Winners of the Second Annual SMPTE-HPA Student Film Festival Announced

Film Festival Held During SMPTE 2016 Annual Technical Conference & Exhibition (SMPTE 2016) Featured 24 Official Selections From Around the World

LOS ANGELES — Oct. 27, 2016 — The Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers® (SMPTE®), the organization whose standards work has supported a century of technological advances in entertainment technology, and the Hollywood Professional Association (HPA®), the organization serving the professional media creation and finishing community, have announced the winners of the second annual SMPTE-HPA Student Film Festival. 

Held on Wednesday, Oct. 26, at the Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood, California, following the Oktoberfest Reception for the SMPTE 2016 Annual Technical Conference & Exhibition (SMPTE 2016), the film festival showcased submissions demonstrating creative uses of technology in storytelling. SMPTE and the HPA received over 250 submissions from more than 46 countries, and the 24 official selections shown during SMPTE 2016 represented Brazil, Canada, France, Hong Kong, Iran, Ireland, Israel, New Zealand, Slovakia, Turkey, the U.K., and the U.S.

The event was hosted by Howard Lukk, SMPTE director of engineering and standards, who is also a film director. The official selections at the Festival were screened in SMPTE-DCP format, courtesy of Sundog Media Toolkit. Five films earned awards in the following categories:

Best Creative Use of Entertainment Technology to Engage the Audience in the Story — Animated Short
• "The Graveyard Shift" by Lara Arikan of Ringling College of Art and Design (Sarasota, Florida, U.S.)

Best Creative Use of Entertainment Technology to Engage the Audience in the Story — Live-Action Short
• "Bug Killer" by Unggyu Choi of School of the Visual Arts (New York, U.S.)

Best Use of Mobile Device or Tablet to Convey a Story — Narrative Short
• "ISMS" by Jayden Gillespie of Canyon Crest Academy (San Diego, U.S.)

Best Use of Virtual Reality in Storytelling — Narrative Short
• "Rhapsody" by CHAN Ming Chun of Hong Kong Design Institute (Tiu Keng Wan, Hong Kong)

The Audience Choice Award was a three-way tie:
• "At the Game: An RIT Hockey Experience" by Anna Dining of Rochester Institute of Technology (Rochester, New York, U.S.)
• "Rhapsody" by CHAN Ming Chun of Hong Kong Design Institute (Tiu Keng Wan, Hong Kong)
• "Unmasked" by Christina Faraj and Alice Gavish of School of the Visual Arts (New York, U.S.)

The student filmmakers of the winning selections received awards as well as prizes courtesy of Avid, Blackmagic Design, and ICG Magazine, the publication of the International Cinematographer's Guild. Filmmaker information and trailers are available at

VR selections were screened with viewers provided by Google and Unofficial Cardboard.

"The wealth of entries for this year's festival was inspiring," said Seth Hallen, HPA president. "The work was outstanding and imaginative, and it is wonderful to see entries from students from a wide array of global educational institutions. Our jurors faced quite a difficult challenge choosing winners from the high caliber of submissions we received. As the festival screenings demonstrated, it was an excellent and competitive field, and one that included the first high school student to win a category! Looking at these entries, winners, and nominees, I am eager to continue enjoying the great works these budding young artists have in store for us as their careers unfold." 

The Jurors for this year's festival featured a diverse group of accomplished professionals from around the world. They included Elisa Bonora, ACE, an editor and producer whose credits include multiple Emmy®-nominated documentaries; David S. Cohen, digital features director at Variety; Ben Gervais, a productions systems supervisor currently serving as technical lead for production and postproduction for Ang Lee's "Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk"; Dorian Harris, ACE, a film and television editor who recently edited the pilot of "11.22.63"; Bryan Hillestad, a professional character animator and an animation supervisor whose diverse credits include the 2016 blockbuster "Deadpool"; Katie Hinsen, a senior finishing artist at Light Iron New York and founder of the Blue Collar Post Collective (BCPC); and Niven Howie, ACE, editor of commercials, pop videos, and feature films, including Sting's "Ten Summoner's Tales," XTC's "Dear God," and the features "Dawn of the Dead" (2004) and "The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy" (2005). 

The jury also included Nancy Jundi, a data scientist for the entertainment, technology, and SaaS industries; Patricia Keighley, senior vice president of IMAX Corporation and co-founder and managing director of IMAX POST/DKP Inc.; Mark Kenna, the CEO of U.K.-based Bad Blood Films and a film sound consultant; Dean Lyon, a producer, director, and visual effects (VFX) supervisor whose VFX credits include the "Lord of Rings" trilogy and "Without a Paddle"; Chris Nienow, a member of the core team that formed Unofficial Cardboard during the launch of Google Cardboard at Google I/O 2014; Stewart Schill, ACE, an ACE Eddie Award-nominated writer, director, and editor whose editing credits for television include the limited series "The People vs. OJ Simpson," "American Horror Story," and "Dexter"; Matisse Tolin, virtual reality (VR) producer and screenwriter and founder of Lithic VR; and Joachim Zell, vice president of imaging science and technical director at EFILM, where he began the EC3 onset and near-set dailies division.

The SMPTE Annual Technical Conference & Exhibition is the premier annual event for motion-imaging and media technology, production, operations, and the allied arts and sciences. This is the second year that SMPTE and the HPA have hosted a student film festival in conjunction with the SMPTE Annual Technical Conference & Exhibition. Celebrating the Society's 100-year history, SMPTE 2016 will be followed by another special event: the SMPTE Centennial Gala, to be held at the Ray Dolby Ballroom on the evening of Oct. 28.

Information regarding submissions for next year's SMPTE-HPA Student Film Festival will be posted at January 2017.

Further information about SMPTE is available at Additional information about the HPA is available 

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About the Hollywood Professional Association
Hollywood Professional Association (HPA) serves the professional community of businesses and individuals who provide expertise, support, tools, and the infrastructure for the creation and finishing of motion pictures, television, commercials, digital media, and other dynamic media content. Through its partnership with the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers® (SMPTE®), the leader in the advancement of the art, science, and craft of the image, sound, and metadata ecosystem, the HPA continues to extend its support of the community it represents. Information about the HPA is available at 

About the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers® (SMPTE®)
For the past 100 years, the people of the Society of Motion Pictures and Television Engineers (SMPTE, pronounced "simp-tee") have sorted out the details of many significant advances in entertainment technology, from the introduction of "talkies" and color television to HD and UHD (4K, 8K) TV. Since its founding in 1916, the Society has earned an Oscar® and multiple Emmy® Awards for its work in advancing moving-imagery education and engineering across the communications, technology, media, and entertainment industries. The Society has developed thousands of standards, recommended practices, and engineering guidelines, more than 800 of which are currently in force. 

SMPTE's global membership today includes 7,000 members, who are motion-imaging executives, engineers, creative and technology professionals, researchers, scientists, educators, and students. A partnership with the Hollywood Professional Association (HPA®) connects SMPTE and its membership with the professional community of businesses and individuals who provide the expertise, support, tools, and infrastructure for the creation and finishing of motion pictures, television programs, commercials, digital media, and other dynamic media content. Information on joining SMPTE is available at 

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