Palm Springs Shortfest Winners Unveiled

Aaron Purkey
Palm Springs

Jon-Erik Mack's 'Facing Mecca' claimed the best of the festival award.

Jon-Erik Mack’s Facing Mecca, in which a Syrian refugee faces the Swiss bureaucracy, claimed the best of festival award, the top jury prize, at the 2017 Palm Springs International ShortFest, which concludes June 2. The film was also honored as best student live-action short over 15 minutes.

The fest, which screened 338 short films and presented awards in 21 categories, gave its Grand Jury Award to Franck Dion’s The Head Vanishes, which was also named best animated short.

Audience awards went to Toma Waszarow’s Red Light, named best live action short; Nicholas Arioli’s Coin Operated, best animation short, Mari Bake Riise’s Kayayo, best documentary short; and Sean Meehan’s Lost Face, which won the Shortfest online audience award prize.

The complete list of winners follows:

JURY AWARDS

Jury Awards and awards in the non-student and student competition categories were selected by ShortFest jury members David Ansen (film critic/PSIFF Lead Programmer), Lindsey Bahr (Associated Press), Kate Bosworth (actress/producer), Ian Durkin (Vimeo), Sam Lansky (Time Magazine) and Heidi Zwicker (Sundance).

BEST OF FESTIVAL AWARD

Facing Mecca (Switzerland), Jan-Eric Mack

GRAND JURY AWARD

The Head Vanishes (France/Canada), Franck Dion

PANAVISION BEST NORTH AMERICAN SHORT

Dekalb Elementary (USA), Reed Van Dyk

 

NON-STUDENT COMPETITION AWARDS

All first-place winners in the non-student categories received a cash award of $2,000 and may be eligible to submit their film to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for Oscar consideration.

BEST ANIMATED SHORT

The Head Vanishes (France/Canada), Franck Dion

BEST LIVE ACTION SHORT OVER 15 MINUTES

Retouch (Iran), Kaveh Mazaheri

BEST LIVE ACTION SHORT 15 MINUTES AND UNDER

Great Choice (USA), Robin Comisar

BEST DOCUMENTARY SHORT

Edith + Eddie (USA), Laura Checkoway

 

STUDENT COMPETITION AWARDS

FUTURE FILMMAKER AWARD

Where You Found Refuge (France), Guillaume Legrand

Special Mention: Fry Day (USA), Laura Moss

BEST STUDENT ANIMATION

Sog (Germany), Jonatan Schwenk

BEST STUDENT LIVE ACTION SHORT OVER 15 MINUTES

Facing Mecca (Switzerland), Jan-Eric Mack

BEST STUDENT LIVE ACTION SHORT 15 MINUTES AND UNDER

Iron Hands (USA/China), Johnson Cheng

BEST STUDENT DOCUMENTARY SHORT

Searching for Wives (Singapore), Zuki Juno Tobgye

Special Jury Mention: I Made You, I Kill You (Romania/France), Alexandru Petru Badelita

 

AUDIENCE AWARDS

BEST LIVE ACTION SHORT

Red Light (Bulgaria/Croatia), Toma Waszarow

BEST ANIMATION SHORT

Coin Operated(USA), Nicholas Arioli

BEST DOCUMENTARY SHORT

Kayayo (Norway), Mari Bakke Riise

SHORTFEST ONLINE AUDIENCE AWARD

Lost Face (Australia/Canada), Sean Meehan

 

ADDITIONAL PRIZES

ALEXIS AWARD FOR BEST EMERGING STUDENT FILMMAKER

Chebet (Kenya/USA), Tony Koros

HP BRIDGING THE BORDERS AWARD PRESENTED BY CINEMA WITHOUT BORDERS

Pantheon (France), Ange-Regis Hounkpatin

YOUTH JURY AWARD

Everybody Else Is Taken (New Zealand), Jessica Grace Smith

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