Much like the hilarious banter of raucous host Feet Banks (one of, if not the most colourful and entertaining ambassador the town of Whistler has), nothing was off limits at the event, as a broad spectrum of subjects showed off the diversity and creativity that Whistler-based filmmakers are brimming with. Highlights included a bloody battle between ski tourers and snowmobilers for backcountry supremacy, a 60 Minutes-style expose on a day in the life of a Sasquatch, Sushi Village’s waitresses rapping about eye-rolling customers, a skier vs snowboarder chase-based video game (which took home the People’s Choice Award) from the supremely creative Jonny Fleet, and an incredibly well done and timely story on the pitfalls of social media addiction from Angie Nolan, who at long last deservingly emerged as Best of Show in her 10th time competing in the event.
Hats off to the winners and all of the filmmakers for another great year of the Olympus 72Hr Filmmaker Showdown. For more on the event and winning videos, be sure to check out the press release from WSSF below, and if you're within striking distance of Whistler, don't you dare miss the next event on the docket, tonight's Pro Photographer Showdown. —JEFF SCHMUCK
Snow Game Steals The Crowd Winning People’s Choice Award
WHISTLER, BC – April 14, 2016 – Last night at the World Ski & Snowboard Festival (WSSF) in Whistler, over 1500+ people gathered in the Whistler Conference Centre to witness the art of filmmaking in its purest form. Angie Nolan won the 15th installment of the signature OLYMPUS 72Hr Filmmaker Showdown with their film, Control Shift. Jonny Fleet won the hearts of the audience and the People’s Choice award with their film, Snow Game.
Over 30 teams participated in the event this year, all tasked with filming, editing and producing a three to five minute short film within 100km of Whistler over the course of 72 hours. To level the playing field and ensure fairness, a surprise prop must be incorporated for a minimum of five consecutive seconds. This year the prop was a handheld mirror.
Angie Nolan is no stranger to the OLYMPUS 72Hr Filmmaker Showdown. Having previously competed 10 times and making her way into finals five times, Nolan and her film were introduced as “local heroes” by host Feet Banks. Control Shift acutely questions society’s dependence on technology, specifically smart phones. The film begins with two characters in what some would describe as a cubical office nightmare. While the two young employees share a desk, they do not communicate verbally. Rather, they are completely consumed by their smart phones and human interaction is replaced with sending each other selfies and liking photos. As they prepare to part ways and retire for the evening, a strange light catches their attention and they are instantly drawn to it. The strange light is the reflection of a handheld mirror hanging on the wall which ends up being a mysterious portal to an alternative reality. A reality free from society’s dependence on technology, where humans interact with other humans without the aid of smart phones. Slowly, the two employees begin to realize that there is more to life than technology.
Nolan and her team took home the grand prize of over $10,000 in cash and prizing in addition to the coveted title of Best of Show. They also earned an additional $5,000 for exclusively using Olympus equipment to shoot their film. Fleet walked away with $1,000 and the bragging rights associated with the People’s Choice Award.
More information on the OLYMPUS 72Hr Filmmaker Showdown at WSSF is available at wssf.com/Olympus-72-Hour-Filmmaker-Showdown
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