Highlights from ASFF 2014

ASFF 2014 showcased 300 short films from 40 countries worldwide. The festival transformed the city of York through pop-up cinema, moving between the city’s most treasured and iconic locations. New strands in fashion and advertising, alongside masterclasses and networking events, presented an opportunity to experience quality independent film and hear directly from industry leaders.

The new strands for 2014 – Fashion and Advertising – showcased the very best creative campaigns from the industry, and included brands such as Vivienne Westwood, Swarovski, Louis Vuitton, Trager Delaney, Topshop, River Island, Karen Millen, Triwa watches and Hub Footwear. Sponsored by London College of Fashion, the fashion strand established a place for serious discussion regarding fashion film. Two directors from Ridley Scott Associates and Sara Wilson, Stylist and Photography Manager at Jigsaw, contextualised the advertising short films prior to the first screening on Friday 7 November.

There were also a series of masterclasses and workshops with leading industry figures from BAFTA, Channel 4, Sheffield Doc/Fest, Double Negative and many more, plus daily networking sessions and evening events. Special screening programmes were presented by Internationale Kurzfilmtage Winterthur sponsored by Embassy of Switzerland, Clermont-Ferrand Short Film Festival, Yorkshire Film Archive and Creative England’s iShorts and there were official selections from our guest countries: Iraq, Japan and Lebanon.

See the Opening Night in pictures, courtesy of Jim Poyner: www.jimpoyner.co.uk/blog.

Winners from ASFF 2014

Coda (Best Animation / Festival Winner) Alan Holly (Ireland) and maps and plans

Eine Gute Geschichte (Best Drama) Martin Christopher Bode (Germany) Media Boutique Munich / Panda Pictures GmbH

Léthé (Best Experimental) Harald Hutter (France/UK) Scotland Screen Academy

Herd in Iceland (Best Documentary) Lindsay Blatt (USA/Iceland) Herd in Iceland Inc

Keeping Up With The Joneses (Best Thriller) Michael Pearce (UK) Incendiary Pictures & Agile Films

Public Service Broadcasting – Night Mail (Best Music Video) Robert Hackett (UK) Antagonist Films

The Directors Project (Best Advertising) Ben Marshall (UK) Jigsaw

River Island x Joseph Turvey feat. Justanorm (Best Fashion) Alex Turvey (UK) White Lodge

Girl Power (Best Comedy) Benjamin Bee (UK) Attercop Productions

Forgotten Memories from the End of the World (Best Artists' Film) Danilo Godoy (Brazil) Independent

Masterclasses at ASFF 2014

Lisa Gunning – The Craft of Editing

BAFTA-nominated editor Lisa Gunning has worked on commercials to collaborations with Anthony Minghella and Goldfrapp to features including Seven Psychopaths and Nowhere Boy. Technological tools of filmmaking are accessible, however, the craft of using them to shape a story remains vital. She reveals the trade editor’s secrets and the post-production process.

Ridley Scott Associates – The Art of Advertising

Before Alien and Blade Runner, Ridley Scott and his company were honing their talents on creating memorable TV adverts, from Hovis bread to the launch of the Apple Mac. Director Barney Cokeliss and producer Lisa Joseph will speak about their work in short film and commercials for the likes of Volkswagen and Lexus and how to collaborate with brands on projects.

Kathryn Ferguson – The Rise of Fashion Film

Kathryn Ferguson has created films for leading brands and designers, from Chloe to Selfridges, as well as for musicians including Lady Gaga and Sinead O’Connor. She has worked around the world as a curator specialising in the new and emerging genre of fashion film. In this session she will talk about its wider impact on society and on visual culture.

Creative Diversity Team – Getting Your Films Noticed

Channel 4’s Creative Diversity Team are the first people to see the work of emerging creatives who hope to bring their work to a channel that has a reputation for innovative and diverse programming and a long history of supporting new and upcoming talent. In this masterclass, they will disclose the criteria used to assess pitches from aspiring filmmakers.

Association of Camera Operators – Creating A Visual Narrative

The often unsung heroes behind the lens step out of the shadows to offer their insights into how they created the award-winning visuals that brought to life the outer-space peril of Gravity, the epic action of Gladiator, the magic of Harry Potter or the sumptuous period atmosphere of Downton Abbey.

Anna Smith – The Role of Film Criticism

With the rise of social media, is the critic’s role still vital to a thriving film culture? Anna Smith, one of the UK’s leading film journalists, both in print and on TV, who has written for EmpireTime Out and the Guardian and is Chair of Critic’s Circle Film, explores the influence of criticism today and the practicalities of screenings. Suitable for those interested in film journalism.

Craig McNeil – The A-Z of Producing Music Videos

Today’s music audiences are not only media-savvy but media-saturated, so how do you get your artist noticed? Craig McNeil, Director of Creative Projects at Beggars, one of the largest groups of independent record labels in the world, home to Adele, Daughter, British Sea Power and Queens Of The Stone Age, explains the secrets of a successful music video.

Indiegogo – Techniques for Crowdfunding Success

Crowdfunding is a vital part of the creative economy. Recently, it has shown its power by generating the financial backing for features like Iron Sky: The Coming Race and Palo Alto Stories by James Franco. Short film producer Miranda Fleming  will explain how to effectively create a funding campaign to harness people power in bringing your project to the screen.

Anna Parker – Programming Documentaries

Now in its 21st year, Sheffield’s Doc/Fest is one of the world’s leading events and marketplaces for documentary film and competition is tough to get access to such a strong global platform. Market Place Manager, Anna Parker, discusses the selection criteria, the MeetMarket and other initiatives at Doc/Fest as well as tips on getting your work noticed.

Mark Herman – Screenwriting and Directing

Best known for writing and directing outstanding films including The Boy in the Striped PyjamasBrassed Off and Little Voice, BAFTA nominated Mark Herman will, in conversation, talk about his work both behind the camera and as a screenwriter. He will also draw upon his extensive experience working in the industry for over 20 years and expand upon his current projects.

Film and Video Umbrella – Artists’ Film & Moving Image Today

Film and Video Umbrella Director Steven Bode showcases a cross-section of recent FVU commissions and looks back through the archive, which includes stand-out pieces by Isaac Julien, Jane & Louise Wilson, Cory Arcangel, Gillian Wearing and Mark Leckey, to trace a series of themes and preoccupations which resonate through from the past to the present.

Animation Production and Design with BlinkInk

Winners of the British Animation Award, Blinkink’s signature style combining animation and live action has been catching the public eye from John Lewis’s The Bear and the Hare Christmas campaign to the award-winning video for Bjork’s Mutual Core. Executive producer James Stevenson Bretton will talk about the fast-changing world of animation production today.

Double Negative – Building the Digital World

Double Negative is one of the world’s leading VFX studios creating high end visual effects and ground breaking digital environments and creatures for film & television. Victoria Long will talk about the company’s growth, creative drive, how to get into the industry and showcase their recent work including VFX breakdowns revealing the magic behind some of this years biggest films.

The Meeting Point Between Film & Gaming with Charles Cecil

BAFTA Cymru award winner Charles Cecil MBE is Revolution’s Managing Director focusing on writing and design. He will discuss the narrative and aesthetic aspects of interactive entertainment and the crossover between film and gaming. He is an ambassador for BAFTA (Video Games) and sits on the BFI and Screen Yorkshire Boards.

Panel Discussion – The Changing Face of Short Film

Short film is vital to the development of the UK’s film industry but marginalised in distribution in spite of its daily consumption. Our panel: Philip Ilson (London Short Film Festival), Maggie Ellis (Film London) Dave Smith (Northern Film School), Iain Gardner (EIFF) and Alex Heathcote (Producer at Ridley Scott Associates) debate the future of the form.

Video Interviews


We very much enjoyed meeting some of the filmmakers at the Friday Night Party and saw some interesting films. Our comedy screening at 1331 was very popular!
Andy Price, ASFF Filmmaker
It's a wonderful event. We will be submitting every year and bringing students every year, for sure. The way the festival is integrated into the town is superb, there was a real buzz in the city. So many friendly people, great masterclasses, […] superb projection in excellent spaces, lovely volunteers, easily one of the best festival experiences I've ever had.
Neil Fox, Lecturer in Film and Digital Media at Falmouth University
Thanks again for including Brit i am in the festival. Our director Adam reported back on what a great time he had, how beautiful all the screening venues were and also that the programme of seminars and talks were really inspiring. We're also, obviously delighted to have the chance to enter the BAFTAs.
Andi Osho, ASFF Filmmaker
Hayley and I both enjoyed ASFF immensely and we are incredibly grateful that AIR was showcased at the Meet The Filmmakers panel event. We had excellent feedback after the screening and it was a brilliant opportunity to meet the other filmmakers and screen the film to a larger audience.
Emma Maclennan, ASFF Meet the Filmmakers Panelist
My producer and I had a wonderful time, even more than last year. We enjoyed ourselves, watched great films and met people we will probably work with in the future.
Louis Lagayette, ASFF Filmmaker
A huge thank you for inviting us up to your wonderful festival. Alex and I had a brilliant time, saw some very interesting shorts and met some great people. All in the beautiful surroundings of York to boot. What more could you want.
Mark Nunneley, Ridley Scott Associates
ASFF was most rewarding for me and the film's producer Pia in so many ways. It was the first time I saw my film on the big screen and meeting many other filmmakers and festival organisers was enlightening. I saw many films and attended masterclasses that were very rewarding. ASFF was a game changer for me in many ways, and I will be forever grateful.
Glen Mackay, ASFF Filmmaker
I had a lovely time in York and I was really impressed with the festival, the programme, the organisation, the networking opportunities, the lot!
Cecilia Stenbom, ASFF Filmmaker