On Tuesday, Aug 15th and Wednesday, Aug 16th at the SVA Theatre in NYC, NBCUniversal hosted its 12th annual short film festival which celebrates diverse stories while finding the next generation of storytellers.
Out of 16 original short films and webisodes semi-finalists, the winners will be chosen by a panel of entertainment industry professionals and NBCUniversal executives. The finale screening and awards ceremony will take place in Los Angeles on October 18th at the Directors Guild of America.
The NBCUniversal Short Film Festival received more than 4200 submissions this year, doubling last year’s and the most in the festival’s history. The shorts and webseries were written and directed by people of ethnically diverse backgrounds, the LGBTQ community, women and people with disabilities. Famous alumni include Hasan Minhaj from “The Daily Show” and Randall Park from “Fresh Off the Boat”.
You can check out a summary of each short from the screenings below:
Akashi, written and directed by Mayumi Yoshida is about a young Japanese woman and how her grandmother’s funeral causes her to examine her own life. Through the multi-generational lives of these two women, the film looks at what it means to negotiate love.
Audible Static, written and directed by Sai Selvarajan is about a teenage boy with a speech impediment who creates a new way to communicate his feelings to his crush.
Brothers, written and directed by Emmett Lundberg is a LGBTQ web series where one of the leads tells his new girlfriend that he is transgender.
Couples: Movie Night, written by Chris Sturgeon and directed by Ryan Sulak is a comedic short where a young couple end a night-in with an epic thrill-ride to find the perfect movie.
Cul-De-Sac, written by Shawn Christensen and directed by Damon Russell is about how a married couple’s normal suburban life is jolted when they find a surprise in their toddler’s teddy bear.
Emergency, written by K.D Davila and directed by Carey Williams explores a group of young Black and Latino college students when faced in an emergency situation the pros and cons of calling the police.
Groundhog Day For A Black Man, written and directed by Cynthia Kao is about a Black man who continually relives the same day over and over again until he can survive an encounter with the police.
Joy Joy Nails, written and directed by Joey Ally is about a Korean nail salon manager who is envious when she suspects a Chinese new-hire of being romantically involved with the owner’s son only to discover that she is a victim of abuse and power.
Lost Dogs written and directed by Cullan Bruce and co-written by Chris Lee is about a woman who strike a deal with her brother to clear his illegal debt only to get involved in a deeper illegal activity.
Madaran, written and directed by Rayka Zehtabchi is about an Iranian mother who decides whether to end or spare the life of her son’s killer.
Misery Loves Company: “Pussy,” written by Sara Amini and Emily Chang and directed by Gloria Calderon Kellett, is a web series that follows the lives of two friends who are also women of color in a post-election world.
Mr. & Mrs. Kim written by Josh Aichenbaum and directed by Jaehuen Chung is about a boy of immigrant Korean parents who makes up a story of their life during his school’s career day only to discover their real story to America is something which he can be much more proud of.
Mrs. Drake, written by Kyle Warren and directed by Caitlin FitzGerald is about a single mother struggling to raise her son. She feels guilty and confused when he comes home claiming his teacher locked him in a closet.
Night Call, written by Joseph Sousa and directed by Amanda Renee Knox explores the life of a Black female cop who is forced to make a life altering decision on a routine patrol.
Pop Rox, written by Alyssa Lerner and directed by Nate Trinrud is about an Iranian-American teenager who decides to tell her best friend, that she’s in love with her.