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ASFF 2022: Day Five

The 2022 Aesthetica Short Film Festival enters its penultimate day. There is a wonderful selection of guests, live events, in-person and virtual screenings. Today’s 10 to See includes a VFX masterclass with Framestore’s Stuart Penn and the opening of workshops designed for budding young filmmakers.

Official Selection: Be Yourself, Everybody Else Is Taken

This year’s fifth strand, Be Yourself, Everybody Else is Taken, an examination of identity and the self. These films dive deep into memories, experiences and desires across animation, comedy, experimental, dance and drama. Santtu Salminen’s Primal Therapy offers self-help styling whilst Isla Bardenoch’s dance epic One Night is a cathartic release: either way, these films remind you, first and foremost, to be yourself.

Various times and locations

Kids’ Workshops

Film is for everyone, and there’s nothing more inspiring than watching young people get creative. Across two days, we offer the chance for children to learn how to direct and edit their own films. Run by Spark Media Arts, in these three-hour workshops – Do You Want to Be A Director (ages 7-10) and How To Make A Film (ages 11-14) – children are invited to find their inner filmmaker and share their unique voice.

Various times at York St John Creative Centre

World-building: A VFX Masterclass from Framestore

When it comes to filmmaking tools, visual effects are ubiquitous in the modern-day moviemaking landscape and a vital component, whether helping create science-fiction spectacles or lavish period dramas. In the UK, Framestore is one of the leading VFX houses, providing specialist work on such films as Avengers: Endgame, Gravity, and Avatar. In this session, VFX Supervisor Stuart Penn shares some insights into his discipline.

10:30-11:30 | Yorkshire Museum

Networking: Developing Your Festival Strategy

Film festivals are essential ports of call for any film in the independent sector. To assist filmmakers, Festival Formula is a leading strategy consultancy and submission service across Europe. This session aims to help director and producers find their place within the often bewildering and ever-growing festival circuit.

11:30-13:00 | York Theatre Royal Upper Foyer

Making The Cut: An Editor’s Guide

Carly Brown has over a decade’s experience in film and television, working for the likes of HBO, Sky and Disney+. Her credits include The Crown, Industry and Kenneth Branagh’s Oscar-winner Belfast. Here, she discusses her transition from assistant editor to editor, while also offering essential advice on assembling raw footage and finding a project’s rhythm.

13:30-14:30 | Yorkshire Museum

Creating your own Platform: NFTs & the Metaverse

The emergence of NFTs over the past couple of years is arguably one of the most exciting developments in the world of digital imagery. Classic films, such as the 1963 Charade starring Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn, are now being sold as non-fungible items, and filmmakers continue to enter this brave new world. In this session, the panel will guide us through blockchain-driven content, asking how filmmakers can reach audiences this way and access a digital income.

14:30-15:30 | York Explore

Bird’s Eye View: She Weaves A Dream

Six filmmakers and artists from Southwest Asia and North Africa come together for this engaging selection of shorts, exploring freedom in creativity. This selection spans comedy, fantasy and documentary, curated by Yasmin Jenoui and Melanie Iredale of Birds’ Eye View. The selection process also included programmers from Flying Broom Women’s Film Festival in Turkey, Beirut International Women Film Festival in Lebanon and Regards de femmes: festival international de film de femmes in Tunisia.

17:00-18:30 | Bootham

Perfecting your Pitch: Guardian Documentaries

Lindsay Poulton, The Guardian’s Head of Documentaries, leads this session as she offers top tips for pitching ideas. Amongst her past successes is the BAFTA-winning The Black Cop by Cherish Oteka, a docudrama about one police officer’s experience being both victim and perpetrator of racism in the police force. Poulton explains how she recognises an award-winning story in the making.

18:00-19:00 | Yorkshire Museum

Pakistan Stories: The Female Gaze

British Council Pakistan brought together Scottish Documentary Institute and Patakha Pictures to mentor 10 filmmakers in the making of five trailblazing documentaries, celebrating 75 years of independence. These films explore injustices faced by women and reframe our understanding of being female in Pakistan, with topics including sight impairment, gender reassignment and sexual abuse.

19:00-20:30 | York St John University

Listening Pitch Premiere

This Listening Pitch is a special collaboration between Audible and Aesthetica, an innovation designed to find original voices and points of view. This year’s award-winners will be screened alongside the 2021 winning film, Blind as a Beat, followed by Q&As with the filmmakers. Receive a free drink on arrival and, with a live DJ performance from Human Capital after the screening, it promises to be a very special night.

19:00-23:00 | NCEM

Aesthetica Short Film Festival 2022 runs in-person from 1-6 November and online until 30 November. Tickets start from £25. Book your Passes.

Words: James Mottram


Lead image: The Devotions, dir. Mia Georgis (2021)
1. Skin and Scales, dir. Darcy Wallace (2021)
2. Manen, dir. Thomas Anglade, Maxime Announ, Lucie Dessertine, Estelle Saint-Jours (ArtFX) (2018)
6. LLL – Silent Dawn, dir. Konstantin Enste (2022)
7. Warsha, dir. Dania Bdeir (2022)
9. My Mother’s Daughter, dir. Ahmen Khawaja, Mariam Khan (2022)
10. Speed of Sound, dir. Jade Ang Jackman (2022) / The Short-Wave Listener, dir. Ross McClean (2022) / Birdsong, dir. Sparsh Ahuja, Omi Gupta (2022)