maybe, it is afterall the movies…but Luke Skywalker bids checks out in a fitting tribute to the power of ‘the force’. But how can we forget that this time last year the real time drama and ultimate death of Carrie Fisher was unfolding. The sequence in the movie, almost dream like, where she was blown out of the Resistance vessel and used the force to revive and get herself to the help she needed, was prescient of her real life experience but without the benefit of ‘the force’ Carrie Fisher…Princess Leia left us. Her presence in the film looming large and fighting to the very end to save the Resistance seems metaphorically a tribute, as a reflection of her actual life. Thank you Carrie Fisher for your sense of originality and devil may care attitude toward life.

Star WArs The Last Jedi

Mark Bellusci

Mark Bellusci is an award winning filmmaker hosted on the itsashort.com platform. His short films are dramatic, dark and comedic at the same time. There’s always a twist in the story you don’t expect to see or experience. To quote Mark: From advertising to PR, video to new media, I’ve developed a wide range of campaigns and video productions for such companies as American Express, Dannon, IBM, Pfizer, IKEA and others. Along the way, I’ve won a One Club Gold Pencil, several ADDY’s, a Marketing Icon and other awards, he’s an amazing story teller.

He has several of his shorts on the itsashort.com platform, show him some love and support by watching, sharing and commenting on his work. His work has won a ton of awards and he is frequently featured in film festivals. Our festival partner, The Miami Shorts Film Festival, is a huge fan of his work and has recognized Mark Bellusci as one of their award winning artists.

Miami Shorts Film Festival.

The Miami short Film Festival is dedicated to promoting the short film genre, showcasing films from 1-20 minutes long. The Festival is international in scope, bringing exposure to the world’s best independent up-and-coming filmmakers.

MIAMIsFF’s goal year after year is focused on motivating directors, screenwriters, actors, and producers to make films and share them with fellow film makers and industry professionals. The ultimate goal is to bring exposure to independent up-and-coming filmmakers.

MIAMIsFF is an avid supporter of local and international film makers representing cinematic productions that embody the true spirit of the art.  From original scripts to new cinematography and film techniques, each and every piece is the result of true emotion and expression.

The Festival presents a unique opportunity for our local community, tourists, and the next generation of talented filmmakers from around the world to experience the true spirit of the creative film-making process.

The MIAMI short FILM FESTIVAL has become a powerful cultural voice to South Florida and has created a positive influence on the arts through film.

Today’s short films lead to tomorrow’s world-renowned filmmakers.

Tinsel and Tine

Check out the latest blog post from Tinsel and Tine which offers a wonderful tribute to 2017 and a healthy and happy set of wishes for 2018! Special Shout out!!

itsashort.com

Here at itsashort.com we look forward to continuing to profile our amazing artists, our festival partners and our favorite short film and some features! We share the commitment of our festival partners to profile amazing and award winning short film and the artists who create these great stories!!

What’s Up?! itsashort and Sundance

sundance blog post 12-7-17The long awaited list of Shorts for the Sundance Film Festival is released!There are 66 shorts this year and they fall into four distinct categories: US Narrative, International Narrative, Animation and Documentary. The US shorts seem to all deal with some variation of a heartbreaking moment which is the tension point for the drama of the short…there are others that truly capture real life moments or true stories, but again kind of sad. itsashort.com will be at Sundance tracking these artists to learn more about their work, their inspiration and their experiences.

SHORT STORY ABOUT LUCK

This weeks featured Short Film on the itsashort.com platform is Short Story About Luck. We love this short film, it was part of the First Glance Online Short Film Contest this fall. It totally changes the way you think about Luck!

Short Story About Luck TRAILER from Nathaniel Czarnecki on Vimeo. Nathaniel Czarnecki is an amazing artist from Krakow Poland. Short film and commercial work for major brands have been his primary focus.

Panamanian International Film Festival just finished its festival run December 4, 2017 in Los Angeles.  Check out the festival in its third year…the industry panels look spot on! We are huge fans of Angela McCrae and the other amazing panelists!

As we gear up for the 2018 festival season, we have to be thankful for a great 2017. We met many new artists and went to many festivals this year. We continue to partner with new festivals every week and look forward to introducing everyone to new artists. There were so many new shorts and features and a trend we love which is that short film are more often premiering in large theaters ahead of a major feature film.

Tinsel and Tine published a post about an amazing environmental film festival in Philadelphia. Our favorite was a film titled A Plastic Ocean, available on Vimeo. Seems like the strategy for using the ocean as a site for refuse has serious consequences! Ocean trash has become a major issue…thanks to the documentary filmmakers for this thoughtful piece.

A Plastic Ocean

A Plastic Ocean from Brainstorm Media on Vimeo.

At itsashort.com the work of the artists is what we celebrate and finding ways to share their work with our audiences….well that’s what we do!

What’s Up?! Got The Love, the Short Film

Got the love image FDavid Weathersby is a renowned videographer and cinematographer, based in Chicago. The underground music scene, the ‘raw art’ work of artists performing in Chicago from around the world has always been the center piece of his work. Soul and the question, What is Soul as a music genre, is the subject of his latest short film/documentary, Got The Love.

What is Soul? Soul music, depending on who you ask means different ideas, includes different artists, different music expression depending on the decade, again, depends on who you ask. But everyone has an answer and the root of Soul music is always in how it feels to the artists and to the listener but mainly to the artists.

Alternative Soul music…hmmm…one example suggested is Afro punk…but other artists question whether there is a need to identify the musical expression at all. What’s the point, its music and it’s soul music…why does there need to be another label, is the discussion shared by many artists.

Indie music…its indie but its mainstream because its soul music…yet the success of this genre is tough to recognize. In fact, for many of these artists, success is elusive, often tied to resources or lack thereof. Why is that? The documentary asks and answers the question by raising the question. Many say the answer is that we need to show the love for the music, talk about it, be about it, know about it. Got the Love is a documentary that begins that dialogue by raising questions, showcasing the work of artists and introducing people to music and artists they have yet to know. It’s won wide praise and awards from film festivals, show your love and support by watching and sharing this amazing documentary! itsashort.com is featuring the documentary in our lounge, here. Check it out!

Festival Updates!

Denver Film Festival, CIMMfest, Chicago Comedy Film Festival and a ton of other festivals are literally getting underway this week!

Denver had its largest opening in its 40 year history, maybe because they included 96 amazing shorts! Denvers’ support of short film has historically been amazing and this year is no exception. Ranging from animation to documentaries to fantasy in everyway imaginable, these artists take ordinary stories and find the unique magic that connects all of us.

CIMMfest:

CIMMfest is the Chicago International Movie and Music Festival. Short film is embedded in the program throughout and has mainly a music focus…we love it! itsashort will catch up with Director Penelope Spheeris to talk more about this incredible documentary, The Decline of Western Civilization, the premiere documentary of the festival. Its not a short but a very different look at the music scene…Ozzie and Sharon Osbourne, defined the era…right?

Chicago Comedy Film Festival features 4 shorts programs with distinct themes, Treasured Friends and Beloved Darlings has good feels! We can’t wait. The festival opening night was a Shorts program! Brilliant! Here at itsashort.com. we are huge fans of this festival…because their opening night is a night of short film!

itsashort.com: this week’s update includes a shout out to FirstGlance film festival for an incredible online short film contest, hosted by itsashort.com. The shorts were amazing and winners will be announced shortly.

Tinsel and Tine, our amazing blog partner, writes about the Philadelphia Asian Film Festival that also opened this week! We love the theme of the industry conference held in partnership with the Asian American Studies Program at the University of Pennsylvania, art as activism!

What’s Up!? Short Film!

Night ShiftMarshall Tyler’s short film, Night Shift, a Sundance official entry, won Best of Fest for the 53rd Chicago International Film Festival! Produced by JuVee Productions, the production company owned by Viola Davis and her husband Julius Tennon. Random, or maybe not, Marshall Tyler met Viola and Julius at a 4th of July party. They were fans of another script and loved the idea that became Night Shift. Everyone has an idea about the night shift, would d bathroom attendants would be on that list?

There’s a phenomena, a universe of….bathroom attendants in LA…where else…not sure. Marshall Tyler was fascinated by their experiences and stories. He actually met and interviewed several bathroom attendants and their stories all influenced the amazing short film: Night Shift. The trailer is below, and, this is a tough story.

Night Shift Trailer

Meet Marshall Tyler..

Austin Film Festival

The Austin Film Festival announced their short film winners; today is the closing day of the festival. Cleaner Daze won the jury award for best Scripted Digital Series.  It is a series shot inside a rehab center for juveniles. Tess Sweet is the creator/writer/director and a recovering heroin addict. So there is a gritty, rawness that she works very hard to embed in every aspect of the series. Many of the ‘actors’ are real people in recovery who tell their stories while telling their stories.

Addiction is rough stuff, to really get in touch with the experience, the series has embedded in each episode  a VR option to create a sense of ‘being there’ in the episode…

Check out Tess Sweets talk…

Cleaner Daze

itsashort.com

This is the last week of the FirstGlance Short Film online contest hosted by itsashort.com. The shorts are amazing. Click here to watch and vote.

Special shout out to our sister blog Tinsel and Tine and their amazing reviews from the Philadelphia Film Festival and the FirstGlance Film Festival.

 

What’s Up!? Short Film: Must Kill Karl

Must Kill Karl Must Kill Karl makes its Canadian premiere at the Edmonton Film Festival this Friday, October 6, 2017. The festival opened September 28, but clearly one of the best of the short film is yet to be seen. Three key figures who serve as writer, director and actor, happen to be best friends and two of the three are coupled!

The short film is about the one friend we all love to hate and in this movie, ultimately decide must be killed? The three people involved in the creation are: Karen Moore, Mike Lobel and Joe Kicak. Karen and Joe are the writer producer team and Mike, their real life high school ‘bud’ is the principal actor. Below is the ‘press note’ about Karen, Mike and Joe.

‘Karen Moore is a Toronto-based writer and producer of narrative TV and films. Karen’s currently a writer/co-producer on the hit comedy series Workin’ Moms (CBC). Her TV writing/story editing credits include What Would Sal Do? (Crave) and Rookie Blue (ABC/Shaw). Karen is in development with CBC Kids on a Digital Original series. Karen wrote/produced the 2012 BravoFACT drama, Your Place or Mine, and the award-winning drama, Frozen Marbles.

Mike Lobel as Karl is best known for his roles as Jay Hogart on CTV’s “Degrassi: The Next Generation” and DJ on the Family Channel sitcom “Really Me”.  A trained musician, Mike has been a member of the indie-pop band Future Peers. Co-starring an ensemble cast, Must Kill Karl takes an unexpected turn that will take you by surprise.

Award-winning filmmaker Joe Kicak is a writer/director/producer keeping busy with his other award wining short ‘Frigid’ on the festival circuit. Joe is currently in development with CBC Kids with a Digital Original series. His previous directing credits include the award-winning short film Distilled Love, which received the National Screen Institute’s Drama Prize. His feature film, Two Days Till Tomorrow, screened at festivals across North America and won a limited Canadian theatrical release with AMC theatres.’

Must Kill Karl Trailer

Must Kill Karl makes its US debut this year at the Austin Film Festival and Karen, Mike and Joe will be there!

itsashort.com

In the itsashort universe, we are preparing to launch the FirstGlance online short film contest October 9, 2017. The shorts are amazing. Participating in the contest is beyond easy! Just click here starting Monday October 9, at noon central.

Puerto Rico, the CariBbean and Mexico City

Many of our fans, subscribers and friends of itsashort.com have been affected by either the awful events in Las Vegas, the devastating effects of the hurricane throughout the Caribbean, including Puerto Rico where enormous numbers of people have been affected and Mexico City which is still reeling from the devastating affects of the earthquake. The losses will be incalculable in human and even material costs but the opportunity to somehow help is being embraced in astonishing ways throughout the world. Our instincts to care for others is exampled everywhere. We know that everyone who can help is helping…and so are we here at itsashort.com. We will post something every week that shares the work of everyday people helping others.

 

What’s Up? Black Harvest Film Festival

bhff-logo-16x9Black Harvest Film Festival  completed its 23rd festival and announced the Best Short Film winner, The Suit. The features, shorts, industry moments and the most recent addition, the expo were great. There is always a nod to the local artists, many of whom premiered their work. Special note goes to David Weathersby and Shahari Moore.  The shorts programs were amazing; this year there were seven short film program tracks:  Women of Color, Made in Chicago 1, Black history – Lost and Found, International, Family Matters, A Black Harvest Feast, Love African American Style and Made in Chicago 2.  But meeting filmmakers and fans, networking and learning the background stories and challenges of the artists were real highlights of the festival. amazing to hear.  Floyd Norman, a Disney legend who offered a master class in animation was a reminder of the number of true filmmaker pioneers.

The brilliance of opening the festival with a series of award winning short films and the close with the iconic Love Jones, as a celebration of its 20th year cannot be overstated…next year will be amazing. Its the month of August, every year!

Black Harvest Film Festival Audience Favorite

The Suit

The Suit is a short film by Jarryd Coetsee from South Africa. It’s a Fifties-set drama based on a short story by once banned South African writer Can Themba. The story is about a husband who devises a cruel and unusual punishment for his unfaithful wife. It has been admitted to two Oscar Qualifying Festivals and has won Best Short Film Prize at the prestigious South African Film and Television Awards.

The story is that a husband catches his wife with another man in their home, yeah…in the bedroom. Her punishment, this is set in the fifties, was that she was required to carry The Suit of her lover everywhere she went! Gotta love South African story telling….the ending is tragic, beyond sad but mirrors the harsh conditions of South Africa at the time…somehow there is a kind of odd parallell.

The short film is beautifully ‘shot’ and a definite must see.

 

As we prepare for the FirstGlance online short film contest which starts October 9, 2017 on the itsashort.com platform. Checkout the trailer for the Spring winning short film Chocolate:

 

This is the ‘teaser’ for the short film Chocolate by Thiago DaDalt a Brazilian filmmaker about the unbelievable experience of someone who is dealing with Alzheimers, or some form of brain deterioration. It has garnered more than 9 Short Film Festival awards. It’s focus is the ‘real life’ story of woman, Nancy Paulikas, who has been missing for over a year. Partnering with the Alzheimers Association, the search continues, the commitment to raising awareness of this debilitating disease is unrelenting.

Finally, please checkout our online platform: itsashort.com. In addition to amazing short film, we are launching the FirstGlance online short film contest October 9, 2017. Many have participated, this contest will be ‘lit’!

What’s UP! The Women’s Film Festival

The Women's Film FestivalRecently we caught up with Phuong Nyugen and Layne Marie Williams, co-founders of The Women’s Film Festival in Philadelphia. We talked with them about their inspiration and ideas  for creating what has become a very successful festival for women, going into its 5th year!

My question was to describe the birthing process for this festival. Their response: ‘The Birthing process: we had no funding, no money we used our charm to get discounts for venues, getting donations from companies and using our passion to help women succeed. Once we got the ball rolling we realized there was huge interest. We opened submissions to the rest of the world. The response was amazing, we realized how much women needed us. Our first film festival we started with 50 submissions, second year tripled, next year 400 submissions. We are open now for submissions  for next year. We’ve been open a few months, we see 100 submissions, closing date is November 5th. It seems to double and triple, over time  women get into the film festival and the fact that someone other than family and friends see their films is just an amazing experience. So, an untapped community of artists looking for expression! Check out their festival next year, March 2018!

The Expanding Roles of Women!

Flip to Maggie Gyllenhaal in addition to starring in two different series is also a producer on both those series.  The first, Deuce is about an oddly considered role for women.

The role of women is finally expanding to include so much more than acting, but also becoming part of the creative process including developing story lines and characters. The role of women is beginning to be defined by earnings, a classic yard stick.  The four women who lead the earnings ‘leader list': Emma Stone, Jennifer Aniston, Jennifer Lawrence and newcomer to the list, Emma Watson…all earned more than $20M in a 12 month period…that is a huge amount of of just cash but compared to the male counterparts? We wonder.

According to Emma Stone, her male actors actually took a pay cut to equalize pay…so doesn’t seem as if things are completely worked out in the industry, but we are making progress!

Closer to Home:

What’s happening on the itsashort.com platform? Lots of cool stuff, we are partnering with film festivals for the fall including our fan favorite First Glance Film Festival, watch for their contest on our platform. Here’s the trailer for last year’s Philadelphia winner, the short and interview are available on our platform.

We are also looking forward to another great festival in Miami, the Miami International Shorts Film Festival, the always amazing Chicago International Film Festival and The Austin Film Festival.

Get ready for Generation Z! (anyone born after 1995 ish)

Girl Cult, a one day event for Gen Z women from the amazing creative team, Galore Magazine, the hot design house that has taken campaigns to a completely new and almost unimagined level, is launching it’s inaugural event. Check out their ‘About’ page here. They combine amazing artistic expression with events, amazing influencers and a ridiculous set of social media campaigns…but let’s be clear, they totally do it.

itsashort.com is an online platform for award winning/award nominated short film, video and web series. Check outf itsashort.com for amazing short film!

 

 

What’s Up? Traverse City Film Festival and Short Film Tracks

TCFF 2017 Poster - Final (1) (1)

The Traverse City Film Festival kicked off this Tuesday, July 25th and reports are that it is amazing, today is Day 3! Below is the ‘daily’ video that talks about two aspects of the festival: food and films about food; and the volunteer experience.

itsashort.com partners with festivals to share significant events, news about the festival or just a genuine honorable mention, just because. We are huge fans of Michael Moore since like the beginning and this festival is a brilliant expression of his vision and that of so many people involved. if you can’t make it this weekend…bookmark it for next year.

Favorite Feature

There’s one film that has special resonance for current and past residents of the City of Detroit: 12th and Clairmont. This film is a kind of documentary about the Detroit Riots in 1967 and the realizations that flowed from that moment in the city’s history.

Finally a great opportunity for short filmmakers! Check out this announcement from The Hollywood Reporter! Its a collaboration between TIFF and Instagram, the launch of a digital short film competition.

For more info and amazing short film, checkout our site: itsashort.com, an online platform for award winning and award nominated short film, video and web series!

What’s Up?! New Short Film News for the New Year!

Jessica Sanderswhat’s up, good people?! 2017 means resolutions and reinvention. just make sure you stay true to yourself and we’ll do the same. Now let’s get to some short film news.

We here at itsashort.com support the equal and equitable representation of voices not often heard in the film industry. Media outlets such as Film Independent are good at drawing attention to programs that work to pump up the volume to make sure those voices are heard.

One such program is Fox Global Directors Initiative (FDI), dedicated to shining a spotlight on the careers of underrepresented filmmakers. Jessica Sanders was one of 20 women directors in FDI’s first cohort and created a short film to express her feelings about what programs like FDI can do to make Hollywood more inclusive, particularly for women. She’s since shared some thoughts and even made a short film about her experience. Check out her mini documentary below.

 

 

This Week’s Short

"The Smiling Man" short film

AJ Briones has a beautifully shot short film in “The Smiling Man,” the story of a little girl facing a purely evil being. This creepy, horror story turns some dark corners, but manages to look wonderfully cinematic while doing it in such a brief span of time. You should not watch with children. In fact, you may need to watch with several adults.

Seriously, people. Silence is used quite well in this piece. Click the link to scare your New Year’s socks off.

 

 

Around the Web…

Ann Arbor Film Fest

Mark March 21-26 off on your calendar as a “you must be here” moment for the much-anticipated Ann Arbor Film Festival. This program contains a myriad of voices from all over the world in both film as well as other presentations of art. From “Video Bureau: Works from an Archive of Chinese Video Art,” programmed by Ellen Zweig to a screening of works by African-American women artists—these folks understand what ‘inclusive’ means.

The 2017 schedule is soon coming, but in the meantime, you can absolutely check out the films from the previous festivals. In other words, you can support the short film and feature filmmakers by purchasing a DVD with last year’s films along with additional highlights from the festival at large. Click here for more details on how you get your hands on some of the most ground-breaking, experimental short film of the year.

 

"Star-Wars-Main-Poster" short film

There seems to be a disturbance in the Force. As in, there’s another take on the highly popular universe that provides an alternate perspective on the franchise. This short film garnered a little bit of steam in Los Angeles and Atlanta screenings last year. Follow the link to watch and let us know what you think. Does it rank among your favorite fan films?

Exciting stuff, good people.

 

Our Mission

Itsashort.com is a platform for filmmakers and creators the world over. We love the short film genre. Plus, we at itsashort.com want to introduce audiences to award-winning and award-nominated artists who create movies, web series, and videos. Check out itsashort.com and subscribe for $2 a month to see the wonderful work of these creatives.

What’s Up?! Short Film NYE!

"The Fisherman" Short Filmwhat’s up, good people?! 2016 was a great year of short film. let’s be sure to make the new year even better!

Even though Kylie Jenner “gifted” us with a smokey short film starring her and her rapper-boyfriend Tyga, we thought we’d end the year by sharing some beautiful and bright animation about the importance of soul mates. Luke Sanders envisions the future through a neon gaze in his sci-fi short, “The Fisherman.” When a young woman takes the reins of her father’s scientific research, the power of attraction turns everything on its ear. Check out the electric short film below. You’ll be hooked! Get it? You get it.

 

This Week’s Short

"Rogue One: A Star Wars Toy Story" Short Film“Rogue One: A Star Wars Toy Story” is the perfect follow up for Raymond Montemayor’s previous (prequel?) “Star Wars: A Toy Story.” In This Week’s Short, a young Star Wars fan forcibly awakens her father’s dark side when she plays with his sacred toys without permission in order to gain his attention. Take a look at this short film to see how it stacks up against the newly-released feature in theaters now. Sure it may not have the same star power (see what we did there?) but we think it’s out of this world.

Click the link to see the toy story from not that long ago in a land that’s actually pretty close.

PS – This fan film was produced for LucasFilms‘ #GoRogue contest. Does this make it canon? Hm…

 

 Around the Web…

Slamdance Film Festival 2017

Oh, so you’re wondering just how you can kick off the new year with some awesome short film consumption? Allow us to assist you. Slamdance Film Festival gets going January 20-26 in Park City, Utah. If you’re still in the throes of your holiday travel, maybe you can add a stop and swing over to check out the schedule for either the Experimental or the Anarchy short film program. Terms like “anarchy” and “rogue”…a pattern, we sense. (That’s Yoda-speak.)

By the way, the image above is from Houston native, Tommy C. Burns who contributed the image as the official 2017 film festival artwork. Gotta love it.

Keeping with the outer space motif, Ridley Scott is back among the stars with the upcoming Alien: Covenant. An apparent sequel to a prequel (Prometheus), the teaser trailer was released over the holiday and has people up in arms. Without giving away too much, there are some familiar faces and a few tweaks to what we know as common alien imagery that may raise some eyebrows. Based on this sneak peek, can you tell us where you think you’d rank this entry in the series? Maybe you’re interested in making your own fan-centered short film based on this iconic franchise… Here’s the mini-trailer:

Exciting stuff, good people.

 

Our Mission

Itsashort.com is a platform for filmmakers and creators the world over. We love the short film genre. Plus, we at itsashort.com want to introduce audiences to award-winning and award-nominated artists who create movies, web series, and videos. Check out itsashort.com and subscribe for $2 a month to see the wonderful work of these creatives.