After a jam-packed day of screenings, filmmaker Q&A's, industry guests, and an awards party that raged until the small hours, the first BIFA-qualifying edition of Exit 6 Film Festival comes to an end.
We were thrilled to welcome so many filmmakers and film-lovers to Exit 6 Film Festival 2023, celebrating 49 incredible short films and handing out a selection of awards to our very deserving winners.
And the winners are...
BEST FILM - THE DATE
Directed by Amy Hodge, our Best Film winner was selected by guest judge James Callis who said of the film:
I chose The Date for a number of reasons. I liked the simplicity of the telling of the story. And this cinema verité style of film making, along with great performances - lend to making a powerful short film. Subtle but hard hitting.
The young cast perform the roles in a totally natural and at the same time mature, understated fashion. It’s all very real. And at times uncomfortably so.
A moment in time - the brink of adolescence, explored with nuance amidst familiar suburban landscapes, the park, the roller disco. The whole piece flowed very naturally. The image of the two girls on the swings at the end, one enjoying being a kid and the other - mentally somewhere else... Great Script. Great Direction/ Production. Bravo!
BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY - O, GLORY!
Shot by Csaba Kondor, our Best Cinematography winner was selected by guest judge Nanu Segal who said:
O, GLORY! uses cinematography to great dramatic effect, working within the creative remit of its unique cinematic universe. I felt the photography enhanced the story telling to great effect. This for me is the essence of great cinematography.
BEST EDITING - BOY IN THE BACK SEAT
Edited by writer-director Scott Pickup, our Best Editing winner was selected by guest judge Mark Towns who said:
Judging best editing is a very tricky job at the best of times, and with this years high standard of films and also wide ranging of genres it was harder still. However the winner used style, rhythm and pace to cut an intense and affecting film.
BEST PERFORMANCE - FIVE WEEKS
Esther Smith won the award for Best Performance, selected by our guest judge Shelley Conn who said:
With very little dialogue, Esther Smith held this moving film singlehandedly. Every frame was an opportunity to embody the characters story and she did this with a compelling honesty. She committed to those intense close ups and I felt she wasted nothing as an actor to offer a stunning portrayal.
Special mention also went to Jonny Phillips for his performance in Spinning:
Johnny Phillips definitely deserves an honorable mention for his beautiful depiction of character with a deep sense of story in the brilliant, Spinning. He showed restraint and conviction in the face of what could easily have become ridiculous.
BEST SCRIPT - I HAVE HEARD YOU CALLING IN THE NIGHT
Written by Will Bishop and Colm Gleeson, our Best Script winner was selected by guest judge Samantha Horley who said:
I selected I Have Heard You Calling in The Night as the winner of Best Screenplay because the setup was very smart but smartly simple at the same time, it had twists and turns - and I love being surprised in a short - I cared for both characters, and the dialogue was humming.
Special mention also went to The Ceiling:
The Ceiling gets a special mention as it was genuinely and horribly affecting, felt astonishingly real, in the setup as well as the manipulation and self-doubt throughout in the dialogue and characters, and the ending was...ooof. Great writing, people should see this.
AUDIENCE CHOICE - SPOOR
The Audience Choice award, as voted for online and in-person, went to Spoor directed by Statten Roeg & Sunita Sollar.
And that concludes the award winners for Exit 6 Film Festival 2023! Huge thanks to all our special guest judges for their time and consideration, we know how much it means to have work recognised by industry peers.
We hope to see you all in 2024!
Submissions for Exit 6 Film Festival 2024 will open on Monday 2nd October 2023.