A short way to unite people around the world

Manhattan Short film festival soon to have a showing on campus

By Jessica Tharp
On October 3, 2014

The Manhattan Short film festival will be at ASU this Saturday, Oct. 4 at 7:30 P.M. to show this year’s ten short film finalists.

The free event, which gives attendees the opportunity to vote for their favorite film and Best Actor, is to be held in the Modular Theatre of the Carr Fine Arts building.

The Manhattan Short film festival, which has been screening short films for 17 years, brings together film lovers and connoisseurs of many different ages, backgrounds and cultures in its annual, week-long schedule of exhibitions across the globe. What started as an impromptu gathering of New Yorkers watching 16 short films has grown to be a worldwide unifying event, with people everywhere attending the showings. The fact that the audience members determine the winners of Best Film and Best Actor each year make it even more engaging and fascinating as they are transformed from just a simple observer to a critic in their own right.

“I think film, theater and acting are all very exciting aspects of popular culture and I am amazed that there are young and talented people that have a passion for it around the world as well. I’m glad I get to be involved in that as a voter,” said Ethan Lankford, a theater minor who has been involved in oncampus productions.

This year there are over 300 cities across six continents that will host showings of the 2014 finalists, who are themselves quite varied with entries from the United States, the Netherlands, Australia , Mexico and more.

This Saturday’s showing at ASU is put on by West Texas Counseling and Guidance Center of San Angelo, which is co-hosting the event with ASU’s Alpha Psi Omega theatre honor society.

“The other locations that were picked to host the event in Texas were bigger cities, like San Antonio and Houston. It’s really cool to have the opportunity to bring that same experience to a smaller community,” said Janae Hatchett, President of Alpha Psi Omega.

The Alpha Psi Omega group is eager to see this year’s finalists, which will be very diverse due to the different cultural surroundings influencing each individual entrant. The entries, which are to be no more than 18 minutes in length, range greatly in subject matter and include both live action and animated forms.

Hatchett said that co-hosting the festival is a really neat way to help support the theater community as a whole and to help filmmakers worldwide. Indeed the festival does provide a unique opportunity to access the creations of independent filmmakers worldwide, and maybe even see the early work of someone whose name will someday be wellknown in the film industry.

From its early days of projecting films to a relatively small group of New Yorkers in the street to its current notoriety and prestige of being a global enterprise, the Manhattan Short film festival brings together people everywhere for a common purpose of observing the best short films and deciding who, whether they be across the globe or in our very own United States, deserves to be recognized for their vision.

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