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Stortford Film Festival success

PUBLISHED: 18:51 03 June 2011 | UPDATED: 19:29 20 February 2013

Left to right: David Fitzpatrick from Hertfordshire Community Foundation; Christopher Dane, star of Being Sold; Phil Hawkins, director of Being Sold; Colin Jolly from The Cooperative Membership; Dave Mullarkey, Festival Director; Sam Rayner, writer of Best Local Under 18s film, Retention; Jan Boruch from Janbor

Left to right: David Fitzpatrick from Hertfordshire Community Foundation; Christopher Dane, star of Being Sold; Phil Hawkins, director of Being Sold; Colin Jolly from The Cooperative Membership; Dave Mullarkey, Festival Director; Sam Rayner, writer of Best Local Under 18s film, Retention; Jan Boruch from Janbor

The 2nd Stortford Film Festival brought six days of fantastic international films and great events bringing an entirely new experience to the Stortford area.

The 2nd Stortford Film Festival ended on Thursday 26th May after six days of fantastic international films and great events bringing an entirely new experience to the Stortford area.


The festival began on Saturday 21st with a showcase of family friendly short films, followed in the evening by an opening night gala.


The opening nights films were preceded by an entertaining talk by festival jury member Eran Creevy who detailed his journey from life in Harlow and Bishops Stortford to the centre of the UKs film industry and his current work with Ridley Scott.


After the opening night film, Poor Wee Me, the movies writer/director, Simon Powell, and star, Paul Hurstfield delivered an enlightening Q&A session about the films production during which audience members could enjoy a free drink courtesy of sponsors Janbor.


Sunday 22nd brought two great showcases of short films from across the world and Monday 23rd saw the UK premiere of Spanish feature film Bucle.


Tuesday 24th featured a showcase of documentaries which succeeded in entertaining, moving and informing the audience before another UK premiere in the evening, this time of Serbian movie Motel Nana.


The festival closed on Thursday with a screening of the hilarious new comedy Being Sold. Once again the films director Phil Hawkins and star Christopher Dane answered questions from the audience after the screening, with more free drinks thanks to Janbor.


The Stortford Film Festival is an arts and culture project developed in partnership with Rhodes and with the support of The Hertfordshire Community Foundation


Almost a week of screenings was rounded off with the announcement of the winners of the festival awards, chosen by a jury of industry professionals and festival sponsors.


The category of Best Experimental Film, sponsored by the Cooperative Membership, was won by the short Italian CGI film Metachaos and announced by Co-op representative Colin Jolly. The Cooperative Membership also sponsored the Best Music Video award which was won by the video for the Daniel James track Comfortable Cage.


The film festivals primary sponsors The Hertfordshire Community Foundation also sponsored the prize for Best Animation which was won by Czech short, Swimming Pool. Best Documentary went to the gripping doc I Sold my Soul to Crystal Meth which chronicled the drugs rise in the UK.


Seattle-based festival partners IndieFlix facilitated an online competition, sponsored by local councillor Leanda Newlyn, which was won by the short horror-comedy The Furred Man which was recently screened in the UK on Channel 4.


The award for Best Short Fiction Film, sponsored by local recycling business Janbor, was won by Swedish film Om Fem r. Janbor also sponsored the prize for the runner-up in the category of Best Local Under-18 which was awarded to Stortford teenagers Xanthe Young and Katie Bray for their tongue-in-cheek film F**k My Life (FML).


The winner of Best Local Under-18 film went to a group of Harlow college students for the short horror, Retention. The prize for this award was sponsored by and dedicated to the memory of local councillor Duncan Peek who sadly died not long after donating to the festival from his locality budget. The Under 18s award was voted for online by local people. The final award for Best Feature Film, sponsored by The Nigel Copping Fund, was won by the stirring Serbian drama Motel Nana.


Each of the awards for best film earned the filmmakers a 100 prize as well as the Stortford Film Festival award trophy.


The fantastic audience response to this years selection of films bodes well for the future of the Stortford Film Festival as a major cultural experience for the region. Thanks to the generosity of the festival sponsors and the support of local people this has the opportunity to grow into a regular event that can attract interest from both filmmakers and film fans from far and wide!


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