Highlights from ASFF 2012

ASFF 2012 built upon the success of the inaugural event with even more exceptional films, venues and speakers. Continuing its drive to champion the art of short filmmaking, the 2012 festival screened 200 films from 25 countries across 15 different locations, all within the scenic Bar Walls of York. Here we present an overview of the event, including audience feedback, category winners and selected press coverage.

Masterclasses were held by key industry figures such as Danny Cohen (BAFTA nominated cinematographer of The King’s Speech, The Boat That Rocked and Glorious 39), Barry Ryan the head of Warp films (Dead Man’s Shoes, Four Lions, This is England and Submarine) and Matt Greenhalgh (BAFTA winning screenwriter of Control and Nowhere Boy). Alongside screenings, there were panel discussions; special events and parties such as Meet the Filmmakers, which provided an opportunity for filmmakers to network with each other and audiences alike.

In only its second year, ASFF firmly established itself as one of the most promising new film festivals on the circuit, bringing thousands to the city as well as creating new audiences within its locality. Through its innovative fusion of remarkable venues and diverse film programme, ASFF has created an event that is truly unique and is pushing the boundaries of the short film landscape both in the UK and abroad. A selection of 2012 highlights and audience feedback can be found below.

Winners from ASFF 2012

The Sugar Bowl (Best Documentary/Overall Festival Winner) Shasha Nakhai/RIchard Williamson, Canada/Philippines. Squire Entertainment

Hollow (People’s Choice) Rob Sorrenti, UK Future Time Pictures

Photoshopping (Best Comedy) Mark Davenport, UK FishmongerFilm

Dylan’s Room (Best Drama) Layke Anderson, UK Independent

Augenblicke (Best Thriller) Martin Bargiel, Germany. into focus. Hannover University of Applied Science & Arts

Let It Go (Best Music Video) Ashley Dean, UK Broken Pixel

Reduction Study: Ping Pong (Best Art Film) Joanna Tam, USA Independent

The Jockstrap Raiders (Best Animation) Mark Nelson, USA University of California, Los Angeles

To The Sea (Best Experimental Film) Anna Valdez Hanks/Anna Blandford, UK Beyond Films

Masterclasses at ASFF 2012


BAFTA nominated Cinematographer Danny Cohen (The King’s Speech, The Boat That Rocked ) will join us to discuss his creative process. Fresh from completing Tom Hooper’s adaptation of musical Les Misérables, he will discuss the process of working with directors across features, shorts and television drama.

Channel 4

With the arrival of the DSLR revolution and online video platforms like Vimeo, the way that audiences are consuming and producing media has changed. Channel 4’s Short Form Editor Ravi Amaratunga will showcase some of the best works from Random Acts, The Shooting Gallery. Followed by a lively Q&A.

Chris Jones

It’s Never Been a Better Time to Be a Filmmaker… but, on the flipside, we now compete in an overcrowded filmmakers’ world. Chris Jones, filmmaker, Director of London Screenwriters’ Festival and co-creater and author of The Guerilla Film Maker’s Handbook will discuss how to get your production moving.

Ed Atkins / Patrick Ward

Screening Defining Holes, Dr Sam Lackey, Curator at The Hepworth Wakefield, will discuss with Ed and Patrick video art and explore the boundaries between contemporary practice and traditional filmmaking. Reflecting on their own work, both Ed and Patrick will explain how they use this medium as an art form.

Hussain Currimbhoy

Hussain Currimbhoy, Programmer at Sheffield Doc/Fest, will cover the programming principles and processes of the international documentary festival. This masterclass will offer insights into ensuring your film gets noticed, and advice on getting your film onto the festival circuit and how filmmakers should approach festivals.

Matt Greenhalgh

BAFTA award winning Screenwriter Matt Greenhalgh (Control, Nowhere Boy) will give insight into the finer details of screenwriting in a lively discussion event. Find out how to make your screenplays stand out, pick up some new approaches to screenwriting, and gather expert tips on how to succeed in the industry.

Myles McLeod

BAFTA winning Animators The Brothers McLeod have worked for BBC and Disney, directed TV commercials for Guinness and Skittles, and worked with Tate and Wii/PlayStation. Myles McLeod will provide insight into creating an animated world, exploring the process of shaping characters in innovative and striking ways.

Panel Discussion

How do critics affect the industry? Ginette Vincendeau, Professor of Film Studies at King’s College London, contributor to Sight & Sound and BBC Radio; Jason Wood, Curzon Cinemas Programmer and Acquisitions Advisor for Artificial Eye, and Matt Bochenski, Editor of Little White Lies address this question.


Chris Thomas of Raindance Film Festival will give you a viable plan and dozens of filmmaking tips on what works in the business. Including a troubleshooting session covering finding cast and crew, shooting tips, getting your film seen, climbing the career ladder, distribution, exhibition and how to get paid.

Tabitha Jackson

Tabitha Jackson is Channel 4’s Commissioning Editor for Arts. Tabitha will focus on the recent series All in the Best Possible Taste with Grayson Perry, illustrating television’s attempts to work with artists and present visual art in a new, more accessible way. The series looks at the relationship between taste and class.

Warp Films

Barry Ryan, Head of Production for Warp Films, (producer behind Dead Man’s Shoes, This Is England) will bring you the latest in film production and provide some expert tips for the best way to get ahead in the industry. He will explore the intricacies of film production and offer insights into what the future looks like for filmmakers.

Inside ASFF 2012

Festival Winner: The Sugar Bowl


It was great fun and I was glad to be part of it. Well done with the festival – it’s got a great vibe about it and everyone has a real passion.
Barry Ryan, Head of Production at Warp Films
We all had a great time in York. We really enjoyed the city and the event and are sorry that we couldn’t stay for an extra night.
Nilgin Yusuf, Programme Director, Media Course Director, MA Fashion Media Production, The London College of Fashion
Your festival is impressive, especially for one in only its second year. Your team were a total pleasure to work with. Special mention to your pre-production, event management and technical teams who were brilliant on the day.
Katie Campbell, Regional Programme Director and Events Producer, BAFTA
ASFF was incredible and I wish it wasn’t over already!
Rachael Cloughton, LINE Magazine
The Aesthetica Short Film Festival is establishing itself as one of the cultural highlights of the city’s calendar, which highlights fabulous and unusual locations to be impromptu cinemas. I’m delighted the festival was so successful and hope next year’s brings as much inspiration, enrichment and revenue to the city.
Councillor Sonja Crisp, Cabinet Member for Leisure, Culture and Tourism
Now in its second year, the Aesthetica Short Film Festival packs over 200 titles from more than 25 countries into its four-day programme. Based in various historic venues across York, the event affords newcomers an opportunity to get their work seen and also to see the pictures being produced by their contemporaries from around the world.
Empire Online, David Parkinson
The Aesthetica Short Film Festival was a great event, and one which York is delighted to host. The wide range of venues shows the very best of York to the many visitors that attended, from a variety of countries. The global draw of this festival only helps to further York’s profile as a city open for business.
Councillor James Alexander, Leader of City of York Council