There was a record 4,385 short films submitted for the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival, and only 57 were chosen, including 36 world premieres. The sheer number of inclusions is enough to make those champions stand up and cheer. Of the selected shorts, 40 percent were directed by women. There are 10 distinct competition programs consisting of five narratives, four documentary and, for the second year, one animated program. In addition, there is the Sports Shorts program as part of the 11th annual Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival. The Shorts program runs April 19-30.
“It’s wonderful to have shorts from such diverse countries like Iran, Venezuela and South Korea to complement the American short films,” said Sharon Badal, vice president of Filmmaker Relations and Shorts Programming. “This year’s shorts programs are evidence that storytelling has no boundaries, and creativity is global.”
Some of the celebrity talent in front and behind the camera includes Bobby Cannavale, Salma Hayek, John Turturro, Jim Sheridan, two-time Academy Award winner for Visual Effects Paul Franklin (“Interstellar”), Elisabeth Moss, marine life artist Wyland and visual artist Chris Burkard.
Here are our selections that should not be missed at the 16th annual Tribeca Film Festival Short Film Festival.
“11th Hour,” directed by Jim Sheridan, written by Jim Sheridan and Oskar Slingerland. Based on a true story, “11th Hour” recounts how, on the evening of 9/11, Maria José’s bar is heaving with locals united in grief and a building rage; a cop pulls his gun when a surprise visitor enters. In English and Spanish with subtitles. Starring Salma Hayek, Jiménez de Pinault.
“Joy Joy Nails,” directed and written by Joey Ally. Sarah manages Joy Joy Nails with a cheerful iron fist, but she gets her manicured claws out when Mia, a manicurist trainee, looks to be stealing the boss’s son’s affections. In English, Korean, Mandarin with subtitles.
“The World in Your Window,” directed and written by Zoe McIntosh. Squeezed into a tiny Caravan, 8-year-old Jesse and his grief-stricken father are in limbo until an accidental friendship with a V8-driving transsexual unlocks the means for Jesse to liberate his father and himself.
“Big City,” directed by Jordan Bond and Lachlan Ryan, written by Jordan Bond. Vijay, a lonely taxi driver, picks up Chris, a stray drunk who befriends him, and over the course of the night, Chris experiences some of Vijay’s troubles and Vijay learns to see the city in a new light.
“The Suitcase,” directed and written by Abi Damaris Corbin. The ordinary life of a Boston-bred baggage handler is turned upside down when he steals a suitcase that contains terrorist plans. Inspired by true events on 9/11.
“For Flint,” directed by Brian Schulz, written by Brian Schulz, Sharika Ajaikumar and Katharina Stroh. In the face of a federal emergency deeming its drinking water unsafe for consumption, Flint’s resilient citizens rally together to forge a new narrative that is hopeful and optimistic.
“Blues Planet: Triptych,” directed and written by Wyland. Explores the Gulf Oil Spill disaster and its aftermath through environmental artist Wyland who, along with 30 of today’s pre-eminent artists, recorded a new genre of global blues on the catastrophe’s anniversary.
Animated Shorts, curated by Whoopi Goldberg, returns with a selection of imaginative storytelling in animation. Screening this year:
“Dear Basketball,” directed by Glen Keane, written by Kobe Bryant
“Curpigeon,” directed and written by Dmitry Milkin
“Summer Camp Island,” directed and written by Julia Pott
“Odd Is an Egg,” directed by Kristin Ulseth, written by Maria Avramova and Kristin Ulseth
“Angel,” directed and written by Gregory Casares
“The Talk: True Stories About the Birds and the Bees,” directed and written by Alain Delannoy
“Second to None,” directed and written by Vincent Gallagher
“Escape,” directed by Limbert Fabian, Brandon Oldenburg, written by Limbert Fabian, Brandon Oldenburg and Angus McGilpin