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LAST DAY To Vote!! Round 1 Of The Shadow and Act Filmmaker Digital Showcase Continues!

by Tambay A. Obenson
May 31, 2011 5:37 AM
33 Comments
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Voting will closed at the end of today. The winner of the $1,000 cash prize will be announced by the end of this week!

Initially announced on the old S&A website, on March 4th... the Shadow And Act Dxebuts New Digital Filmmaker Showcase, an alliance with CEI Media Partners.

After about a month of receiving submissions, the next phase of the competition continues; and this is the part where YOU all come in, if you haven't already voted.

Feel free to read the instructions below. Otherwise... first watch the 11 short films that follow; and after that, (CLICK HERE TO VOTE) for the films that you like the best. That's it! Easy enough right?

As a refresher... the gist of it... the Showcase is an online short film competition where viewers vote for their favorite films and the winning filmmakers receive cash prizes. Each of the 5 (1 every 2 months) qualifying round winner receives $1,000; final round grand prize winner receives an additional $4,000. Winners will be determined by the number of votes they receive in each round. Among non-winning entries, one film will be announced as the popular winner at the end of the season based on cumulative votes received and awarded $1,000. Crucial submission criteria: films had to feature a protagonist of African descent and themes reflective of the African Diaspora experience.

If you'd like to read all the details you can download the FAQs in PDF format HERE.

Otherwise... first watch the 11 short films submitted below; and after that, follow the link (HERE) to the survey page to cast your votes for the films that you like the best. That's it! Easy enough right?

So, without further ado, here are the 11 inaugural Shadow And Act Filmmaker Digital Showcase films (in alphabetical order); NOTE: For some reason the films aren't showing in Internet Explorer browsers; so please use Firefox or Safari if you experience any problems with play black:

Break-In:
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Casting Notice:
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Cocoa Love:
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Dark Secret:
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Grace Period:
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In The Wind:
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Loo$e ¢hange:
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Lovers:
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The Man In the Glass Case:
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Their Eyes Were Watching Gummy Bears:
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Thursday:
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33 Comments

  • T. Dixon | May 16, 2011 2:07 AMReply

    Is there a permanent website for information about black experimental film news and events?

    T.

  • Yoshi | May 15, 2011 5:53 AMReply

    Why is "In The Wind" at the bottom?! I've voted for it multiple times but why hasn't it even broken 100 votes?! I do think that the voting should've been limited to 5 at most rather than unlimited but oh well.

    I did enjoy the top 4 films though. Just think "In The Wind" should be in the top 5 at least. Those monologues were amazing!!

  • Darkan | May 14, 2011 8:47 AMReply

    Casting Notice is the best!!!! Hands down!

  • bohemian_princess | May 12, 2011 12:10 PMReply

    Am I the only one that can't actually see the films? The videos aren't playing. I'm not having this issue on any other website so I'm totally confused.

  • KingPin | May 12, 2011 2:18 AMReply

    I loved the Man in the Glass Case. It was smart and well written. I liked Gummy Bears and In the Wind as well. Each of these films had cohesive stories and their caliber of acting was top notch.

  • FilmBuffGuy | May 12, 2011 2:09 AMReply

    Their eyes were Watching Gummy Bears, The Man in the Glass case, and In the Wind are the three winners in my book. Honorable mentions go to Lovers, Thursday, and Casting Notice. Is the voting fixed? I vote but no change.

  • Director of Break-In | May 11, 2011 11:19 AMReply

    To Other Song, I value your opinion. And I understand your point of view.

    First I want to say that, my intentions were not to make whites look good and blacks look bad. I just wanted to make a film that included others. When I say others, I mean different races. My first 3 years of film school, I only made films with an all black cast. It never crossed my mind that blacks would find it offensive putting a white guy in the film.

    And Second, I can say that I have been in an abusive relationship with a black man. The first time he hit me, I was pregnant with his first child. And when I was 6 months pregnant with his second child, he beat me up, poured water on my head, while I was still on the floor from him hitting me. Pulled me off the floor by my hair. Then proceeded to force me upstairs to his room. Meanwhile my 3 yr old first child was left crying on the living room couch, having witnessed the abuse. That day, my kid’s father raped me, strangled me to stop me from yelling for help, and etc. He was always sadistic like that when he got mad. Then after it was all over, he sends me home, but not before telling me, “No man will ever want me but him. Because I was about to have his 2nd child and no man wants a woman with two kids that's not his own”.

    Why is it wrong to show what it obviously an issue in the black community? What if I did a film about a single black mother raising two children on her own with no the help from the deadbeat black father? And would it be wrong to have the lead character get involved with a Hispanic guy? Probably not as much. The issue here is that black men hate to see black women with white men. Racism still exists. A black woman can’t show up in the hood with a white boyfriend and not get dirty looks and rude comments. But that same black woman might go into a white neighborhood with her white boyfriend and not receive the attitude/racism.

    I rarely show Break-In because of this reaction. However I have asked various black men how they felt after seeing my film, and I’ve gotten mixed opinions concerning it. Some find it offensive. Some don’t. What I realize is you can’t please everybody.

    Thanks again for your comment “Other Song”.

  • other song | May 11, 2011 6:05 AMReply

    Director,

    I respect that you're writing from a real place and it's unfortunate that you've had to deal with such bullshit. I can tell you're a stronger person for it.

    The issue is that abuse exists in EVERY community. It isn't peculiar to Black people. And more often than not, there are socio-economic issues that play a heavier role in these kinds of things before race even comes into the picture.

    I come from a two-parent household. To this day my parents are married. I've had great relationships with Black and non-Black women. and I'm not the only one; there are lots of us out there; male and female.

    So why I should I turn on the TV and be subjected to the same damn narrative about violent, sexually abusive Black males and sexually deviant Black women?

    That's where I was coming from. And I'm sure there are thousands, if not millions of Black families that feel the same way. Believe me, I know abuse happens in the Black community. It's definitely an issue! I just feel like we've got other stuff going for ourselves too. We have to look at the larger picture.

    It's our job to enlighten ourselves, not just 'bitch about things'.

    and to say that "black men don't like white guys with black women = racism" is just incorrect.

    first of all, the circumstances that have forced many minorities (not just Black) into poor households packed with ignorance and violence has A LOT to do with racist, powerful white males who form government/education/hiring policies that exclude minorities from aspiring to anything better.

    then all of a sudden, we're the problem now? And the White guy is the man of reason? the cultured one? That's such bullshit!

    anyway, it's such a big issue that obviously can't be discussed on Shadow. I respect where you're coming from. I just think you'll find a lot of brothas are very open minded; the intelligent ones anyway.

    I personally don't trip on interracial partnerships and stuff. The only thing that REALLY bugs me is that the playing field is not level. White males are always presented as being desirable, funny, romantic, complex, interesting, etc BY DEFAULT (all the good traits) while every other type of male (Asian, Latino, Black, Indian, Native American) is shoved into a narrow box with a negative stereotype. So tell me how that's fair.

    if we really believe in equality/interracial dating/true love for all, then all options must be available and respected.

  • BlackArtLove | May 11, 2011 5:09 AMReply

    After watching every short there were definitely films I enjoyed and some that just weren't my cup of tea. I don't feel that it is necessary to leave such comments that intend to do more harm than show support for fellow Black films and Black Filmmakers. Hollywood has done that enough already! Art is subjective meaning we each come to discover, deconstruct, and define it in our own individual particularity. This venue of comments should be a celebration of those films you found to be to your liking, rather than a slandering of those you did not. My favorite film was The Man in the Glass Case. I felt the direction, acting, story, and artistry were flawless. The film itself was very dark but in a more sophisticated way, one unlike the stereotypical dark film which lends itself to massive amounts of violence. I love how the James (the main character) see's life as black & white and without shades of gray. This was cleverly thought out by the director and I wanted to see more of this film. I've tried voting for several films and their response percent never seems to update. The voting system itself is questionable. It would be unfortunate if films were judged on popularity rather than merit. I hope this isn't the case.

  • SayNay | May 10, 2011 10:48 AMReply

    Wow the last time I voted there seemed to be a death battle going between "Cocoa Love" and "Their Eyes Were Watching Gummy Bears" apparently people have been busy.

  • Kimbo Slice | May 10, 2011 10:36 AMReply

    Dark Secret is one massive mess of a film. Wow. Kinda stunned it made the cut.

  • other song | May 10, 2011 9:44 AMReply

    Since the director of Break-In is on here, I might as well voice my opinion.

    Your short is one of the worst shorts I've ever seen. It made me mad at the time. I watched it thinking: what's the point of this? Especially in 2011? We have the violent Black Man, White Savior and heart of gold Black woman in the middle. I watched it the whole way through to see if it would get better, and it just didnt.

    I wouldn't mind so much if the craft was excellent. Maybe some layered characters, non-cliche circumstances and interesting theme we haven't quite seen in a while. But instead, I just felt bludgeoned with predictable, cringe-worthy cliche stuff. Unless this film was a direct personal experience of yours (or someone close to you), I really don't see why this film should have been made.

    I'm really tired of movies/shorts/music/etc that portrays brothas and sistas in a bad light just for the sake of it. I have no beef with black women. I love em, just like I love people in general. Then why should I watch a movie where they seem to have beef with me? and that goes for brothas too. the ones who write bullshit books about "black women aint doin this, and aren't about that..." stereotype black women, etc

    If you aren't part of the solution, you're part of the problem.

    We have a responsibility to respect ourselves and make better sh*t. I'm not saying we should be goody-too shoes or whatever. You all know what I'm talking about. Just better sh*t.

    I look forward to your other material. Good to hear that you're writing and getting better at this. I wish you luck.

  • Natalie | May 9, 2011 7:35 AMReply

    Lovers is so creative and different! I love it.

  • Director of Break-In | May 5, 2011 2:24 AMReply

    To the anonymous person that gives himself the name "Old Wise One": You're not critiquing. You're rude and arrogant. This is the reason i said what i said in my earlier comment.

    And trust me sweetie, I'm not "gloating and smiling and thinking "Break-In" is Stellar".

    I made Break-In 3 yrs ago and have shown it only to friends and family up till now.

    BUT I've also written a feature comedy screenplay, am editing a feature documentary for someone, and am researching my butt off so I can get started on writing a sci-fi end of the world film. Plus i'm in the process of going back to film school to get my Masters. So "Break-In" is by far, the least I have to offer. Nice guess though, Old Wise One.

    PS. I'd love to see what you've done.

  • oldwiseone | May 5, 2011 1:27 AMReply

    The majority of these films are lackluster. The fact that they've been uploaded, on a major site, for all to see, is embarrassing. I almost feel sorry for the 2 or 3 solid films that have been cobbled together in this grossly inconsistent showcase.

    And to the director of Break-In, all criticism is not "hate". No one's personally attacking you. Your self-righteous comment is almost laughable though (as is your film). People with actual talent do peruse this sight. Often. They're not hating. Trust me. It's almost as if the black community is not allowed (or expected) to critique the work created by black filmmakers. I refuse to remain silent while you gloat and smile, thinking you've made something stellar when in actuality, you've made a very mediocre film. Fortunately for you, yours isn't the worst of the bunch.

    My sincere apologies to Casting Notice.

  • Jason Pollard | May 4, 2011 11:43 AMReply

    If it's a popularity contest, so be it...that's what the Oscars (and most festivals) are anyway. So respect to the filmmakers who can get enough votes at the end of the month. The filmmaking team behind Cocoa Love is doing a great job getting the word out and the film is funny.

  • Director of Break-In | May 4, 2011 8:43 AMReply

    LMAO at those that have Sh** to say about other people's work. Is your film in the Showcase? Better yet, Did you even make a film??? I ask this, cause Real filmmakers who know the Blood, Sweat, and Tears that go into filmmaking, are too humble to talk down on someone else's work.

    SMH, cause It's always the untalented ones who don't have anything going for themselves that hate on others.

    In Chris Brown's words- "I don't see how you can hate from outside of the club. You can't even get in".

  • observer | May 4, 2011 8:10 AMReply

    1000+ votes with less than 100 views? SMH.

  • anonymous | May 4, 2011 6:16 AMReply

    some of these shorts are a bucket of hot trash.

  • yeah | May 4, 2011 5:07 AMReply

    It sucks that these competitions usually turn into "popularity contests" rather than merit based contests. I couldn't get through most of the shorts...but Casting Notice and Loose Change stood out.

    So are the indiewire folks going to see our "best black shorts" as well? :sigh:

  • Epatric | May 3, 2011 12:45 PMReply

    In the wind had great acting and Cinematography but the story line in Gummy Bears was great and so was the Cinematography, I loved all the camera movement! Casting notice looked good but the story was predictable. Overall though what really struck me and made me smile was the production values of all of the films, BRAVO!!!

  • anonymous | May 3, 2011 2:34 AMReply

    "In the Wind" is like a filmed play, but damn if those monologues aren't fantastic. Those cats went H.A.M.

  • anonymous | May 3, 2011 1:57 AMReply

    Why does "Dark Secret" look like a 90's porno that R. Kelly's about to pop up in?

  • anonymous | May 3, 2011 1:41 AMReply

    Break-In has to be by far one of the funniest films on this page.

  • ODB | May 1, 2011 11:10 AMReply

    These other films are hot, but Their Eyes Were Watching Gummy Bears is for the children!!

  • Jason Pollard | May 1, 2011 10:18 AMReply

    Their Eyes Were Watching Gummy Bears was funny!

  • Kimberly | May 1, 2011 9:35 AMReply

    Dark Secret is very educational. This needs to be mad as a full compete movie to show to the world!!

  • Albert | April 30, 2011 10:58 AMReply

    Their Eyes Were Watching Gummy Bears?! Hilarious.

  • tambay | April 30, 2011 10:49 AMReply

    Don't forget to click on the link to vote guys... thanks!

  • Laura | April 30, 2011 8:09 AMReply

    I feel that the Man in the Glass Case was the best. I love the editing of In The Wind. I enjoyed Casting Notice a great deal.

  • Ayva | April 30, 2011 8:08 AMReply

    Dark Secret has a message for the African American community.

  • other song | April 30, 2011 7:14 AMReply

    of these, the best two IMO are "In the Wind" and "Casting Notice"

  • incrediblejeff | April 30, 2011 5:33 AMReply

    In The Wind and The Man In the Glass Case are great.

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