It’s the 25th anniversary of Tropfest this year, but the finalist slate for the world’s biggest short film festival is notable for another reason: half the films are the product of female-led creative teams, a first in Tropfest’s history.
16 finalists were selected from hundreds of entries, with the shorts encompassing a vast range of genres and subjects. John Polson, the festival founder, said, “The calibre of films submitted this year was outstanding. It was extremely difficult to choose our finalists from such a strong group. It’s wonderful to see the entrants this year reflecting a vast range of diversity and gender. Over the past 12 months, we’ve made a major effort to attract women to enter Tropfest – with help from people like Lucy Liu and producer Bruna Papandrea – so it’s incredibly exciting to see that effort pay off. We have 16 very unique films to premiere to tens of thousands of Tropfest fans at our wonderful new home in Parramatta.”
One of the finalists, filmmaker and actor, Holly Hargreaves, is especially excited to have made the grade, seeing as her entry, Diary of a YouTuber, was a spur-of-the-moment, last minute decision.
“I wasn’t going to make a short for Tropfest this year,” she told us. “But on the day of the deadline I thought, ‘I have to make something’. I only had an hour before I had to go to my day job so I shot it very fast. I shot it on my iPhone and I limited myself to one take per scene and ended up getting it in an hour. I then edited it fast- within 45 minutes – and sent it off. I didn’t think I was going to get in but I’m very excited I did.”
And the finalists are…
- Accomplice by Michael Noonan
- Another Olga by Cecilia Rumore
- Beekeepers, The by James Dewhirst-Prineas
- Birth, The by Sarah Hatherley
- Can’t I Sh#t In Peace? By Julia Morris
- Diary of a Youtuber by Holly Hargreaves
- Everyting Criss by Olly Sindle
- Going Vego by Christopher Burke, Mikey Owen, Hannah Bath
- Love, Steve by Alex Roberts
- Meat and Potatoes by Arielle Thomas, Ellenor Argyropoulos
- Mother Situation, The by Matt Day
- Mutonia Burnout by Eugene E Nrg
- Passenger by Catherine Mack
- Talc by Jefferson Grainger
- Wall, The by Tristan Klein
- Wibble Wobble by Daphne Do
Tropfest takes place at Parramatta Park on Saturday, February 11. For more info, hit the official site.