FEEDBACK LOS ANGELES FILM FESTIVAL – Highlights from the Thursday December 8, 2016 event.

The LOS ANGELES DECEMBER 8 2016 FEEDBACK Film Festival was a night that I personally will always remember. Our first venture to the West Coast was indeed a success because the audience was terrific with their comments and the films were solid all around. That said, it was an education. The next time we hit LA we will make sure that the cinema is filled to capacity.

The theme of the festival was “Attempting to belong”.

All the of the films had a story or situation that was about a character who was attempting to belong to a group or situation. The irony of this theme was that was what we were attempting to do in the city of Los Angeles: belong!

This was a showcase of 7 distinct short films made from all corners of the United States. Films with shoe string budgets and films with budgets in the hundreds of thousands. Films in the genres of Western, Comedy, Romance, Action, Thriller, Sci-Fi, and Musical.

I wasn’t feeling very good the night before but didn’t think nothing of it. Then I awoke the day of the festival in a full fledged sweat. I officially had the flu. I managed to get through the day and moderated the festival without a major crisis. I did screw up the opening because I couldn’t breath very well, but the audience forgave me because of the solid lineup of films.

The Los Angeles audience was terrific. They all seemed to be really taken with the films we showcased. This was a risky festival lineup for us because all the films are hard to categorize in a conventional box. I was worried for many reasons before this festival began – but it turned out that I had nothing to worry about at all.

I so appreciated this night and all of the work my Los Angeles crew of camera operators and volunteers put into it. This will be a festival that I’ll remember for the rest of my life. The gamble of going to Los Angeles paid off and the reason for its success was the filmmakers and the amazing audience. As a former California Governor once said: “I’ll be back!”

– Matthew Toffolo

AUDIENCE FESTIVAL AWARDS

Best Film: MARTY: A WILD WEST NEVERLAND

Best Performances: MARTY: A WILD WEST NEVERLAND

Best Cinematography: HELIO

Best Music: The music from ENCORE

WATCH AUDIENCE FEEDBACK VIDEOS:

festival posterMARTY: A WILD WEST NEVERLAND, 16min., USA, Fantasy/Adventure
WATCH Audience FEEDBACK
festival posterHEY YOU, IT’S ME, 8min., USA, Webseries/Comedy
WATCH Audience FEEDBACK
festival posterWHEN STRANGERS TOUCH YOUR HAIR, 7min., Drama
WATCH Audience FEEDBACK
festival posterHELIO, 20min., USA, Sci-Fi/Action
WATCH Audience FEEDBACK
festival posterORANGE YOU GONNA DANCE WITH ME?, 3min., Comedy/Romance
WATCH Audience FEEDBACK
festival posterHEAD SPACE, 5min, Drama/Thriller
WATCH Audience FEEDBACK
festival posterENCORE, 10min, Drama/Musical
WATCH Audience FEEDBACK

 

Watch FEEDBACK Videos:

Audience Feedback: HEAD SPACE, 5min, Drama/Thriller

See the best of the December 8, 2016 Los Angeles FEEDBACK Film Festival

AUDIENCE FEEDBACK VIDEO:

  MOVIE POSTERHEAD SPACE, 5min, Drama/Thriller
Directed by Emma Huibregtse

A single mother concerned with her son’s inability to cope, sees the tables turn when faced with danger.

Director’s Statement: After numerous scripts of mine were returned by USC faculty members claiming the concepts were “too big” for the scope of our class projects – we had only $1,500 and 5 weeks to make a film from casting to final sound mix! – I knew I had to keep my story simple. In a last minute panic the night before our scripts were due I came up with the concept for Head Space, resorting to the affordable unique location of under the kitchen table as my primary setting.

With my strong interest in cinematography I was inspired by the unique shot compositions and angles offered by a child’s limited perspective in an unusual space. I have no idea how this story came out of me, but I’m glad it did. As my first major production it was an honor to collaborate with our dedicated cast and crew. As a trumpet player music has always played a vital role in my films and the opportunity to work with composer Steve Gaboury to develop the score was incredible. Recording with our live jazz band brought our visuals to an entirely new level. It was a pleasure to work along side such creative professionals. We hope you enjoy the film!

short films short films short films
short films short films short films


 

Audience Feedback: HELIO, 20min., USA, Sci-Fi/Action

See the best of the December 8, 2016 Los Angeles FEEDBACK Film Festival

AUDIENCE FEEDBACK VIDEO:

  MOVIE POSTERHELIO, 20min., USA, Sci-Fi/Action
Directed by Teddy Cecil

One worker sparks an uprising when he attempts to break free of his dystopian underworld.

Introduction

HELIO is a short, visceral film centered on a post-apocalyptic underground society where its citizens mine to sustain their dark existence. Presented by Shadow Council Productions, in association with Innovate Entertainment, HELIO is an independent film from first-time writer/director Teddy Cecil. With the ambitious production scale and challenging VFX elements, the process took almost two years to complete from inception to final cut. This project represents Shadow Council’s first of many properties to be developed and produced in-house.

Director’s Statement

HELIO is the culmination of many talented yet under appreciated artists collaborating tirelessly to create a film where, if we’re successful, you won’t even notice all that’s been accomplished. Instead, you’ll be enjoying the adventure.

Company

Shadow Council Productions is a Los Angeles-based production company dedicated to creating innovative media content. Founded in 2010 and run by Teddy Cecil, Nick Cofino and Brett Miller, Shadow Council started as a small creative outlet, packaging and filming promotional material for other producers and artists. Once the three friends and business partners gained the experience and momentum needed, they shifted focus towards their own projects, the first of which was HELIO.

Shadow Council’s objective is to create unique and epic visual experiences and bring them to audiences everywhere across multiple platforms. Every Shadow Council production is treated like a passion project designed to be commercially viable.

For more information on HELIO or Shadow Council Productions, please email SCP at inquiries@shadowcouncil.com.

short films short films short films
short films short films short films


 

Audience Feedback: ENCORE, 10min, Drama/Musical

See the best of the December 8, 2016 Los Angeles FEEDBACK Film Festival

AUDIENCE FEEDBACK VIDEO:

  MOVIE POSTERENCORE, 10min, Drama/Musical
Directed by Kris Theorin

Lifelong friends November and Rosie, a popular YouTube duo, are hosting a live stream tour of November’s new apartment, an event that forces them to confront their impending separation and uncertain future in real time and online in front of their 500,000 YouTube fans.

Director’s Statement: Encore is a look at the age-old scenario of someone growing up and moving away. It’s something that forces people to change and reevaluate their life. My brothers and I were dealing with this while filming Encore. I was graduating form college and they were graduating from high school. Realizing you are growing apart from old friends is something everyone faces at some point. We wanted to show a unique modern twist on the situation and the world of YouTube stars proved to be an interesting perspective to approach it from. These ordinary teens and twenty-somethings’s find their everyday lives and hobbies a source of entertainment for thousand of people. They have to perform for an audience while doing simple everyday things like walking through their own house. Our film shows what might happen when difficult real life problems arise while they are trying to perform for a crowd.

Film Type:Short, Student

Genres:Coming of age, drama

Runtime:10 minutes 10 seconds

Completion Date:August 22, 2016

Production Budget:7,000 USD

Country of Origin:United States

Country of Filming:United States

Film Language:English

Shooting Format:RED

Aspect Ratio:16:9

Film Color:Color

short films short films short films
short films short films short films


 

Audience Feedback: ORANGE YOU GONNA DANCE WITH ME?, 3min., Comedy/Romance

See the best of the December 8, 2016 Los Angeles FEEDBACK Film Festival

AUDIENCE FEEDBACK VIDEO:

ORANGE YOU GONNA DANCE WITH ME?, 3min., Comedy/Romance
Directed by Mary Gerretsen

A quirky love story between George, Alma and some oranges.

Film Type:Short, Student

Runtime:3 minutes 23 seconds

Completion Date:January 1, 2016

Production Budget:200 USD

Country of Origin:United States

Country of Filming:United States

Shooting Format:Digital

Aspect Ratio:16:9

Film Color:Color

George Martin – Key Cast

Mary Proteau – Key Cast

short films short films short films

Audience Feedback: WHEN STRANGERS TOUCH YOUR HAIR, 7min., Drama

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AUDIENCE FEEDBACK VIDEO:

  MOVIE POSTERWHEN STRANGERS TOUCH YOUR HAIR, 7min., Drama
Directed by Anisha Adusumilli & Samantha Neyland

She fits everywhere but nowhere at the same time.

Introduction

When Strangers Touch Your Hair is a fresh new perspective on interracial dating. Based on true events, this film tells the story of SAM, a 21-year-old who, with a Caucasian mother and African-American father, is the product of an interracial relationship. With a little bit of romance and a whole lot of reality, this is a glimpse at dating when you’re biracial.

Synopsis

Sam and Daniel are a young new couple still getting to know each other. Sam is mixed: black and white and Daniel is white. The two are so wrapped up in each other that neither of them gives any thought to why it might not work. However, once Sam’s friends point out the obvious racial difference between her and her new

guy, it’s all she can think about. Feeling torn and confused Sam ultimately tells Daniel her concern. While his initial reaction is very reassuring, Sam soon learns that one conversation will not solve her problem.

Filmmaker Statement

This film is based very closely on real life experiences. When I grew up the black kids always told me I was white and the white kids always told me I was black. As a kid this was very unsettling. I always felt like I had to pick a side and I hated it because to me that meant picking a parent to love more. Making this film was my way of talking about the insecurities that I’ve always lived with but only recently chose to acknowledge. To me, being biracial comes with its own struggle that is almost never talked about. I made this film because for once I want to talk about it. I think we’ve made a tremendous amount of progress as a society but the fight for equality and acceptance is far from over.

short films short films short films
short films short films short films


 

Audience Feedback: MARTY: A WILD WEST NEVERLAND, 16min., USA, Fantasy/Adventure

See the best of the December 8, 2016 Los Angeles FEEDBACK Film Festival

AUDIENCE FEEDBACK VIDEO:

  MOVIE POSTERMARTY: A WILD WEST NEVERLAND, 16min., USA, Fantasy/Adventure
Directed by Vu Hoang

Set in a world inhabited by only kids. Marty and Dee cross paths with the ruthless One-Eyed Johnny and the Krimson Kids where they experience the harsh realities of tyranny and violence in the West.

Director Statement

In college I remember watching the classic, French film, The 400 Blows by Francois Truffaut and the famous scene of the main character running off to the beach escaping his troubling adolescence. Later, I was introduced to two amazing music videos called Glosoli and Hoppipolla by Sigur Ros. Gosoli is one of the most beautifully shot videos I have ever seen, setting you in a fantastical world of only kids. HoppIpolla follows a group of elders who instead of being your typical old people, they turn back time. They play ding dong ditch, have an epic water balloon battle and a sword fight at a graveyard. Yes, it is a bit ironic, but timeless in every way.

These videos resonated with me for years, leaving me with vivid nostalgia. Looking back, my childhood was a fun and wonderful time, but it was also as dark as it is was joyous. The innocence I once had and the realities I had faced growing up stuck with me. Being bullied in school, having family issues, finding an identity, or being misunderstood are things that are universal in every person’s childhood whether big or small. You are met with realities and are always in the unknown, unsure of what life would entail. Sometimes you have your imagination, a place you call your own. A place that sets you free from what you don’t understand. I often found myself imagining I was a hero of my own story, often depicting myself as a character from my favorite TV shows, standing up to bullies I’ve encountered or protecting the weak from harm. I could never let go of these feelings. Therefore, I sought to recreate them through film.

A few years later, I met my buddy Christopher Guanzon, a young aspiring writer & producer fresh out of USC. After reading a script from his first short film out of college, I felt he would be the perfect fit to help me turn my concept into a short film. With his love for the western genre and my love for bringing raw emotions and themes within my own films, together we formed Marty: A Wild West Neverland. Creating a live action western world with a cast of all kids was not easy, it was not cheap, and the Kickstarter Campaign was a vigorous process. Every obstacle felt impossible to overcome: production days were hot, trucks got stuck in the sand, and over 20 kid actors were scattered on set. However, one of the great things about the film is the lifelong journey I took to make it a reality. This isn’t just a film about kid cowboys and bandits. It’s a film about adolescence. A time when you felt free, confused, happy, and lost. Because we are still, in our every right, forever young.

short films short films short films
short films short films short films