Synopsis: 1. Hippy Dippy Airstream / Timothy Webb / USA / Experimental / 3 minutes
“Traveling along Route 66, past and present.”
2. Artboy / Eli Canter / USA / Student / 14 minutes
“On Halloween night, a shy high school artist navigates social validation and the bittersweet lines between friendship and heartbreak.”
3. The Steak / Kiarash Dadgar Mohebi / Iran / Debut / 8 minutes
“A birthday ceremony preparation gets upside down as something horrible takes place.”
4. The Lie / Alana Stark / USA / Debut / 14 minutes
“He has everything, including a drug addiction.”
5. The Winner / Ali Keyvan / Iran / Foreign Language / 15 minutes
“Honesty wins the day when there is a bike mix-up.”
6. The Mall Man / Dustin Morrow / USA / Comedy / 8 minutes
““Death of a Salesman” goes to the mall in this darkly comic satire of American consumerism and the fading status of shopping malls in contemporary society.”
7. Spitball / Jim Menza / USA / Comedy / 16 minutes
“Two writers struggle to come up with the perfect script for a short film.”
8. Margarinally Detained / Jeff Griggs / USA / Comedy / 8 minutes
“Things get weird in the Wisconsin forest.”
9. Squirrel Meets Boris / Mark Goshorn Jones / USA / Drama / 10 minutes
“It’s a red letter day when a gay teenager discovers that the new Baptist Preacher has a secret life.”
1. HIPPY DIPPY AIRSTREAM / “Traveling along Route 66 in a vintage airstream, listening to the Blues, and spending time in Kingman, Arizona (past and present).”
2. ARTBOY / “Artboy was my Boston University senior thesis film. I wanted to create a film where the main character dealt with his emotional life through drawing and imagination, but I also wanted to include 2D animated sequences that would bring his internal world to life. I hope I captured the coming of age emotions of how everything feels like such a big deal and the bittersweet lines of friendship and heartbreak.”
3. THE STEAK / “Introducing a formalistic approach, this short film delves into the dramatic transformation that can occur within mere minutes. Through the skillful use of a continuous 360-degree tilt, the narrative employs a metaphorical technique that masterfully juxtaposes the beginning and the ending, creating a remarkable disparity of outcomes. As a filmmaker, I find immense fascination in exploring stories centered around the concept of war. It is my belief that war issues hold a universal quality, allowing viewers to comprehend the inherent bitterness they entail. By choosing to eliminate dialogue entirely, this film invites the audience to interpret the story through the characters’ actions and visual symbolism, thus transcending cultural or geographic boundaries. Additionally, this film serves as the inaugural installment of a compelling trilogy exploring war narratives through a formalistic lens. Currently, I am passionately crafting the second piece of this series, driven by a desire to further explore the depth and complexity of these themes.”
4. THE LIE / “Country Club looks, a million dollar smile, and a million dollar bank account. He has everything, including a drug addiction. He says he’s in recovery but his habit knows the truth. What will it take for him to realize it’s just a lie?”
5. THE WINNER / “Vahid’s new bike which his dad bought for him so he could participate in a race is resembling his friend’s bike that has been recently stolen…..”
6 THE MALL MAN / “In “The Mall Man”, a shopping mall manager undertakes a marathon session of wheeling-and-dealing in a last-ditch effort to bring life back to his failing mall. Shopping malls are facing declining sales, increased competition from online retailers, and changing consumer habits. This is leading to increased vacancies, plummeting property values, and even closure for many malls. To address these challenges, some malls are repositioning themselves as mixed-use developments, incorporating residential, office, and entertainment space. Others are focusing on enhancing the experience of visiting the mall by offering unique and local retailers, restaurants, and public services like libraries, health care and community college classes. Despite these efforts, the future of many struggling shopping malls is uncertain.”
7. SPITBALL / “Two writers struggle to come up with the perfect script for a short film.”
8. MARGARINALLY DETAINED / “Marginally Detained is a satiric film that explores the true purpose behind rules and laws. Are laws created with our best interest in mind, or are they passed simply because someone with deep pockets is sponsoring the legislation?
I wrote this script after visiting Ireland and discovering that an entire Irish industry was being blacklisted by the state of Wisconsin. I hope this film makes people laugh, and hope people think it’s funny, but I also hope it makes people question the origin of rules and laws in our country.
It’s healthy to always ask “why?””
9. SQUIRREL MEETS BORIS / “During the pandemic, I started to watch movies and TV shows that I felt I should have already seen, but never got around to it. One such show was late 1960’s British show “The Prisoner” created by Patrick McGoohan. In one particular episode, “Many Happy Returns” there is no dialogue for the first 15 minutes and the main character doesn’t speak for the first 22 minutes.
In this short film, the dialogue is sparse; in fact most of the words in the film are spoken by the preacher at the beginning and at the end of the movie. When the preacher does speak, the gay teenager sitting in the congregation isn’t sure who the preacher is talking to and if he really means what he’s saying.”
1. HIPPY DIPPY AIRSTREAM / none provided
2. ARTBOY / “Eli Canter is a New York-based writer/director originally from Larchmont, NY. Eli seeks to entertain and touch audiences with clever plots, striking visuals, and a twist of humor. Eli’s work has screened at the Woodstock Film Festival, the Newport Beach Film Festival, the Nashville Film Festival, and many other festivals across the country.
He graduated from Boston University in 2023 with a BS in Film & Television and is currently working in post-production at Public Record in Brooklyn, NY. His filmmaking process is inspired by his extensive background in the visual arts, including graphic design, illustration, drawing, and painting.”
3. THE STEAK / “Kiarash Dadgar, b. 1994, a film and theatre artist from Iran. He received his M.A. in Dramatic Literature from the Soore Art University of Tehran and worked on several projects in Iranian short films, series and theatre productions. He also worked as a producer in some short films that one of them “Jouissance” was premiered at BUSAN International Film Festival (2022). He directed his first short film “Steak” in 2023 and is waiting for his film’s world premiere.”
4. THE LIE / none provided
5. THE WINNER / “Born in 1990, graduated in cinema directing.”
6. THE MALL MAN / “Dustin Morrow is an Emmy-winning filmmaker, bestselling author, screenwriter and educator. He is a tenured Professor in the School of Film at Portland State University in Portland, Oregon, where he teaches courses in digital cinema production and film studies. He previously taught at Temple University, Monmouth College and the University of Iowa. Before re-entering academia, Morrow was an editor and director of short-form projects and series television in Los Angeles. Prof. Morrow has written books, exhibited photography, produced and hosted a web series, directed a dramatic narrative podcast, programmed film festivals, directed study abroad programs, given a TED Talk, and is an in-demand speaker at festivals and conferences in both the U.S. and abroad. Learn more about his work at www.dustinmorrow.com.”
7. SPITBALL / “Jim Menza is a director, writer, producer, editor and actor who has spent most of his adult life in the entertainment industry. After spending two years on a successful sitcom, he set out on a forty-six State tour as the on-air host and writer of the ABC FAMILY CHANNEL’S TV show; THE SUMMER DRIVE-IN THEATRE. His films include DUSTING CLIFF SEVEN, which he also wrote, and NICE GUYS… which he wrote, produced and starred in. Jim wrote directed, produced and edited the feature films PATIENT – official selection of the Angel Citi Film Festival, FOOLISH THE WISE – official selection of The California Independent Films Festival, BLOOD, BAGGED – distributed by Fenix Films, THE LIST – Feature Film Winner of the Key West Independent Film Festival, SIGNED IN BLOOD – official selection of the Dances With Films Film Festival, SLIGHT OF LIFE – official selection of the DeReel Australian International Film Festival, EXECUTION – winner of the Haunted Horror International Film Festival, RID, and BLOODY WINGS, winner Best Guerrilla Feature The Temecula Independent Film Festival, official selection MAC Brazilian Film Festival 2015. His NOVELS include CLIPPED, LOONIES and DAREDEVIL the man without fear.”
8. MARGARINALLY DETAINED / “Jeff Griggs is the author of Guru; My Days With Del Close. He is an MFA Film and TV Directing Student at DePaul University. Jeff also is a Director and Performer with the Second City of Chicago.”
9. SQUIRREL MEETS BORIS / “”Squirrel Meets Boris” is Mark Jones’s 8th short film. “I love the challenge of telling a complete story in a short amount of time” says Jones.
Jones has written and directed two feature films, “Fraternity Massacre at Hell Island” and “Tennessee Queer” both can be found on streaming platforms.
Mark and his husband were married in 2019 and live in Memphis where they are involved in the LGBTQ community and fans of the Memphis Grizzlies.”