The Savannah College of Art and Design held its 14th annual Savannah Film Festival, October 29 – November 5, 2011 in historic downtown Savannah, Georgia and wrapped with honoring the best films that screened at the festival. This year’s competition films competed for more than $80,000 in cash and prizes.

The Greenlandic film ‘Inuk’ ddirected by American Mike Magidson was the big winner, taking home the awards for Best Narrative Feature, Best Director, and Best Editing.

2011 Savannah Film Festival award winners
Best Documentary — “These Amazing Shadows.”

Best Narrative Feature, Best Director, Best Editing — “Inuk.”

Best SCAD Student Competition Award — “The Secret Number”

Special Jury Award — “Minka.”

Best Animated Film — “Bottle.”

Best Short — “North Atlantic.”

Best Student Animation — “Create.”

Silver Screen Society’s Best Short Film by a SCAD Student — “Bone’Yeerd.”

HBO Films Student Competition Award 2011 — “The Reality Clock.”

HBO Films Producer Award 2011 — “Grenouille d’Hiver — Winter Frog”


The 2011 Savannah Film Festival competition films included the following:

Animated Shorts

USA, 2010, 5:25 min., Blu-Ray
Director/Producer/Writer: Kirsten Lepore
Synopsis: Animated on location at a beach, in snow, and underwater, this stop-motion short details a transoceanic conversation between two characters via objects in a bottle.

The Maker
Australia, 2011, 5:17 min., Blu-Ray
Director: Christopher Kezelos
Producers: Christopher Kezelos, Christine Kezelos
Writer: Christopher Kezelos
Synopsis: A strange creature races against time to make the most important and beautiful creation of his life.

Orange O Despair (Orange Ô Desespoir)
France, 2011, 3:35 min., Blu-Ray
Director/Producer/Writer: John Banana
Synopsis: What happens when a small sad orange decides to leave for the other side of the shop to meet a bunch of fun dancing pineapples?

USA, 2011, 4:04 min., HDCam
Director: Jason Maurer
Animation: Jason Maurer
Synopsis: Ripening is a cathartic journey that explores the inner turmoil of a crumbling relationship and the fruitful outcome of the experience.

Salesman Pete and the Amazing Stone from Outer Space!
France, 2010, 6:55 min., DVD
Co-directors: Anthony Vivien, Marc Bouyer, Max Loubaresse
Animation: Marc Bouyer
Synopsis: Pete is a nice and clumsy salesman. But he’s also a deadly super secret agent with a microprocessor implanted into his brain by some mad scientists from the government! He has to secretly stop a bunch of bad guys who stole a magic stone that can change anything into seafood.

Something Left, Something Taken
USA, 2010, 10:15 min., HDCam
Directors/Writers/Animation: Ru Kuwahata and Max Porter
Synopsis: Everyone who enters a crime scene leaves something behind and takes something away. “Something Left, Something Taken” is a 10 minute animated dark comedy about a vacationing couples’ encounter with a man they believe to be the Zodiac Killer.

The Thomas Beale Cipher
USA, 2010, 10:10 min., Blu-ray
Director: Andrew Allen
Producer: Jason Sondhi
Writers: Andrew Allen, Josh Froscheiser
Synopsis: Professor White, cryptographer extraordinaire, is on the trail of the notoriously uncrackable Thomas Beale cipher-a century-old riddle hiding the location of a fortune in gold that has tormented its pursuers since inception. But White is not alone-shadowy forces are tight on his tail.

Documentary Films

USA, 2011, 50:33 min., Digibeta
Directors/Producers: Christine Anthony, Owen Masterson
Synopsis: Fed up with corporate America and its influence on a broken food system, a growing number of educated young people aim to solve some of the current system’s inequities by growing clean, fair food. Mostly landless, they borrow, rent or manage farmland in order to fulfill their dreams of doing something meaningful with their lives.

Sweden, 2010, 1:14:00 min., HDCam
Director: David Dworsky
Producer: Adam Svanell
Synopsis: In the last couple of years producing music, films and other forms of creative works has gone from a privilege for a select few, to an art form almost as accessible as the pen and paper. PressPausePlay is the first real testimony of the digi-creative revolution. It’s a 90 minute global journey capturing how digital technology and mindset has transformed the concept of art and culture.

The City Dark
USA, 2011, 1:22:17 min., Blu-Ray
Director/Producer: Ian Cheney
Synopsis: The City Dark is a feature documentary about the loss of night. After moving to NYC from rural Maine, filmmaker Ian Cheney asks a simple question – do we need the stars? Exploring the threat of killer asteroids in Hawaii, tracking hatching turtles along the Florida coast, and rescuing injured birds on Chicago streets, Cheney unravels the myriad implications of a globe glittering with lights

These Amazing Shadows
USA, 2010, 1:26:00 min., Blu-Ray
Directors: Paul Mariano, Kurt Norton
Producers: Christine O’Malley, Paul Mariano, Kurt Norton
Synopsis: What do the films “Casablanca,” “Blazing Saddles” and “West Side Story” have in common? Besides being popular, they have also been deemed “culturally, historically or aesthetically significant” by the Library of Congress and listed on The National Film Registry. “These Amazing Shadows” tells the history and importance of The Registry, a roll call of American cinema treasures that reflect the diversity of film, and indeed the American experience itself.

Narrative Features

A Year in Mooring
USA, 2011, 91 min., HDCam
Director: Chris Eyre
Producers: Kevin Reidy, Sally Jo Effenson
Writer: Peter Vanderwall
Cast: Ayelet Zurer, James Cromwell, Jon Tenney, Taylor Nichols, Josh Lucas
Synopsis: A successful businessman, attempting to escape his past, moves aboard a dilapidated boat in a remote harbor. Told over movements framed by the calendar year, the Young Mariner meets other harbor inhabitants with pasts of their own.

France/Greenland, 2010, 90 min., HDCam
Director: Mike Magidson
Producers: Mike Magidson, Sylvie Barbe
Writers: Mike Magidson, Jean-Michel Huctin
Cast: Gaaba Petersen, Ole-Jorgen Hammeken
Synopsis: In Greenland’s capital, Nuuk, sixteen year-old Inuk lives a troubled life with his alcoholic mother and violent step-father. One morning, after pulling the half-frozen boy out of an abandoned car, social services decide to send Inuk north to a children’s home on a tiny island in the middle of the arctic sea-ice. Shortly after arriving, Inuk meets Ikuma, a local polar bear hunter who has his own share of problems, and is asked to take Inuk on his annual seal-hunting trip. When Inuk, the troubled boy from the city, joins Ikuma, the last great hunter of the North, on this epic dogsled journey, they will face much more than the bitter cold and fragile sea-ice. The most difficult part of the journey will be the one they must make within themselves.

Let Go
USA, 2011, 109 min., HDCam
Director: Brian Jett
Producer: Leif Lillihaugen
Writer: Brian Jett
Cast: Alexandera Holden, Amy Stiller, Brian Huskey, Catherine Reitman, David Denman, Dov Davidoff, Edward Asner, Gillian Jacobs, Johnny Pemberton, Kali Hawk, Kevin Hart, Kirk Fox, Maria Thayer, Rance Howard, Simon Helberg
Synopsis: A comedy that follows the intertwining stories of Walter Dishman, a melancholy parole officer struggling with the doldrums of married life, and three eccentric ex-convicts that were recently placed under his supervision. Using the afflictions of modern love as a common thread, the stories build to a poignant climax as each of the characters struggle to free themselves from both literal and figurative bonds.

Take Me Home
USA, 2011, 97min, Blu-Ray
Director: Sam Jaeger
Producer: Michael Hobert, Jane Kelly Kosek
Writer: Sam Jaeger
Cast: Sam Jaeger, Amber Jaeger, Victor Garber, Cristine Rose, Lin Shaye
Synopsis: When Claire jumps in Thom’s beat-up cab in New York, neither realize that they have just begun a journey together of self-discovery that will have them crossing the United States in an effort to find home.

Professional Shorts

Library of Dust
USA, 2011, 16:20 min., DCP
Director: Ondi Timoner
Co-Director: Robert James
Producers: Robert James, Ondi Timoner, Kyle Parker
Cast: David Maisel, Senator Peter Courtney, Mary Ellen Mark, Dr. Marvin Fickle, Rick Attig, Rob Finch
Synopsis: A tour of the Oregon State Hospital involving the local press and a State Senator was conducted to uncover the deplorable conditions of the hospital. What they didn’t expect to find was a storeroom full of human ashes dating back to the late 1800’s. Thousands of corroded copper urns containing the cremated remains of unclaimed psychiatric patients were discovered. Photos are taken of the mysterious corrosive effect on the canisters and several histories of these forgotten souls are revealed in this unique tale.

Little Angel (Angelito)
USA/Brazil, 2011, 13:20 min., Blu-Ray
Director: Paula Lima
Producer: Paula Lima, Vitor Coral
Writer: Vitor Coral
Cast: Angela Carrizosa, John Benson, Julia Smyth
Synopsis: Lacking his own mother’s attention, Danny tries to earn his nanny’s respect by behaving defiantly. He keeps pushing at Luisa until she responds inappropriately. Danny threatens to tell his mother about Luisa’s slip up and get her fired. But can he take the next step?

Love, Lots of It
USA, 2011, 14 min., Digibeta
Director: Rob Feld
Producers: Asger Hussain, Chiemi Karasawa, Craig Lifschutz, Hernan Michael Otano, Joshua Green, Lea-Beth Shapiro, Lloyd Davis
Writer: Rob Feld
Cast: Campbell Scott, Kathleen McElfresh, McCaleb Burnett
Synopsis: A Faustian parable in which a young woman, confused by her life and having made false assumptions about what will make her happy, goes to the proverbial crossroads to meet a man she has heard can give her what she wants. When she arrives at the barren spot, her vulnerability moves the man to offer her a way out, a chance at real happiness, if only she can recognize it.

USA, 2010, 15:07 min., Digibeta
Director: Davina Pardo
Producers: Andrew Blum, Davina Pardo
Synopsis: In 1967, an American journalist and a Japanese architect rescued an ancient farmhouse found in the snow country of Japan, and their lives were forever changed. Minka is an intimate story about architecture, memory, and the meaning of home.

North Atlantic
Portugal/United Kingdom, 2010, 15 min., HDCam
Producer/Director/Writer: Bernardo Nascimento
Producer: James Youngs
Cast: Clive Russell, Francisco Tavares, Grant Masters, Guilherme Mendonca Synopsis: An isolated air-traffic controller in an island off the Azores archipelago receives a transatlantic emergency signal from a lost plane. As the engagement with the lone pilot unfolds, it emerges that their newfound friendship will not last through the night.

Japan/USA, 2011, 19:30 min., Blu-Ray
Director: Dean Yamada
Producers: Ellie Pappuleas, Paul Nethercott, Rachel van der Merwe, Yu Shibuya
Writer: Yu Shibuya
Cast: Aduchi Kaneko, Ai Ozaki, Atsurou Tokuoka, Masayuki Yui, Sahori Ehara, Sakae Kimura, Yugo Saso
Synopsis: Tamotsu is expecting a persimmon to dry and yet he cannot accept that it is time for a man on his deathbed to die. As the persimmon mysteriously, or supernaturally, holds out from drying, so Tamotsu tries his hardest to keep the man alive. Only when Tamotsu has let go can the persimmon take its natural course.

USA, 2010, 8 min., DCP
Producer: Tim Harms
Writer: Neil LaBute
Cast: Julia Stiles, Elizabeth Greer, Jamie Anderson, Marin Ireland, T. Lynn Mikeska
Synopsis: A misdirected text message prompts a young woman to meet the wife of her boyfriend at a cafe. The wife’s husband has been telling her he is going to leave the wife to be with her, yet he continues to delay their plans. After receiving a sexy text message meant for his wife, the young woman decides to talk to the wife and get the real story of what is going on in their relationship.

Winter Frog (Grenouille D’hiver)
France, 2011, 17:43 min., DCP
Producer: Jean Maurice Belayche
Writer: Slony Sow
Cast: Gerard Depardieu, Sabine Lenoel, Eriko Takeda
Synopsis: Benjamin, a winemaker, sees his wife die in his arms following a long illness. He feels there is only one thing left for him: death. But a young Japanese woman, coming specially to taste his wine, will gently bring him to mourn the death of his wife by a series of symbols and exchanges between two cultures.

Student Shorts

USA, 2011, 9 min., HDCam
Writer/Director/Producer: Tom Salvaggio
Synopsis: The Gothic tale of a lonely farmer who descends into madness when he cannot let go of the woman he loves.

USA, 2011, 13 min., Digibeta
Writer/Director/Producer: T.C. Webb
Synopsis: In this documentary short, two men challenge their survival skills and rock climbing abilities on a brutal trek across the breathtaking landscape of Canyonlands National Park in Utah.

Clear Blue
USA, 2010, 20 min., HDCam
Director: Lindsay MacKay
Producer: Brent Martin
Writer: Lindsay MacKay
Cast: Chris Sheffield, Jeff Clarke, Nancy Linehan Charles
Synopsis: Simon, an eager 16 year old, gets his first job as a lifeguard at the local indoor pool. At first his job is dull, until he notices Flova, a 71 year old woman who comes to swim every morning. One day Simon follows Flova into the change room, and discovers a startling secret…

Cold Country
USA, 2011, 1:14 min., Blu-Ray
Director: Chris Palmer, Travis Overstreet
Writer/Producer: Chris Palmer, Travis Overstreet
Synopsis: In this short biographical animation inspired by the exile of Stalin, a lone bear rides an abandoned train through the frozen Siberian wilderness.

USA, 2011, 2 min, Blu-Ray
Director: Dan Mackenzie
Writer: Dan Mackenzie
Producer: Dan Mackenzie and Nicholas Reichard
Synopsis: A mad scientist sets out to create a pet monster within parallel worlds of an imaginary laboratory and the reality of a boy’s bedroom.

Galeana No. 8
USA/Mexico, 2011, 12 min., HDCam
Director: Andres Perez-Duarte
Producer: Sebastian Celis and David Guti Rosado
Writer: Andres Perez-Duarte
Cast: Eduardo España, Christian Vasquez and Mary Francis Reyes
Synopsis: Two parallel stories unfold – two kidnappers deal with their hostage’s destiny; two co-workers receive a muffled phone call from their boss who appears to be in danger. While the two kidnappers decide what to do with the hostage, a revealing twist proves a new perspective to each side of the phone call.

USA, 2010, 15 min., Blu-Ray
Director/Writer: Jeremy Craig
Producer: Catherine Shao
Cast: Cullen Chaffin, Dean West, Jessica Heap, Lance Nichols
Synopsis: Set on the imperiled coast of Louisiana, Terrebonne is the meditative story of a brother and sister who encounter unexpected trouble when they venture deep into the swamp in search of the mythic ivory-billed woodpecker.

The Girl and the Fox
USA, 2011, 5:30 min., Blu-Ray
Director: Tyler Kupferer
Producer: Nick Allred
Writer: Tyler Kupferer
Synopsis: Ilona, a nine-year-old girl who lives in the wilderness with her mother and father, has fallen on hard times. Supplies are running low, and when a mysterious fox starts killing their livestock, she has no choice but to track down the strange creature in order to ensure the survival of her family.

The Reality Clock
USA, 2011, 7 min., Digibeta
Director/Writer: Amanda Tasse
Cast: J. Louis Reid, Marco Tazioli
Synopsis: The Reality Clock is an experimental animated portrait of an elderly watchmaker’s struggle to accept the influence of early stage dementia on his identity and sense of time. Through contemplating who the raw essence of a person is when stripped bare of new memories and rational clarity, “The Reality Clock” searches for a sense of beauty and peace amidst the confusion.

The Renter
USA, 2011, 10 min., HDCam
Director: Jason Carpenter
Cast: Corey Shiffman, Taylor Sanches
Synopsis: A young boy is dropped off at an elderly woman’s home for the day. A lone man, who rents a room, adds to the unsettling atmosphere. The savage slaughter of a chicken makes this daycare a harsh and confusing world for the boy, who learns caring can be shown in unexpected ways.

The Secret Number
USA, 2011, 14 min., Blu-Ray
Director: Colin Levy
Producers: Frank Ponce, Roque Nonini
Writer: Colin Levy
Cast: Daniel Jones, Tom Nowicki
Synopsis: Tomlin, a psychiatrist in a mental hospital, has a disturbing conversation with one of his patients, a mathematician who intends to prove the existence of a secret integer between three and four. When he begins to dig deeper, the mathematician mysteriously disappears from the hospital, confirming Tomlin’s hunch that their fates are deeply entwined.



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