Lakeshore Arts, along with Fifth Ground Entertainment, is gearing up to host its first ever short film festival, an exciting new event that’s sure to give Etobicoke a new place on the map of the Toronto art scene.
LakeShorts International Short Film Festival is set to launch Saturday at the Assembly Hall, and will feature the talents of filmmakers both locally and internationally, said Susan Nagy, executive director of Lakeshore Arts.
Nagy said the idea spawned from a previous Lakeshore Arts program, My Neighbour’s An Artist, which showcased a film screening of local Etobicoke actors, directors and filmmakers.
“One of the things filmmakers of short films find challenging is there’s not a lot of opportunities to get their films showcased,” Nagy said, “…And there really was nothing in South Etobicoke of that calibre.”
One of the artists whose film was shown was directed by local actress and LakeShorts festival director, Michelle Nolden, who thought the event went so well that Etobicoke should have a short film festival of its own.
Nolden said LakeShorts will feature 13 short films chosen from more than 110 film submissions that came from local artists to filmmakers all over the world including Iran, Spain and Korea.
“There’s funny stuff. There’s thought provoking films. There are some really poignant films. It’s a real different and diverse programming,” she said.
Five jurors, including Nagy and Nolden, selected the chosen 13 that include ‘Sis’ from the U.K., ‘It’s Just Gary’ from Australia and ‘Seven Layer Dip’ from the U.S., to name a few.
Nolden said the films are an eclectic mix of art films, drama and comedies, and each film in the festival is interesting in a different way.
Nagy said it was a challenging process to pick the final 13 films because there were so many great ones to choose from, but they are excited about the ones that were chosen and think people will be too.
“There definitely is something for everyone,” she said. “I think they’ll be a lot of chatter like, ‘What film was your favourite, what did you think,’ and I think people will really enjoy the experience and are going to be surprised and pumped that they saw this in South Etobicoke.”
The event will be hosted by film critic Richard Crouse and once you walk down the blue carpet, people are welcome to take a picture with Crouse in front of the film festival poster.
“It’s a real film festival experience,” Nolden said. “You walk down a blue carpet and we have a videographer and photographer. There’s wine and finger food, so it will really feel like a gala experience.”
The event is being catered by Cafe du Lac, and 20 local sponsors in total are participating making it a real community event.
Nagy said LakeShorts is a win-win situation for the artists and the community because it’s a great way to create new networks and attract new audiences to Etobicoke community arts scene.
Both Nagy and Nolden said they hope this inaugural event is one of many to come and becomes an annual event for South Etobicoke. They also hope to eventually extend the event to an entire weekend.
LakeShorts takes place on Saturday, May 7, at 6:30 p.m. at The Assembly Hall, 1 Colonel Samuel Smith Park Dr. Tickets are $40 and can be purchased online at www.lakeshorts.ca
For more information, please call 416-201-7093.
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