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Winners Spring 2022

Best Microfilm
The End

Director: Alexandria Siah

Country: United States

Project Type: Short

Overview: After watching her gallant knight die at the end of the film, it’s up to the determined Princess Hilderose to take matters into her own hands to stop her love and earn her happily ever after.

Best Documentary Short
Postcard from Hallowell Maine

Director/Writer David C Benner

Producer: Christopher D Walters

Country: United States

Project Type: Short

Overview: This is a 15 minute documentary on Hallowell, Maine. It expresses the spirit of the quaint city and boasts of its history.

Best Feature, Best Feature Director
Under Spanish Skies

Director/Writer: Nathan Buck

Producer: Christina Mallet

Country: Germany

Project Type: Feature

Overview: After the sudden death of her husband, a reclusive artist invites life long friends to her farm in Spain and reveals a shocking plan. before the weekend ends, the friends must reveal secrets from the past that will drive her toward a devastating choice.

Director Statement: When I set out to create the world of this film, I made for myself a set of parameters that were both practical and thematic: A short time span, a single location, and characters who have known each other a long time. Films that have left a big impression on me: “La Règle du Jeu”, “Persona”, “Knife in the Water”, “The Big Chill”, and “Festen” ... are all movies that rely on great performances, the excavation of memory and a claustrophobic world that heightens sexual and dramatic tension. The story that this film is based on is true, told to me by a close friend several years ago. While all of the details of Leah’s story and character are different, the core mystery of her decision is the same paradox that fascinated me when I first heard about it. As the film has evolved, every step of the way I have had to remind myself to stay faithful to the true north of this story: a tragic choice engendered out of friendship, loyalty, and love.

Best Fantasy/Sci-Fi Short

Director/Writer: Mark Benmore

Producer: Gavin Saville

Country: United Kingdom

Project Type: Short

Overview: A lonely detectorist stumbles across a short distance teleportation device with horrifying consequences.

Director Statement: I started producing films in 2015 when I started up a group called London Short Film ( As much as I really wanted to make films I just didn't have enough knowledge to make the visions going around in my head, so I set out to create a meet up group to find other local London filmmakers to design and create great new films together. As well as producing and writing short films I have also been in the Art Design department on many others, an area I feel is key to creating the right feel for any scene.

Best Drama Short, Best Director, Best Cinematography, Best Sound Design
For I Am Dead
For I Am Dead

Director/Writer: Patricia Delso Lucas

Producers: Patricia Delso Lucas, Al Nazemian

Director Of Photography: Dominika Podczaska

Sound Design: David Ferral

Film Scoring & Composer: Tom Bourgeois

Country: Belgium

Project Type: Short

Overview: In late-1800s Europe, Oscar, a wealthy but lonely middle-aged man who has lived a decadent, extravagant life in a chateau filled with wine, courtesans and opium, confesses love to his gardener Jude before he dies of his excesses.

Director Statement: “A period piece, 18 minutes. A dark, surreal drama. A story about unrequited love, self-acceptance and the limits of the sane mind.” With the script of For I Am Dead, I wanted to show the personal and social struggle to accept the nature of who an individual is, when his/her desires or choices do not correspond to the majority. In this particular case, Oscar is fighting with his repressed homosexuality, but this is just one of many possible incarnations portraying this dilemma. I chose to set the story at this moment in time, the late 1800s, with the intention to accentuate the fact that these kinds of questions, although they have progressed, are still relevant today. Will belonging to a minority ultimately end in tragedy?

Best Animation Short

The House of Seville

Director/Producer: John Calder

Writer: Bronwyn Calder

Music: Georges Bizet

Sound Designer: John Calder

Country: New Zealand

Project Type: Short

Overview: An animated mock horror movie partly based on "Carmen". When the equinox lines up with a lunar eclipse, there is magic empowering ghosts to cross to the opposite side of the Earth. The Ghost of Carmen leaves her usual haunt of Seville, Spain to descend on Henderson, New Zealand for a night of grandly operatic horror and mayhem as she manipulates the people there into reenacting her own dramatic violent death. Logical and sensible businesswoman Victoria drives through Henderson playing "Carmen" on her car stereo and runs out of petrol. Her cellphone is out of credit. Boutique shopping center "The House of Seville" has its lights ablaze and looks welcoming. Don't go there, Victoria!

Director Statement: Independent Alternative Film-making as co-operative passion projects is a pathway to mainstream film-making for some of our people. While on the indie journey we also enjoy freedom from chasing mainstream funding. That means freedom of expression to take on areas like satire and experimentation where the risk-adverse and sequel-obsessed mainstream is under performing.

Best Short Screenplay

Children of the night
Children of the night

Writers: David Crennell, Raymond Biddle

Country: Ireland

Project Type: Short Script

Overview: An adolescent boy comes to terms with his father’s passing when he is forced to go trick or treating with his imaginary friend Bela Lugosi after his friends ditch him. This is a coming-of-age comedy-drama short based on Halloween Night 1993. The tone of this short is similar to that of Jojo Rabbit.

Best Thriller/Horror


Director: James Lau

Writers: James Lau, Jason Njoroge

Producer: Steven Jeram

Country: United Kingdom

Project Type: Short, Student

Overview: Following eviction, three friends down on their luck decide to rob their greedy landlord's house whilst he's away... but there's somebody home.

Best Comedy Short
The Idiot's Guide
The Idiot's Guide

Director/Writer/Producer: Peter Maughan

Country: United Kingdom

Project Type: Short

Overview: Three Idiots go on a journey of enlightenment by using social media as a guide to life. Everything starts out badly, and only seems to get worse.

Director Biography: Peter graduated from Bournemouth Film School with a degree in Film Production; Editing, and has spent the last few years working as a Colourist and Editor in the film industry, working on Short Films, Music Videos and Documentaries. Having written a number of shorts during his time at university, "The Idiot's Guide" is his first outing as director, having shot, edited and sound designed the film as well.

Best Long Short
Succeed to Escape

Director/Writer: Fabian Siebecke

Producers: Fabian Siebecke, Daniel Navarro Perez

Country: Germany

Project Type: Short

Overview: "Succeed To Escape" is a story about five young adults locked into a basement room and have to face trials to be freed. During these trials, they face their conflicts within themselves and with each other.

Director Biography: Fabian Lionel Siebecke was born in Berlin on January 18, 2001 and attended school from 2007 to 2019, where he graduated from a german high school with the "Abitur" (german equivalent to the SAT test). During his time in school, he produced and directed his web-series "The Good Evil" with friends. In 2019, he made a few short movies in the computer game "Grand Theft Auto V". In early 2021, he founded a new streaming platform for machinima movies called Baker+. Machinimas are movies made with game engines and/or with tools such as Blender, Unreal Engine 5. He was involved as a Producer in two Original Movies and is involved as Executive Producer in new Baker+ Originals in development or production.

Best Art/Experimental
Among the People

Director: Jody Cleaver

Music: Natalie Trayling

Country: Australia

Project Type: Experimental, Short

Overview: Synesthesia and music medicine, in watercolours. A visualisation of the original piano composition by Natalie Trayling.

Director Statement: The piano composition by Natalie Trayling is amazingly, improvised: as is the film. Or, as close as possible to improvisation, working frame by frame.

Best Original Score
The Clay and The Girl

Director/Writer: George Louridas

Producer: Aluxal Karachalios

Original Music: Christos Danakas

Country: Greece

Project Type: Short

Overview: Pavlos and Maria, a young married couple, face the recent loss of their daughter. Pavlos, being a sculptor, decides to create a statue in her loving memory. He finds the model who triggers his inspiration but things go unexpectedly wrong. Maria watches his affection for the young model growing and rings the bell for their marriage that is about to break.

Director Statement: "The Clay and the Girl" is the first professional film that was ever shot in Agrinio, Greece and it is a Greek - Mexican co-operation. The film showcases statues by the renown Greek sculptors Christos Kapralos and Vasilis Papasaikas.

Best Short
Amara's Smile

Director/Writer/Producer: DC Brandon

Country: Canada

Project Type: Short

Overview: After being stood up for a date, a woman runs into an old college classmate who gives her an unforgettable night under the stars.

Director Statement: We all die but true love never does. Setting this story against the backdrop of an ancient Chinese poem allowed me to position the love story in a more eternal way, one that extends beyond our horizon into the stars above. In this small, low-budget indie drama, perhaps one can find some hope for love in troubled times.

Best Trailer/Teaser
Death in the Wire

Director/Writer/Producer: Bob Eckhard

Country: United Kingdom

Project Type: Teaser

Overview: A young solicitor is targeted by assassins who believe she knows about their plan to kill world leaders on route to the G12 summit

Best Actor/Actress
The Dark Caller
The Dark Caller

Directors/Writers: Erik Herrera, Danny Hayden

Producer: Danny Hayden

"Key Cast": Danny Hayden

Country: United States

Project Type: Short

Overview: Charlie calls Damon by mistake, and the calls keep coming...

Director Statement: This is Danny Hayden's first Directing project! I co-wrote The Dark Caller with Erik. I have been writing for many years. Acting for 18 years. This project allowed Me the opportunity to use my own views on how best to show my Acting talent. Filmmakers I admire are George Lucas, Peter Jackson, and JJ Abrams. Danny Hayden entertains to bring people out of their minds for a while, so nothing else exists. This is the first of many to come!

Best Feature Screenplay
Bad Love Tigers

Writer: Kevin L. Schewe, MD, FACRO

Country: United States

Genres: Sci-Fi, Historical fiction, Young Adult, Adventure, Time Travel, Aliens, Area 51

Overview: It is New Year’s Eve, 1974, in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, and the fun-loving and adventurous teens of the Bad Love Gang are ambushed by a Russian KGB agent. This propels them to use the White Hole Project Time Machine to time travel back to World War II. The gang meets with President Franklin Delano Roosevelt who guides them on their mission to protect a mysterious alien spaceship and America’s top-secret Area 51. On their perilous mission, the gang must deal with Russian, Chinese, and Indian espionage forces who stand in their path. Along the way, the gang encounters danger, intrigue, betrayal, and a little romance. Ultimately, the intrepid Bad Love Gang triumphs over their adversaries to protect the alien spaceship and maintain the security of Area 51. It's Stand by Me Meets Raiders of the Lost Ark.

Writer Statement: I read the true WWII story of “The Phantom Fortress” in early December 2018 and became inspired (felt like I was “struck by lightning”) to write Bad Love Strikes, the first book in the series, based on time travel and my boyhood memories of our childhood “Bad Love Gang”. Our childhood neighborhood gang was always on an adventure and these memories formed the basis for the story. Nine of the Bad Love Gang characters are based on real people, two of those have people have died and seven (six-plus me) know they are referenced in the book. We all had nicknames growing up. My nickname was “Bubble Butt” or “BB” and I am the narrator of the story. I have always loved time-travel stories and the science of physics (that is what attracted me to become a radiation oncologist). Connecting all these dots, brought the book together in an organic way!

Best TV Script
Best Life Ever
Best Life Ever

Writers: Tina Gandhi, Sarah Weale

Country: United States

Ganre: Drama

Overview: A spiritual hedonist with a glamorous past and a mysterious connection to a charismatic Indian guru freewheels through life with the blessing of her trusty ouija board. “Wait, you slept with the father AND the son? … And their guru!”