The opening night of the Hollyshorts Film Festival was August 11th and we attended the Celebrity Suites LA gifting lounge, red carpet screenings at Arclight Cinemas, and after-party at former Social Nightclub. This film fest showcases the best short films from around the globe over a week’s time of screenings, industry panels, and networking events. The films included projects by students, up & coming filmmakers, and established celebs such as Jennifer Aniston (Room 10), Kate Hudson (Cutlass), and Rachel Weisz (The Thief).
The day started off with a gifting lounge that included a portrait studio for visiting celebs and filmmakers courtesy or Rico Mejia Photography and a social media center and interview booth where we got the inside scoop! Fashion Forwards provided gifting through their European designers and dressed many film/TV stars for the red carpet. Featured fashion included dresses by Olena Dats and Ohara, classic sunglasses by Emmanuelle Khanh and trendy shades by Nunettes , watches by Wize & Ope, belts and corsets by Doria Salambo, and themed t-shirts by Lotty Dotty and much more. Not to mention there were makeup and hair stylists on hand to give celebs the red carpet treatment, a DJ spinning tunes to keep the party going, pastries by Garden of Cherubs, and an open bar courtsey of Leblon (Brazil’s #1 craft Cachaca- made from fresh sugarcane juice!). My favorite was their signature drink The Caipirinha… I mean, who doesn’t love a liquer named after an upscale seaside town in Rio de Janiero, it certainly made the party feel like a day at the beach!
Then we were off to the red carpet to speak with filmmakers and celebrities alike. We spoke with the cast of the new Lionsgate funded up-coming pilot The Cynical Life of Harper Hall, long-time Hollyshorts supporter actor Kevin Davitian (of Borat), actors Terry Chen and Elias Koteas of ABC’s Combat Hospital, actor Shawn Hatosy of NBC/TNT’s Southland, actor Jon Huertas of ABC’s Castle, Millionaire Matchmakers’ Rachel Federoff and Destin Plaff (who also star in the festival’s short Sushi Girl), and Producer/Actor Eli Roth (of Inglourious Basterds), to name a few! We had the chance to hear about some of the shorts in the festival and watch the opening night trailers. Some of our favorite contenders (out of over 300 screenings) include Sugartown, Pillow Talk, First Dates, Edge of Sanity, Closing Time, How to Eat Bacon, Seven Layer Dip, Blood Traffic, The Blue Wall, Me and the Chef, Seymour Sally Rufus, My Undeadly, Karl Dahl and the Golden Cube, and Shuffle, all showing throughout the week. For a full list of showtimes check the schedule of screenings at Hollyshorts.
Returning to host the festival for the third year in a row is host/actor Ben Lyons (of Access Hollywood) who MC’d the opening night festivities with his usual humor and charm. The evening wrapped up with a party back at Social that sported a packed house of international filmmakers and festival supporters. The rest of the week will prove which short films take home the top prizes and have the best chance of being turned into feature film/TV projects as with past winners. The festival runs until August 18th with screenings in the Hollywood area. Don’t miss your chance to see why this festival attracts more than 7,000 attendees each year!