Shortsfest welcomes award winners
Paul Haggis and Jason Reitman, filmmakers with recent awards to their respective credit, will make appearances at next month’s Aspen Shortsfest.
The 15th annual Shortsfest, presented by Aspen Filmfest, is set for April 5-9 with events in Aspen and Carbondale.
Haggis, who earned Academy Awards for best picture and best original screenplay for “Crash,” will participate in the program MasterWorks: In the Director’s Chair. Haggis, who made his directorial debut with “Crash” and who earned another Oscar a year ago for his adapted screenplay for “Million Dollar Baby,” will join Tom McCarthy (“The Station Agent”), brothers Mark and Michael Polish (“Twin Falls Idaho,” “Northfork”) and Peter Segal (“Anger Management,” “The Longest Yard”) in the event. The program, moderated by Frank Pierson, screenwriter of “Cool Hand Luke” and “Dog Day Afternoon,” will use clips from “Dog Day Afternoon” of offer insight into the art of filmmaking.
Reitman, who earned the Breakout Filmmaker Award at the U.S. Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen last week, will be the subject of the Director Spotlight conversation April 7. Reitman earned the award for his directorial debut, “Thank You for Smoking,” a satire of the tobacco industry, which will have a Shortsfest screening April 9. Reitman, the son of filmmaker Ivan Reitman (“Ghost Busters,” “Stripes”), is a two-time winner of Shortsfest’s Best Short award – for “Consent” in 2004 and for “In God We Trust” in 2000.
Reitman will also be on the jury for Shortsfest’s International Competition. Joining him on the jury will be cinematographer John Bailey (“The Producers”), director Patricia Cardoso (“Real Women Have Curves”) and Bob Denerstein, film critic for the Rocky Mountain News. The competition will feature films from work filmmakers from more than 40 countries submitted.
Aspen director Bob Rafelson (“Mountains of the Moon,” “Five Easy Pieces”) will return to present part two of the talk, Confessions of a Filmmaker, on April 6. ScreenPlay!, the Shortsfest family program, will present a program of films for audiences 10 and older on April 9. Other Shortsfest events include the Lounge Acts series of professional seminars and CineCafe, moderated roundtable discussions with filmmakers.
The complete Shortsfest 2006 program will be available online at http://www.aspenfilm.org Friday. Tickets go on sale March 29 at the Wheeler Opera House box office and at Sounds Easy in Carbondale.
Stewart Oksenhorn’s e-mail address is email@example.com
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Aspen School District’s younger students will return to class next week, but that’s not the case for those in the seventh through 12th grade, who will continue to take courses from home.