The 2016 Palm Springs International ShortFest will screen June 21 to 27, at the Camelot Theatres in Palm Springs, and showcase 327 films including 46 World Premieres, 63 North American Premieres and 13 U.S. Premieres.
Programming Director Penelope Bartlett is excited to be embracing some of the evolving trends in world cinema, “We are showing more documentaries, more experimental films, and more of the hard to categorize, hybrid films which play with film form in exciting ways. We cast the net far and wide to ensure we had more films from less represented regions, like Africa and the Middle East, and films by indigenous filmmakers and filmmakers of color. In terms of female director representation, although there is still a ways to go to achieve parity, we are heartened to see that a third of our program is by female directors.”
This year’s star-studded shorts feature Academy Award® winners and nominees, as well as film and television stars including Richard Kind in Black Swell (USA); Boy (Canada) directed by Connor Jessup; Aitana Sánchez-Gijón in Disco Inferno (Spain); Robert Emms and Sarah Parish in Dunroamin (UK); Jack O’Connell in Home (Kosovo/USA); Beck Bennett and a cameo by Conan O’Brien in How To Lose Weight In 4 Easy Steps (USA); The Lagoon (Mexico/USA) directed by PSIFF alumnus Aaron Schock; Oscar Isaac and the voice of Kristen Wiig in Lightningface (USA); Guy Pearce in Lorne (Australia); Steve Buscemi, Jane Krakowski and Zosia Mamet in Mildred and the Dying Parlor (USA); the US premiere of A Most Peculiar Man (USA) directed by Dan Ireland; The Mulberry Bush (USA) directed by Neil LaBute; Caroline Lagerfelt in Napoleon in Exile (USA); Randy Harrison in Photo Op (USA); Tyrese Gibson and Jennifer Hudson in Shame (USA); Kevin Rahm and Ray Wise in Taking Flight (USA); Aiden Guillen in Violet (Ireland) and James Franco, Jack Kehler and Abigail Spencer in A Walk in Winter (USA).
ShortFest jurors include: Peter Bart (Deadline), Jeremy Boxer, Zorianna Kit (Huffington Post), Molly Parker (actress House of Cards), Rachel Samuels (Conde Nast) and Alison Willmore (Buzzfeed).
Over $115,000 in prizes, including $20,000 in cash awards, will be given out in 21 categories to this year’s short films in competition. The Panavision Best North American Short Award winner will receive a camera package valued at $60,000. First place winners in four categories will automatically become eligible for consideration by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) for a possible Academy Award® nomination. Over the course of 22 years, the Festival has presented 101 films that have gone on to receive Academy Award® nominations. Winners will be announced on Sunday, June 26 at a Closing Night screening and reception.