Encounters 2018 Award Winners!

And the winning films from this year’s Encounters are…

The Brief Encounters Grand Prix winner was commended for its ‘agonizingly tense narrative, arresting visual style, brilliant directing and stellar naturalistic performances.’  An innocent game gone wrong, Fauve was commended for its naturalistic acting and stunning cinematography.


Taking home the Animated Encounters Grand Prix, Wildebeest tells the highly observant story of a couple on safari.  The film was awarded the prize as it was written with a great of sense of humour and it was evident that the directors had crafted the characters with respect and love.


The Immersive Encounters Grand Prix Award was won by the French directors Philippe A Colin and Clement Leotard for Kinoscope, a VR experience immersing the spectator into a lively and colourful universe to discover the history of cinema lead by the voice of the Hollywood legend Dean Tavoularis. Special mentions were awarded to I Saw the Future by François Vautier for its skilled use of ‘translation of archive material into an epic and futuristic experience’, and Underwood by Geena Gasser for the ‘level of ambition and craftsmanship on display’.


The Chris Collins Live Action Best of British Award was awarded to Three Centimetres by Lara Zeidan, with the jury commenting on the film being ‘skillfully shot in a single, restricted space [and] its genuine, considered and realistic approach to themes of women’s sex and sexuality within a hostile social environment.’


The Children’s Jury Award was judged by the children of Downend School during the festival week and awarded to Departure by Aiofe Doyle for her poignant portrayal of an Irish grandmother’s unexpected departure from her lonely life.


The Teen Jury Award was awarded to Little River Run from director Ed Skrein, with the jurors saying, ‘this film tackles themes of grievance, societal perceptions and stereotypes whilst throwing us curveballs right until the very end. It was personal, insightful, and highly relatable for a lot of young people.’


Further awards included the Animated Best of British Award which went to MARFA, directed by Greg and Myles McLeod who managed to ‘capture the heart and soul of a small Texas town so perfectly’. The Deaf Shorts Award went to Ted Evans for his film, To Know Him.


Voting for the Encounters Audience Award took place throughout the week, with Tungrus by Rishi Chandna taking first place. The film captured audience’s attention with its light hearted story of a family in Mumbai considering eating their hell raising pet rooster so they can reclaim their lives.


Watershed’s DepicT! Awards 2018, which showcases 90 second films from around the world were presented as part of Encounters. Receiving over 500 entries from 59 countries, the winner of the DepicT! British Special Mention Award was Echo (UK) by Aimie Willemse, and the winner of the DepicT! Royal Photographic Society is Traum(a) Novelle (Italy) by Francesco Faralli.


The DepicT! Random Acts Award goes to British film Portrait of a Painter by Euan Gilmour. The jurors stated that the film, ‘successfully packs three acts into 90 seconds which is quite an achievement. Very complete and very spooky; it’s the perfect embodiment of Channel 4’s Random Acts.’


This main DepicT! Award went to another Russian film Head Over Heels by Leonid Grigurko that jurors felt was ‘beautifully choreographed, making imaginative and physical use of the camera within a set frame. We also loved the young protagonist’s complete sense of freedom as she launches into space. Anything is possible.’


The festival, which is the UK’s leading short film festival featured animated and live action short films from around the world. Over 216 nominated filmmakers attended the festival to see their films on the silver screen and take part in industry events and screenings.