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Time-Bending Sci-Fi Thriller 'Record/Play' Makes This Year's Viewfinder List (Feature Treatment?)

Photo of Tambay A. Obenson By Tambay A. Obenson | Shadow and Act December 14, 2012 at 10:27AM

This is the first time I'm hearing of this Viewfinder List; but apparently, it's been printed since 2010.
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Record/play

This is the first time I'm hearing of this Viewfinder List; but apparently, it's been printed since 2010.

In short, titled the Viewfinder List, comprises of the year's top 10 short films/commercials/music videos, compiled by a a group that polls studio executives, producers and creatives annually, for their picks.

The Viewfinder List is somewhat similar to The Black List (the year's best un-produced screenplays, selected using pretty much the same method), and, as has happened in past years, some of the shorts that make the list will likely be optioned to be expanded into feature-length films. In fact, as Deadline notes, a few of them already have, and are on their way to becoming feature films. and some of their directors got jobs and in this day and age, it all helps. Some of these have already been lined up for feature treatment, including the top two films on this year’s list.

But allow me to draw your attention to one of the films that made this year's cut - a short film that we first alerted you to when it was announced to be in competition at the Urbanworld Film Festival this year (making its USA premiere), titled Record/Play, directed by Jesse Atlas, starring Mustafa Shakir and Deepti Gupta.

In the drama/sci-fi/thriller, a malfunctioning cassette tape captures more than just audio. 

War, fate, and a broken Walkman transcend time and space in this sci-fi love story.

The film, which I've seen, explores an intriguing idea that you probably won't immediately, completely grasp in the teaser below. As I always say, I always appreciate filmmakers pushing for something beyond the usual, expected fare.

Plus both of its leads are of color - a black man and an Indian woman.

The film won the Best Short Film award at Urbanworld, and is next scheduled to screen at the Sundance Film Festival next month.

Might it be one of those Viewfinder List films that eventually gets feature film attention? And if it does, will the racial/ethnic make-up of the cast stay the same? Instead of a black man and an Indian woman, we'll get Jake Gyllenhaal and Amanda Seyfried.


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