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Fine Cut Festival of Films: Judges Select 14 Student Finalists for 2019 Contest

Local public broadcaster KCET has announced the 14 student short film finalists for the 20th annual Fine Cut Festival of Films.

Finalists, all hailing from schools across Southern California, will have their shorts aired as part of a television series, premiering Oct. 2 and running until Nov. 6 on KCET.  Each film will premiere on a weekly basis, airing on themed days that are in line with their respective stories, such as “Fight,” “Play,” “Come Alive,” “Separated,” “Save Me!” and “You’re Crazy.”

Finalists include “The Moon and the Night” (Erin Lau), “Prey” (Jing Sun), “Delay of Game” (Shaun Dikilato), “888 Tours” (Jennifer Nie), “Teddy Mate” (Rommel Villa), “Love Letter Rescue Squad” (Megan Rossman),”Gallery Experience” (Jinghan Tian), “Lalo’s House” (Kelley Kali), “Starlight” (Robyn Romaine), “Bleeding, Kansas” (Daniel Lafrentz), “Assembly Required” (Christian Whittemore), Hau Nguyen’s Coast College’s Food Riders documentary, “Divided” (Brynne McKee, Jackie Palacios, Benjamin Allen, Jack Mullinkosson), and “Shoot the Moon” (William Rowe).

Schools represented by the finalists include USC, Cal State LA, CalArts, UCLA and Chapman University.

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Each filmmaker was selected out of a pool of 400 applicants by a panel of industry veterans. Judges included film and TV producer Effie T. Brown, actress/writer/composer Marianne Jean-Baptiste, story artist Michael Herrera, Variety senior editor and KCRW “Screengrab” host Michael Schneider, IDA’s director of programming and policy Claire Aguilar, documentary filmmaker Kimmie Kim, Deadline.com chief film critic Pete Hammond and animator/writer/producer Van Partible.

Finalists were chosen from the short films (25 minutes or under) submitted in the categories of documentary, animation and narrative shorts.

A variety of prize packages valued between $2,500 and $10,000 will be awarded to winners while one exceptional filmmaker will be afforded the opportunity to premiere their film at the Cannes International Film Festival as part of the American Pavilion Emerging Filmmaker showcase. One filmmaker who will be chosen as The Jack Larson Southern California Student Filmmaker Award​ (which recognizes one filmmaker’s strength as a storyteller) will be will be announced at a private awards ceremony and screening event on Thurs., Sept. 26.

Here’s a promo for the new season:

[Pictured: “The Moon and the Night,” by Erin Lau.]

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