By: Elizabeth Steele
In a city where the only thing most anyone involved in the entertainment business wants is to be recognized for their cinematic work, where actors are a dime a dozen and everyone has "the best script," festivals are being created to bring together people with common goals and desires.Los Angeles is known for its cinematic achievements in Hollywood. However, more people are looking towards a lesser known field of cinema, the independent films, the labors of love. Independent Films in their purest form are usually low-budget (meaning at least half the cost of Hollywood films) and directed in small studios. More recently many large companies such as Fox Searchlight and Sony Pictures Classics are producing low-budget films to appease the growing desire for more artistic, human interest movies. Directors can keep their creative vision though out filming to keep their intent from being tampered with by producers. Not only are independent filmmakers finding a place to showcase their talents, short films are also gaining worldwide attention.In a city of high budget film making, two friends came together to help people showcase their passion, an otherwise rarely noticed passion, short independent films. Daniel Sol and Theo Dumont met years ago and came up with the idea of an independent short film festival based on their own passions, the HollyShorts Short Film Festival. The festival is a place where people from all over the world, in all stages in life can show their work, but especially students who otherwise have no place to be recognized. "The initial idea was that this would be a student centered festival." Sol said. "We want to add and entice more students to join. This year is focusing more on student films."Knowing that untapped talent needed a place to be seen, Sol knew it would gain appreciation, and attention, he said. In its third year the festival is already gaining some star power. Adrian Grenier, who plays Vincent Grenier on the HBO series Entourage, will use the Third Annual HollyShorts Festival for the Hollywood premier of his film "Euthanasia."The idea for a short film festival sprouted from Sol and Dumont's passion for film. "The positive thing is we are hands on with what we are doing. I love doing this. Everyone involved enjoys it. We care about it." Sol said. They wanted to give the festival a shot. Keep things simple. And they would see where it went from there, Sol said.The last two festivals showcased some of the world's best 30 minuet and under short films to sold-out crowds. Sol wants the festival to bring people with common goals together. According to Sol, he and Dumont strive to "advance the careers of filmmakers globally and showcase great short film projects." This year's festival is scheduled Aug. 10-12. Regular deadline for submissions into the film festival is April 27. The late deadline is May 25. Students get $5 off any submission. All shorts must be under 30 minuets. Categories include Short Live Action. Short Animation, Short Documentary, and Student Short. To submit to the HollyShorts Short Film Festival please go to www.withourabox.com/login/4655. Or for more information about the festival go to www.hollyshorts.com. Along with an annual festival Sol and Dumont also PRESENT monthly screenings of short films. At the end of the month, usually on Thursdays, the Cinespace Digital Superclub in Hollywood brings together an upscale restaurant and bar and a movie screening room. During a typical night five or six short films are shown during September to June months, leaving July and August dedicated to preparing for the film festival. It is an open submission showcase.
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