More than 800 people enjoyed some of the best short films from around the world under the stars in the most amazing film festival location on the planet at the 2018 Port Shorts Film Festival held in Rex Smeal Park last Friday and Saturday night.
Fifty-two awesome short films were showcased over the two nights, with the Port Shorts Young Filmmakers Awards and the Port Shorts Music Video Awards on Friday night and the new Port Shorts Drone Awards, Port Shorts Local Filmmaker Awards and Port Shorts Open Filmmaker Awards finalist films screening to a record audience of more than 600 film enthusiasts on Saturday night.
The Port Shorts Masterclass Series workshops featuring industry experts including cinematographer and broadcast specialist Cam McGrath, Powderfinger drummer and broadcaster Jon Coghill, screenwriter Kier Shorey, producer Jim Gorman, writer/director Sio Tusa, actor Mary Eggleston, Australian Teachers of Media’s Aimee Gust, the leaders in drone technology XM2 and Festival Ambassadors Stephen Curry and Matt Hearn also attracted more than 100 mostly local filmmakers given access to some of the best minds in the entertainment industry.
Port Shorts Film Festival Director Alison George said the leap of faith to the new venue and the significant investment in the state-of-the-art LED screen had paid huge dividends for organisers.
‘’There is no better location in the world for a film festival than Rex Smeal Park with the Coral Sea and the Daintree Rainforest, the palm trees and even a gigantic full moon as our backdrop,’’ Ali said.
‘’We knew the whole program across all categories featured exceptional films so to be able to share that experience with so many people was a very rewarding experience for the organisers who volunteer a huge amount each year to put the event on.
‘’It was also extremely satisfying to see how much our Masterclass Series participants got out of the workshops, a lot of effort goes in to providing local filmmakers with access to these industry experts so to see that level of engagement is hugely rewarding.’’
Ali said the dates for next year’s festival would be announced soon and thanked everyone who participated in this year’s festival.
‘’Hats off to all the finalist filmmakers, they should all be very proud of what they achieved, and congratulations to our winners, they were all very deserving,’’ Ali said.
‘’But also a huge thanks to our many sponsors, volunteers, suppliers and of course the audience who made the event the success it was on every level with record entries and attendance, we obviously can’t put on a festival without you.
‘’We won’t be changing too much for 2019 but will be out to make it even better and look forward to sharing some exciting festival news to help us get there in the coming months.’’
WINNERS – FRIDAY NIGHT
Port Shorts Young Filmmaker Awards winner – Jamisyn Chapman Image en Mouvement
Port Shorts Music Video Awards winner – William A. Bleakley The End
Shout Out winner – Vascoe Gonsalves Day Dream
WINNERS – SATURDAY NIGHT
Port Shorts Open Filmmaker Awards winner – Damian McLindon The Last Time I Saw You
Port Shorts Local Filmmaker Awards winner – Rob Parry Baffin Island
Port Shorts Jury Prize winner – Ren Thackham Round Trip
Audience Choice winner – Jake Girgenti Sausage Roll