Last week, there was me, that is Stephen, and my colleague, that is Dean. And we sat in the Labia Theatre trying to make up our rassoodocks what to do with the evening. No milk-plus here. I digress. Well, it was the Shnit Worldwide Shortfilmfestival and we managed to attend opening night, as well as one of the talks. Here’s a recap of our time at 2017’s event!
BTG Lifestyle rolled into Schnit, a short film festival in Cape Town, taking place from 18 – 22 October at the Labia Theatre, keen to meet up with fellow filmmakers to view some great South African and International short films while also enjoying some talks and do a little bit of networking.
We attended the opening night, which had a buzzing atmosphere. Sean Drummond, film selection coordinator of the event and my former tutor at UCT, had been making waves in the film industry having penned short film Apocalypse Now Now as well as feature film Five Fingers for Marseilles. He asked a few weeks ago if we would attend as it would be a great opportunity for us. Little did he know our tickets were already booked.
On the opening night, film enthusiasts gathered to enjoy a bit of networking and live entertainment (Sean was drumming with the band as well, what a talented individual!). We were treated to an assortment of short films thereafter, including some impressive works like a tragic night for a rising policewoman, a calamitous trip to France for two Polish lovebirds, and even a quirky South African film about a mermaid.
We also attended a talk about the process of making Apocalypse Now Now, presented by the creators of the film: director Michael Matthews, author of the novel Charlie Human, writer Sean Drummond and the rest of the team. It was so insightful, especially how they spoke in detail about the process of adapting the novel, assembling the team, acquiring producers and how they achieved the technical aspects that makes it such a beautiful film to watch.
Watch Apocalypse Now Now here:
All in all, a really amazing experience. Hopefully in the years to come we will be exhibiting our works at the film festival as well. Watch this space.
I feel like Dean basically covered the tall and short of it. My favourite film for the evening of opening night was Romantik, about a Polish couple who get separated on their first night in France. We follow the man and see the unlikely series of events that leads him into a pretty crappy adventure through the night.
This comedy was super fun to watch, and anyone who’s traveled to another country can relate to the language barrier issues, or on some level, the fear of somehow ending up in a similar situation to this guy. Poor dude. Solid film though.
Here’s the trailer for Romantik:
In terms of the talk we attended for Apocalypse Now Now, it was unfortunate that it was cut short because we ran out of time. I have to commend the team of filmmakers and producer for the amount of effort they put into that presentation. There was so much detail and ideas there, that it felt like a masterclass in crafting a marketable film. I pity the fool who has aspirations as a filmmaker but didn’t attend that talk.
I felt bad because I asked a question about why South Africans don’t show up to South African films in general, and I think my question was misinterpreted (So if any of you guys are reading this, I’m sorry! I just wanted some additional insight into how to really sell a fresh, new idea for a local audience).
It was really fun being a part of this experience, and seeing all these amazing short films from around the world.
It gave me more confidence and energy as a filmmaker myself to work even harder on my own film projects, and just tell great stories.
We recently did our own short film, which was a segment in a global collaborative film project. You can watch that below:
More on Shnit Worldwide Shortfilmfestival
The festival is described as follows on the official website:
The festival is an exceptional twelve day event with a unique concept – a transnational film festival simultaneously taking place in multiple cities on five continents worldwide, with three main components: shnit PLAYGROUNDS, lasting five days and taking place in all of our PLAYGROUND cities around the world, shnit CINEMAS, in cinemas all around the world, and our shnit FINALE awards ceremony in New York.
Cape Town happens to be one of the playgrounds mentioned above.
This year’s festival winners were as follows:
- Jury Award for shnit Made in South Africa Competition: Zwelethu Radebe for ‘The Hangman’
- Best Cinematography Award: Jacques Naude for ‘Overberg’
- Audience Award: Grant De Sousa for ‘It’s Complicated’
Video recap for Shnit Playground in Cape Town 2016:
ONE DAY TO GO UNTIL #shnit2017 KICKS OFF!Check out all the shnit that went down at last year’s opening night! #letsgetshnifty #shnitcapetown #filmfestival
Posted by Shnit Worldwide Shortfilmfestival on Tuesday, 17 October 2017
Who knows, maybe one day we’ll submit one of our own films to this festival. Wouldn’t that be awesome? For now we’re just working on telling great stories.
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