Short films are gaining popularity with younger generation of filmmakers

As item numbers, gory fights and super-heroes dominate commercial mainstream cinema, a few film enthusiasts feel liberated at the idea of cinema that conveys a message within a short time. Apart from being a valued category in film festivals, short films are a rage on the internet. Social networking websites like Facebook and Youtube are abuzz with such links. They are also the preferred pick for public service messages. For some filmmakers, short films are a means to expressoneself, for some they are a short cut to the big screen, and for some others they are both.

Tanikella Bharani, senior actor, writer and theatre artiste, has strong views on short films. His short films Sira and Blue Cross won awards at the Mumbai International Film Festival and Hyderabad International Film Festival. “There are over 3500 film festivals all over the world. Many short films are sold for internet rights, and in some cities there are special screens showing short films. I think short films are likely to transform into a revenue-generating industry,” he says.

(WHO???) Manojh Reddy, an aspiring filmmaker studying B.Tech, finds solace in filmmaking. He says, “I feel short films provide a platform to showcase my talent. It's also an advantage that short films can be produced on a low budget.”

Working with just basic equipment, like a Nikon D3100 camera and a Sony HDR camcorder, Manojh casts his friends and acquaintances as actors, which cuts down expenses. Manojh has won awards for best direction and best visual effects at Vasavi Talkies, a film festival by Vasavi College of Engineering, for his short film Yagnam.

“Digitalisation, easy access to internet and social networking, are the major reasons for the rise of short films. Although laidback storylines are favourites, I think the complexity and subtle emotions that can be projected in short films bring the best out of any filmmaker,” opines Abhishek Maharshi, a student of S. N. School of Communication and a budding filmmaker. He uses Canon 7D to make his movies, apart from basic editing software.

Maharshi, who has written and directed a short film called Swa and now working on a public service film, has sought out to submit his work to Ladakh International Film Festival and Hong Kong International Film Festival. He says, “It is difficult to streamline something as arbitrary as short films but I am optimistic that with the right approach, short films will soon reach out to a larger audience.”

Operating in all metros in the country, ‘Friends of Cinema' and Hyderabad-based groups like ‘Vinoothna Geetha' and ‘Yellow Studio Works', are doing all they can to popularise this medium of expression.

Short film festivals

• International Short Film Festival (Gujarat International Film Festival, Surat)

• International Short Film Festival of India (Don Bosco Institute of

Communication Arts, Chennai)

• Short Film Centre (Business platform created by International Film

Festival of India, Goa)

• Imphal International Short Film Festival (Film Forum and Action for

Social Advancement, Manipur)

• Manhattan Short Film Festival (Mumbai)

• Beta Movement (annual national inter-college short film competition by School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi)

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MetroplusJune 28, 2012