35th Clermont-Ferrand International Short Film Festival comes to a close
by Laurence Boyce
- Biggest dedicated short film festival in the world announces award winners and celebrates a healthy market
This year’s Clermont-Ferrand International Short Film Festival, which ran from February 1-9, came to a close on Saturday night with films from Spain and Mexico winning some of the festival’s bigger awards. The Grand Prix for the International Competition went to Izabel Acevedo’s Mexican film To Put Together A Helicopter (Para armar un Helicóptero), a raw and intense film about people who must survive in a rain-sodden Mexico City. Over in Clermont’s renowned Lab section – dedicated to more eclectic and experimental fare – the Grand Prix was snapped up by Spanish short A Story For The Modlins. Sergio Oskman’s acclaimed film is a documentary that follows Elmer Modlin, a jobbing actor who appeared in Rosemary’s Baby and then disappeared for 30 years. Oskman creatively recreates Modlin’s life through photographs and memorabilia found in the actor’s flat and the combination of pathos and technical wizardry also saw the film win the Lab’s Audience Award. The National Competition winner was Xavier Legrand’s Avant que de tout perdre, which also won an Audience Award and the Young Jury Prize.
On the industry side of the festival Clermont cemented its reputation as the most important short film market in the world after a recession hit few years. Full to capacity – with the festival having to turn down late requests – 2013 saw the return of the UK stand to the Clermont Market after a two year absence with the British Council, Creative England and numerous UK Short Film Festivals in attendance. Lithuania also had a stand for the first time alongside regular Clermont attendees from Spain, Greece and – of course - France. Outside of Europe, UniJapan also made their presence felt at the festival alongside distributors from the likes of Latin America, Iran, Canada and Qatar.
Next year’s festival will be held from January 31-February 8.