Wrap Up: The 2015 Nitehawk Shorts Festival

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For the third year Nitehawk has presented its annual NITEHAWK SHORTS FESTIVAL featuring short films under twenty minutes and, as in previous years, we’ve been proud to host so many extremely talented (and nice) filmmakers!

It was our largest Festival to date with seven screenings featuring sixty-three shorts over six days. The program expanded in 2015 to include more of our Signature Series programming with Music Driven presented a music video night while Art Seen returned to screening with six contemporary artists and filmmakers. The Iron Mule Comedy Shorts also joined our regular programming of an Official Opening Nite, Midnite, and weekend matinee Day One and Day Two screenings. We also welcomed nearly 700 people to the Festival this year which is really the purpose of this event – introduce audiences to new filmmakers and films!

OPENING NIGHT

There is something magical about this festival where filmmakers from New York and beyond come together for a few days not only to present their work but to have conversations with one another and with us. Even though the shorts we screen are made between 2013-2015, the age and experience levels of the filmmakers is greatly varied across the programming where audiences saw student films by Marina Loducca and Christopher Cole as well as Reinaldo Marcus Green (fresh from the London Film Festival) and Academy Award nominee Zachary Heinzerling.

We also received some pretty amazing write-ups about the Nitehawk Shorts Festival too. On the Opening Nite screening, Indiewire wrote:

“Short films are rarely consumed by the general public these days, but last night at the Nitehawk Cinema in Brooklyn, a full house reaffirmed the unique ability of short films to pack a punch in a succinct running time. The third annual Nitehawk Shorts Festival’s opening night boasted an eclectic mix of nine short films, each under 20 minutes, that demonstrate how short filmmaking is a medium unto itself and is truly its own beast.”

And on our Art Seen screening, Brooklyn Magazine wrote:

“For the third year, Nitehawk Senior Film Programmer Caryn Coleman has given us a great gift: the Nitehawk Shorts Festival.Why is a short film festival so awesome, you ask? Simple. Because, like any truly great gift, it will surprise you; it will surprise you in the way that something surprises you because it—the short film—isn’t something you think very much about, before realizing that it could be so, so good. And with this festival, Nitehawk and Coleman have not only brought together a collection of some of the best new shorts, but also their makers, so that you may ask them questions about how they did it, and then drink with them afterwards. And it will surprise you because, like the coolest kid in school—the deep, down, for real cool.”

MIDNITE SCREENING & FILMMAKER GATHERING

Our amazing sponsors continue to elevate the Nitehawk Shorts Festival every year too. Committed to helping filmmakers gain access to the tools they need to elevate their craft, our prize sponsors are post-production services by Heard City and Nice Shoes (who also made our brand spanking new snipe). This year, for the first time, the Festival winner was awarded to a filmmaker in our Midnite screening: Nathan Hughes-Berry’s The Substitute (so, so good). Our runner up is Theodore Collatos for his short Truth With Wine (Fun fact: Teddy’s films have screened all three years). But even though those are works that won the top prizes, every film screened was truly more than worthy!

DAY TWO & CLOSING PARTY

Lastly, without the support of the filmmakers and the audience, the Nitehawk Shorts Festival wouldn’t be the unique event that it is. And for that, everyone at Nitehawk thanks you! Stay tuned for what we’ll have in store for 2016 where we’ll continue to present new, exciting, and unexpected short films.

-Caryn Coleman (Senior Film Programmer/Special Projects, Nitehawk Cinema)