The 2017 Flickerfest Short Film Festival announced their major award winners on Sunday, January 15 to a packed crowd gathered on Australia’s Bondi Beach. Launched in 1991, Flickerfest has grown to be one of Australia’s highest profile film festivals and ranks alongside Tropfest for promoting the works of emerging filmmakers. Several of the top awards are officially accredited by the American Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences.
Flickerfest’s major awards include the Flickerfest Award for Best International Short Film, Yoram Gross Award for Best International Animation, Virgin Australia Award for Best Australian Short Film, Flickerfest Award for Best Documentary Short Film, Flickerfest GreenFlicks Award for Best Environmental Short Film and the Windows on Europe Award for Best EU Short Film.
Major 2017 winners are:
Flickerfest Award for Best International Short Film (Academy Accredited)
UNGAR (CUBS) (Iceland)
Writer/Director: Nanna Kristín Magnúsdóttir
Icelandic Actress and director Nanna Kristín Magnúsdóttir’s second short Ungar (Cubs) won the main award for Best International Short Film. As an actress Nanna has numerous credits to her name, including lead roles in independent features such as Paris of the North (2014) and a recurring role in the Icelandic TV series Der Island-Krimi. Nanna’s short film directorial debut Playing with Balls, screened as part of Toronto International Film Festival Short Cuts Program and at the Helsinki Film Festival in 2014. Ungar is a 19-minute film that tells the story of a single father who wants to fulfill his young daughter’s wish to throw a slumber party for her friends, but it turns out to be more of a challenge than he thought.
Yoram Gross Award for Best International Short Animation (Academy Accredited)
MR. MADILA (UK)
Writer/Director/Producer: Rory Waudby-Tolley
Rory Waudby-Tolley’s animated short Mr Madila earned the Yoram Gross Award for Best International Short Animation. Mr Madila is the UK animator’s first major film festival release, which won the Best Student Animation Prize at last year’s Palm Springs International Shortfest. Rory works with the commercial animation firm Berkus in London and graduated from the Royal College of Art in 2015. Mr Madila documents a series of conversations between the filmmaker and a gifted spiritual healer, exploring the inner mind, the universe, and the nature of reality itself.
Flickerfest Award for Best Short Documentary Film (Academy® Accredited)
WIĘZI (CLOSE TIES) (Poland)
Director: Zofia Kowalewska
Close Ties from Polish director Zofia Kowalweska won the Flickerfest’s Best Short Documentary Film award. Zofia’s short is about Barbara and Zdzisław’s 45th wedding anniversary that has been complicated by the fact that Zdzisław spent eight of those years living with another woman. The work has been shortlisted for this year’s Academy Awards, where it will compete for the Best Documentary Short Subject Oscar. Close Ties won the Silver Dragon at the 56th Krakow Film Festival and will screen at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival.
Flickerfest GreenFlicks Award for Best Environmental Short Film
GOD’S ACRE (Canada)
Director: Kelton Stepanowich
Canadian director Kelton Stepanowich’s God’s Acre won the GreenFlicks Award for Best Environmental Short Film. God’s Acre is Kelton’s first short film, that was selected to screen at the Toronto International Film Festival and Edmonton Film Festival in 2016. The 15-minute short was shot with a small crew in Northern Alberta and tells the story of an Aboriginal man living alone in the Canadian wilderness. “He’s a character in isolation. Now he has to deal with a problem greater than him. The problems of the outside world coming to his doorstep, ” Kelton told CBC news.
Windows on Europe Award for Best EU Short Film
IL SILENZIO (THE SILENCE) (Italy, France)
Writer/ Director: Ali Asgari, Farnoosh Samadi
Adding to an already stellar year for directors Ali Asgari and Farnoosh Samadi, The Silence won the Best EU Short Film Prize. The Cannes Film Festival Palme d’Or-nominated film is about a young Kurdish girl who holds back important information from her mother when asked to translate during a visit to a doctor’s office in Italy. The Silence won best film at the Berlin Interfilm Festival and scored major prizes at Hamptons and Leeds Film Festivals in 2016. Ali Asgari is a highly-awarded Iranian director who first gained attention in 2013 when his short More Than Two Hours screened at Cannes.
Virgin Australia Award for Best Australian Short Film, (Academy Accredited)
Director: Christopher Sferrazza
Beast had its world premiere at Flickerfest, scoring the major prize for Best Australian Short Film. From Australian director Christopher Sferrazza, Beast is about “how far you’ll go for love inside the small town pack mentality, where the beasts attack and devour as one. If you’re not beast… you’re prey”. Sferrazza is a director and cinematographer who splits his time between the US and Australia. Last year he released the documentary Tom Wills, about the founder of Australian Rules Football.
To see the full list of award winners, jury prizes and special mentions visit the Flickerfest website.