Weekend of Short Films and Documentaries
The second edition of the AUBG Short Film Fest took place on November 23-25 in the Andrey Delchev Auditorium. During the opening, organizers of this year’s AUBG Short Film Festival ‘Be Brave to Create‘ presented the program for the four-day event and explained the goal of the “48 hours Documentary Challenge” which also started at midnight on Friday, November 23.
During the weekend, this year’s edition of the AUBG Short Film Fest screened films from The European Independent Film Festival (ECU), Utica Ithaca Film Festival, South Western University (SWU), SWAN Art Academy, University Of Wales, Newport Film School, Svannah College of Art and Design (SCAD), AUBG and London Film Academy graduate Ivailo Minov, Natfiz, and short films produced by AUBG students, recently screened at Sofia Independent Film Fest.
“We have done most of the organizing through facebook, gmail and skype,” said Alexander Acosta Osorio, JMC alumnus, founder and organizer of the first AUBG Short Film Fest. Despite the efforts that the team had put in promoting the event, the festival was poorly attended. “What affected the attendance of the fest was the inconvenient time because it is very very close to the end of the finals week and the end of the semester. Also there are a lot of other things happening simultaneously like rehearsals, plays etc.,” explained Dumitrita Pacicovschi, one of the main organizers of the Short Film Fest this year.
The first night of the AUBG Short Film Festival promised a lecture by the Bulgarian director Georgi Tenev. However, the guest had been involved in a project that required his immediate attention and did not confirm his presence. The organizers had to find a back-up lecturer and invited Tsanko Vasilev – a Bulgarian filmmaker and producer. Unfortunately, he did not attend the Festival either. “There was a communication problem, the guy that we invited at the last moment and graciously accepted our invitation did not receive our message with the confirmation of the time and place,” Pacicovschi clarified.
A part of the festival this year is the “48 Hours Documentary Challenge” organized by the AUBG Documentary club. The two events were combined because they ” (…) wanted to make the festival more dynamic and give people something fun to do,” Pacicovschi explained. During the opening night Professor Melody Gilbert, who is one of the creators of the Challenge and adviser to the film festival, shared some of her experience as a filmmaker and a participant in the International Documentary Challenge. During her presentation several short documentaries from this year’s five day challenge were also screened.
According to Gilbert, AUBG 48 hours challenge is a good start for students to practice their film-making skills and gain a lot of valuable experience. In her opinion, the challenge is a good preparation for those who would like to participate in the next Documentary Challenge next spring.
One of the main organizers of the festival, Igor Myakotin, encouraged students and everyone else who love documentary films to participate in the documentary challenges because it is an opportunity to create something long-lasting, beautiful, and significant.
This year’s edition of the AUBG Short Film Fest came out with a new identity. After extensive brainstorming, the PR team among the organizers came up with the idea to use the griffon as a symbol of the festival. “We thought that for the future festival editions the griffin is the perfect identity for us at AUBG and plus it shows veracity to people from outside. We also choose a tag line for this year which is “Be Brave to Create”, as most of the shorts in the festival were student shorts and the “48 Hours Challenge” took place – we thought the tag line was appropriate and inspiring,” Pacicovschi shared.
According to the founder of the AUBG Short Film Fest Alexander Acosta Osorio, there is a “wave of interest” in film-making in AUBG and events such as the film fest will help encourage all who are interested in being involved in film-making or enjoying film. In his opinion, “AUBG has what it takes to have a minor in film-making. It is up to the students now to decide whether they would like to have such minor or not.”
The fest this year lasts for four days and will conclude Today (Monday, November 26) with the screening of Miss AUBG documentary which was shot during spring 2012 by AUBG students for Gilbert’s Documentary Film-making class and screened at AUBG Documentary Movie Club.
“Of course I think it’s a fantastic idea to expose students to short films made by other students! It helps AUBG students see what other student filmmakers from around the world are up to,” Gilbert said. Her hope is that this festival would encourage AUBG students to continue with their film-making endeavours. “AUBG students can be proud of the work that our JMC students are doing.”