Short, but with lots of impact

2015-04-30 14:46
Birdman, directed by Tamboerskloof’s Robert Nicholls, is a three-minute documentary about ex-circus performer and animal trainer Elliot Cagnu who had been honing his “bird show” for years. 


Birdman, directed by Tamboerskloof’s Robert Nicholls, is a three-minute documentary about ex-circus performer and animal trainer Elliot Cagnu who had been honing his “bird show” for years. PHOTO: Supplied

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Eight local short films have ­made it on to the shortlist of Cinema Nouveau’s inaugural Short Film Project.

Launched in September last year, the competition attracted a total of 124 entries from around the country.

Lola Gallant, brand manager of Cinema Nouveau, explains that as the country’s only “art-house” cinema chain, the company launched the Short Film Project to show its commitment to the growth of local cinema.

The ten shortlisted films will be screened as the “supporting act” to the main feature film at the four Cinema Nouveau theatres in Johannesburg, Pretoria, Durban and Cape Town until Friday 29 May.

Birdman, by Tamboerskloof’s Robert Nicholls, will be screened with Inherent vice.

CBD’s David Meinert is the director behind Run Jose which is being screened with Saint Laurent.

The Christmas gift by Johannesburg’s Timothy Argall will be screened with Dear white people from Friday. Fortabt (Loss of love) by Tamboerskloof’s Benitha Vlok will be screened with Far from the madding crowd from Thursday 30 April.

Also releasing on Thursday 30 April is Endless, directed by Wood­stock’s Robert McEwan, which will be on screen alongside Serial (bad) weddings.

Woodstock resident Kelsey Egan’s short film 21th Street will be screened with Lullaby from Friday 8 May and The grave digger by Randburg’s Quean Groenewald will be released with Little chaos on Friday 15 May.

Ashes in the earth, directed by Sara Gouveia and Kofi Zwana from Gardens, will be screened with Infinitely polar bear from Friday 22 May. True Jose by Tamboerskloof’s Mandla Shonhiwa will be screened with A most violent year.

The last release is In foreign transit – India, directed by Gardens’ Dewald Brand. The film will be screened with Serena from Friday 29 May.

Spectrum, who has partnered with Cinema Nouveau in this project, has spent time with each filmmaker to assist them with the post-production process. In addition, the Spectrum team has transferred the shortlisted films into the required digital format so they are compatible with the upgraded digital projection systems installed in all cinemas last year.

Following the screening period, the films will be judged by a panel of industry experts to select the overall winner of this year’s Short Film Project.

The winning director receives ­Sony camera equipment to the ­value of R20 000, and attendance at the Durban International Film Festival, where the winning film will be screened.

The public are also invited to vote for their favourite short film, after viewing the shortlisted entries at a Cinema Nouveau theatre. The film that receives the most votes in the Audience Choice Award will also receive a screening at the Durban festival.


The winning films will be announced at an event at Cinema Nouveau during June. For more information and screening details, visit

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