Film Festivals Go Virtual

Oolite Arts, a Miami- based visual arts space and creative learning center leading the South Florida contemporary scene, commissioned 12 short works by based Miami filmmakers while in quarantine for a unique micro-film festival.

Oolites Arts gave Miami filmmakers a concise commission: Create a film limited to three minutes long – in a fortnight – restricted to resources available during the quarantine. The result, Close Quarters Commissions, an online, micro-film festival that demonstrates Miami’s filmmakers’ creativity in trying times and tight spaces.

“We wanted to encourage filmmakers to keep working and help them to continue,” said Jason Fitzroy Jeffers, Oolite’s cinematic arts manager to WLRN.

Utilizing disadvantaged supplies and only their residence and surrounding area as a backdrop, the producer tackled pointed topics in three- minute narratives. These 12 filmmakers worked with minimal pigment to paint the boundless, far-reaching subject matter: working from home to the hardships of unemployment; these filmmakers captured the substance of our new normal.

“We don’t know how long COVID and social distancing will be with us. But we do know that as a community, we need the arts to help us process all that is going on,” said Dennis Scholl, president and CEO of Oolite Arts to Culture Crusaders.

“New Normal,” the jury selected winning film by Frantzy Moreau, a director with 12 years of experience, provides a narrative from the perspective of young adults in America during the pandemic. Moreau provides insight to iPulse about his artistic influences and personal experiences during the pandemic, inspiring the short film.

What influenced you to get into film?

“Every morning before school, I watched cartoons and anime and wanted to be a cartoonist. Then as I began loving storytelling so much, I started writing short stories, long stories. At 15 (I) started filming with my friend’s camcorder. Then at 16, starting making videos with a digital recorder, and so on and so forth.”

How has your personal experience with pandemic inspired your short film?

“It has inspired it a lot, from the simple mistake of forgetting to wear a mask being such a routine now to the idea of job loss, gov checks, staying home and what people will do to get by during a world crisis.”

If you could extend the runtime of your film, what would you change or add?

“Absolutely, there’s a lot I would add. Specifically, to what the characters would have to do next with the dead body in the house. It can go so many ways and create an interesting conflict.

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