Vimeo's New Staff Picks Include Bizarre Sundance Jury Award-Winner and Safdie Brothers Short
The November slate of Vimeo Staff Pick Premieres features a short from the Safdie brothers and the surprising film that won the Sundance Jury Award this year.
Last month, we announced Vimeo's decision to take Staff Picks to the next level with Staff Pick Premieres, a curatorial initiative designed to showcase high-quality shorts, some of which have already enjoyed a fruitful life on the festival circuit. In addition to an open submission process—previously, Staff Picks were "discovered" by curators—Staff Picks Premieres promotes selected shorts with on and off-site promotion, including editorial coverage and marketing, which can result in hundreds of thousands of views per film.
As we mentioned previously, Staff Pick Premieres is a boon to the short film industry. It not only further legitimizes the online route for distributing short films, but also strengthens an already venerable platform for careers of up-and-coming directors (as well as established ones, such as Danny DeVito and the Safdie brothers, whose films were both selected as Staff Pick Premieres).
"Getting a Staff Pick gives my film the kind of new and diverse audience I couldn't have reached on my own," said filmmaker Zachary Zezima, whose short It's a Date was selected this month as a Staff Pick Premiere. "It's also a badge of honor and a form of validation that helps me to continue making independent films."
November’s schedule is as follows (synopses courtesy of Vimeo):
Burnout (dir. Miguel Lopez Valdivia)
Burnout is the portrait of a paramedic and his relationship with death. A duel between the deep pleasure that gives him the adrenaline when he turns on the siren, and the emotional weariness from being the witness of countless tragedies.
About the Filmmaker: Miguel Lopez Valdivia graduated from Universidad Iberoamericana in Mexico City, a school where filmmakers such as Alejandro González Iñárritu, Guillermo Arriaga, Carlos Carrera and Michel Franco among many others attended. Burnout, his latest short film, was part of the official selection at Sheffield Doc/Fest 2016. He's currently developing his first feature.
It’s a Date (dir. Zachary Zezima)
Based on a true story, this 2D animated narrative from Zachary Zezima details the strange and absurd qualities that you try to keep to yourself during a first date.
About the Filmmaker: Zachary Zezima is an animator and illustrator from New York, currently based in Los Angeles. He received his MFA in Experimental Animation from CalArts and is a co-founder of Circle Line Projects. This is his second Staff Pick.
The First Men (dir. Benjamin Kegan)
An overextended teacher bumps into a troubled student while at the mall with her mom. Based on the Pushcart Prize-winning short story by Stacey Richter.
About the Filmmaker: Benjamin Kegan is a New York-based filmmaker with an MFA in film from Columbia University. Ben’s previous short films and documentaries have screened at several international film festivals including, SXSW, TriBeCa, and BFI London.
Available November 16
The Incident (dir. Josh and Benny Safdie)
Filmmaker James Toback recounts his bouts with literary lion Norman Mailer.
About the Filmmakers: Festival darling filmmakers Josh and Benny Safdie have a written and directed an acclaimed roster of films Heaven Knows What, Daddy Longlegs, and The Pleasure of Being Robbed; they are currently in post-production on Good Time, starring Robert Pattinson and Jennifer Jason Leigh. Their short The Black Balloon was a Vimeo Staff Pick.
Available November 23
The Procedure (dir. Calvin Reeder)
A surprise medical procedure comes with rather unexpected, scatological results.
About the Filmmakers: Calvin Reeder began his film career while employed as a construction worker in Seattle, Washington. Since then, his bizarre and unsettling films have earned him many awards, including the Short Film Jury Award in U.S Fiction for The Procedure at Sundance 2016.
Available November 30