The long and short on Shortsfest |

The long and short on Shortsfest

Stewart OksenhornAspen, CO Colorado
Aspen Shortsfest will feature Guide Dog, a sequel to the Oscar-nominated Guard Dog, by perennial Shortsfest favorite Bill Plympton. (Courtesy Aspen Film/Bill Plympton)

ASPEN Aspen Films 16th annual Aspen Shortsfest, set for April 1-8, will feature a look at French short films, the Local Filmmakers Showcase, presentations on editing and low-budget filmmaking, a kids-friendly program, and screening programs at the Wheeler Opera House in Aspen and Crystal Theatre in Carbondale.Shortsfests International Competition will feature 60 short films from some 25 countries. Among the highlights are documentaries of pioneering animator Norman McLaren, Bolivian female wrestlers, and an Elvis festival in Australia; Room 10, co-directed by Jennifer Aniston and featuring Robin Wright Penn and Kris Kristofferson; Shortsfest regular Bill Plymptons Guide Dog, a sequel to his Oscar-nominated Guard Dog; and Love and War, an opera about love and war told with puppets.The Planet Cinema program New French Shorts will feature eight films from France. The program will be presented by Roger Gonin, program director of the Clement-Ferrand festival, the oldest and largest festival devoted to short films. Other special events include the Masterworks program Clips & Conversation: The Art of Film Editing, featuring four Hollywood film editors; For a Fistful of Dollars … or Less, a look at low-budget filmmaking with director Lewis Teague; and the family program Lights, Camera, Kids.Jurors for the International Competition are directors Cecilia Peck and Adrian Belic, plus Teague and Gonin.Shortsfest opens on Sunday, April 1 with the Local Filmmakers Showcase, with the top prize winner earning a spot in a competition screening program. Eighteen locally submitted works will be screened during the free program at the Wheeler Opera House.The daily programs on Monday through Friday, April 3-7, begin with a Filmmaker Lounge at 9 a.m. at the Mountain Chalet. The free sessions offer discussions on such topics as the impact of cultural perspective on filmmaking, new outlets for short film distribution and exhibition, new tools and techniques for HD moviemaking, Colorado Film Commission incentives for shooting your next film in Colorado and more.Tickets for the film programs are $12 and go on sale to the public March 27 at the Wheeler Box Office in Aspen (for the Aspen and Carbondale shows) and at Sounds Easy in Carbondale (for the Carbondale shows). Doors open 30 minutes before each program. A ticket guarantees a seat until 10 minutes before show time; if an event sells out, unclaimed seats may be released.For a full program schedule, go to