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Aspen Shortsfest 2006 is a Wrap!

Premiers, Packed Houses, Prestigious Jury Awards and More…

Aspen Shortsfest celebrated an eclectic mix of short films including several world and North American premiers to big crowds and dozens of film guests from around the world during its 15th edition. Laughter, applause—even screams—could be heard throughout the festival in Aspen and Carbondale. The Audience Favorite Award was a 3-way split between The Danish Poet (North American premier, Torill Kove, Canada/Norway; animation), Monster (Jennifer Kent, Australia; stylish horror) and Smitten (Nancy Kelly, USA; documentary). Special guests Paul Haggis (Crash), Jason Reitman & Dan Dubiecki (Thank You for Smoking), Peter Segal (The Longest Yard), Mark Polish (Northfork), Frank Pierson (Dog Day Afternoon), and Bob Rafelson (Five Easy Pieces) engaged audiences with their insightful and fun onstage discussions.


Executive Director, Laura Thielen, comments: “It was a memorable festival with Aspen Shortsfest playing host to packed audiences and an international array of filmmakers. We welcomed school kids, emerging talent and established industry professionals, as well as diverse crowds, who attended film after film. It was a pleasure to see everyone come together in this intimate mountain setting and journey around the world through film.” In addition, filmmaker guests visited over 700 school kids in classrooms valley-wide through Aspen Filmfest’s Filmmakers to the Classroom program.


All films that screened at Aspen Shortsfest competed for a record $28,000 in cash and other prizes. The Academy Award-qualifying competition was judged by a jury including acclaimed cinematographer John Bailey (Groundhog Day, As Good As It Gets), director Patricia Cardoso (Real Women Have Curves), film critic Bob Denerstein (Rocky Mountain News), and this year's Director Spotlight honoree, writer-director Jason Reitman (Thank You for Smoking). AtomFilms presented a $5,000 Studio Award, and Kodak returned with a film stock prize for Best Cinematography. In addition, the Los Angeles chapter of BAFTA (British Academy of Film and Television Arts) presented its Award for Excellence and Aspen Shortsfest awarded its first Youth Jury Prize determined by a panel of local middle and high school students.


Winners are as follows:


ANIMATED EYE AWARD ($2,500)
The Danish Poet (Torill Kove, Canada/Norway)


BEST COMEDY ($2,500)
Éramos Pocos (Borja Cobeaga, Spain)


BEST DOCUMENTARY ($2,500)
Do You Want the Elephant Music (Leslie Dektor, USA)


BEST DRAMA ($2,500)
Antonio's Breakfast (Daniel Mulloy, UK)


BEST STUDENT ($2,000)
Be Quiet (Sameh Zoabi, Palestine/France)


BEST SHORT SHORT ($1,000)
Badgered (Sharon Colman, UK)


ATOMFILMS STUDIO AWARD ($5,000 production prize)
Heavy Metal Drummer (Luke Morris & Toby MacDonald, UK)


BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY ($2,500 Kodak film stock)
Hibernation (John Williams, UK)


SPECIAL JURY RECOGNITION FOR OUTSTANDING PERFORMANCE BY A CHILD ($400 each)



Broa Ako Rasol - Son, Bawke (Directed by Hisham Zaman, Norway)



Alaà Ighbaryah - Son, Be Quiet (Directed by Sameh Zoabi, Palestine/France)



Yassine Jari - Badou, Heavy Metal Drummer (Directed by Luke Morris & Toby MacDonald, UK)



Joy Mwandla - Lucky, Lucky, (Directed by Avie Luthra, UK)



Aishwatya Atul Shidhaye - Nena, Rajkumari (Directed by Victoria Harwood, UK)



Other Awards And Prizes:


THE ELLEN AWARD – Most Original Film ($1,500)
The Danish Poet (Torill Kove, Canada/Norway)


THE ELLEN - Certificates for Distinctive Achievement ($1000 each)
For Interieur (Patrick Poubel, France)
Monster (Jennifer Kent, Australia)


YOUTH JURY PRIZE ($1,000)
Lucky (Avie Luthra, UK)


BAFTA/LA AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE
Bawke (Hisham Zaman, Norway)


BAFTA/LA HONORABLE MENTIONS
Your Dark Hair Ihsan (Tala Hadid, USA/Morocco)
For Interieur (Patrick Poubel, France)


AUDIENCE FAVORITE AWARD ($1,000 shared)
The Danish Poet (Torill Kove, Canada/Norway)
Monster (Jennifer Kent, Australia)
Smitten (Nancy Kelly, USA)


For high resolution images, please contact Jennifer Slaughter at publicity@aspenfilm.org or call 970.925.6882 x 103.


Aspen Filmfest’s upcoming summer events include summerFILMS, a film series presented in association with the Aspen Music Festival and School, which runs June 25 – August 14, and Aspen Filmfest’s Best in Show, a celebrity infused public art installation and auction, which runs June 14 – August 1. For more information, please visit www.aspenfilm.org.


Aspen Filmfest is a non-profit organization offering programs and educational opportunities year-round. Aspen Shortsfest 2006 is made possible in part by the generosity of the Danny Kaye and Sylvia Fine Kaye Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Colorado Council on the Arts, City of Aspen, Town of Snowmass Village, Target, The Aspen Times, Aspen Sojourner, Atom Films, Napapijri, Stella Artois, Kodak and Reel People: The Friends of Aspen Filmfest.

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