The time has finally come! The Worldwide Short Film Festival runs this week starting tomorrow, Tuesday June 10/08. I'm stunned that it was 1 year ago that I was there seeing Elif Isikozlu's beautiful and haunting BLUE. How quickly time passes, but that can only mean it's time to see more great (short) film! The calibre of the festival is high again this year which should be no surprize considering that it is one of the three festivals in Canada where the award winning shorts become eligible for even more awards: Genies and Academy Awards (Best Live-Action Short and Best Animated Short). With 268 films from 31 countries it sure is a festival to be reckoned with.
The festival begins with the Opening Night Gala screening is Awards Winners from Around the World. This program includes the sweet short Peter and Ben (see my thoughts here) and five other award winning shorts. It's destined to be a fantastic night!
There are 12 Official Selections programs which come together in subject matter such as A Brief History of Our Time, This Sporting Life and Watch What You Eat. These programs feature films from Canada and the World and include selections from varying formats such as animated, documentary, experimental and fiction.
If you are feeling patriotic, check out the CFC 20th Anniversary program which features exclusively Canadian shorts created as part of the Short Dramatic Film Program in 2007. Feeling like you want to travel, yet not leave Toronto? Check out these international selections: Thai Spotlight, The Neu Europe and the film school spotlight on Buenos Aires Universidad del Cine.
If you are all about animation, the choice is simple. Check out the Japanese animation spotlight Genius Party double bill featuring the first and second anthology by STUDIO 4°C. The news is that director Shinichiro Watanabe (Cowboy Bebop, Samurai Champloo) will be at the festival for the Canadian premiere of his film Baby Blue and also will be interviewed as part of the festival's symposium series: STUDIO4ºC – Animation in Translation.
Those who like there films more than a little crazy and out there, check out the Midnight Mania screenings Creepy and Freaky. But it doesn't stop there! Keep up the momentum with program Sci-Fi Out There for all of us space cadets, alien seekers and those fascinated with the beyond.
With all of theses choices, the most challenging thing about the festival will be to decide what to see. Who wouldn't want to see it all?.
For more information, check out the Worldwide Short Film Festival website, Program Descriptions, Film Schedule, Symposium Details, Location Information, Box Office Information or Purchase Tickets online.
The Worldwide Short Film Festival runs from June 10-15/08 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.