Indy Film Fest

7Aug/110

I had a cooler weekend than you.

No, not me - it was the 40 teams who banded together to make a movie in 48 hours. They had an awesome weekend with the 48 Hour Film Project, delightfully summed up in the anthem "I Had a Cooler Weekend Than You."

What these groups went through - from writing to shooting to editing and mixing, plus working in a specific character, prop and line of dialogue - in the span of just two days was on display at the IMA Saturday night as all 40 films screened to friends and fans alike. I was lucky enough to serve on the jury, and while not every film was award-worthy, every team clearly had a blast along the way.

Every film had to manage to work an orange (yes, the fruit) into the shot; had to have someone say the line "I would prefer not to..."; and had to make room for a character named Jonathan (or Jolene) Taylor, a lawyer. What's more, each group pulled a genre at the start of the weekend - whatever they created had to be a western, a dark comedy, a thriller or even a musical, among other categories. There was a found-footage foray into a haunted mansion, an awkward dinner between a divorce lawyer and her two boyfriends, and a spot-on superhero spoof complete with a secret lair hidden behind a bookshelf door.

The prospect of watching 40 films in quick succession was daunting as we kicked off at 5 o'clock on a Saturday evening. But by the time the last film rolled at 11:30 at night, I found myself invigorated. Sure, the quality wasn't always pitch-perfect, and a couple films looked like they'd been shot on a cell phone. But the passion of these crews, the fun they all had - it was infectious! And several films shined above the rest for their writing, cinematography, acting and music. The ability to pull all those elements together in such a short period of time - and to do it well - is a talent, to be sure.

The 48 Hour Film Project is a world-wide event; over the course of the year, projects run in cities all over America and abroad. The winners will screen with winners from every city and even has the chance to screen at Cannes in 2012!

To see all that talent - all that LOCAL talent - concentrated on a single project for one moment in time...it's why we do this. It's why Big Car produces the event, why the Indy Film Fest, iMoca and The Film Yap support it. Because all that potential exists out there, and deserves its moment on the big screen. Congrats to all who participated, and congrats to the winners!

Want to see the best of this year's Indianapolis 48HFP? I found one of the Best Film runners up online here. But for all of them, mark your calendar for August 25, when all award winners (and some Judge's Picks!) will screen at Big Car. Deets to follow!

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