Fri, May 25, 2012 - Page 13 News List

Short attention span? No problem

Sunday’s Future Shorts ‘pop up festival’ offers a provocative lineup of films from around the world

By Catherine Shu  /  Staff reporter

Directors whose films have been featured in Future Shorts’ current and past programs include Spike Jonze, David O’Reilly and Sam Taylor-Wood.

Photo courtesy of Future Shorts and Gergely Imreh

Taipei’s edition of the Future Shorts film festival will have its biggest screening yet on Sunday at the National Taiwan University.

Founded in 2003, the Future Shorts label bills itself as “the largest short film network in the world.” Anyone can become part of its global distribution network by contacting Future Shorts in London and organizing a “pop up film festival” in their city.

Taipei organizer Gergely Imreh first heard of Future Shorts last summer, but he did not feel like he could pull off an event in Taipei. While co-running Ignite Taipei, however, Imreh says he was motivated by participants in the public speaking event.

“The feedback I got was that you can do whatever you want to do,” says Imreh. He figured out a time and venue and emailed Future Shorts in January. Just two weeks later, Imreh hosted Future Shorts first Taipei event at Insomnia, a cafe near Shida night market.

Future Short’s Taipei premiere drew more than 60 attendees, but Imreh says figuring out a promotional strategy has been a challenge. The festival’s Taipei co-organizers rely on Facebook, publicity flyers and word-of-mouth. Imreh hopes that this Sunday’s screening will help the event generate enough attention so he can bring all future programs (there is a new one each season) of Future Shorts to Taiwan.

“Watching a short film is a completely different experience than watching a feature-length film,” says Imreh. “We have to show people in Taiwan what is a short film and why they should be interested in it. That’s the thing we haven’t figured out, but we are on our way there.”

The spring program, which screens this Sunday, includes seven short films made by Australian, American, Danish, French and UK filmmakers. All are loosely tied together by the theme of “relationships.”

Festival Notes

What: Future Shorts Film Festival

When and where: Starts 7pm on Sunday at the National Taiwan University Institute of Applied Mechanics Building’s International Conference Hall (台灣大學應用力學館國際會議廳), 170, Xinhai Rd Sec 2, Taipei City

Admission: Tickets are NT$200 and can be booked in advance at Restricted to adults aged 18 and over

On the Net:

The films are all under 20 minutes in length, but contain plenty of ideas to mull over.

Imreh predicts that L’homme sans tete (The Man Without a Head), a 2003 French film by Argentinean director Juan Solanas that has won accolades for its lush visual styling, will become the crowd favorite on Sunday despite its surreal story line.

“It’s really majestic. It is made to touch people’s feelings with this universe where there is a man and a woman, and they love each other, but they have to find each other first,” says Imreh.

Another film, The Arm by US filmmakers Brie Larson, Sarah Ramos and Jessie Ennis, follows two teens that start a courtship via cell phone texts. “You see the way people currently interact with one another, and how completely differently the ‘Facebook generation’ is from people even just 10 years ago,” says Imreh.

Quadrangle, which was made in 2010 by US filmmaker Amy Grappell, is a documentary about two couples, including Grappell’s parents, who were part of a group marriage during the early 1970s.

Quadrangle “feels very long all the way until the whole thing comes together and then it gives an amazing insight into a unique family’s life,” says Imreh. “In a way, you start to look at your own family’s life as well.”

For more information about the other short films on Sunday’s Future Shorts program, check out

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