The votes are in and short film, Amendment has tied for the Mitten Movie Project's "best film of 2011"–not too shabby for a first-time feature filmmaker.
“It’s a good feeling, knowing that you’re captivating somebody, holding their attention,” Nahas said. “Hopefully they can come out of there feeling something from the film. And I think when you get the tears, you’ve accomplished that.”
Local filmmakers and supporters gathered at the in Royal Oak Tuesday to compete for the title of the best of the Mitten Movie Project in 2011.
The 11 films vying for top recognition were . Each was selected as the audience favorite. The top film from each month goes on to compete for the title of the year’s best.
Two hundred people were in attendance at the event on Tuesday. Selected audience members were chosen to be judges along with independent filmmakers.
After all films were shown, Mitten Movie Project Curator Connie Mangilin announced the winners at an afterglow at in Royal Oak. For the first time, it was announced that two films had tied for the honor of best film of 2011.
Amendment, created by Macomb Township resident Tom Nahas, is a tearjerker about a man struggling with the death of his young daughter, who crosses paths with a young girl coping with the death of her father.
Production for Amendment began in November of 2010 and continued sporadically over seven months. It in June of 2011 and was named audience favorite at the Mitten Movie Project in August.
Tying Amendment for the best of 2011 was The Zombie Factor, a spoof of reality shows and zombie movies. It was named as audience favorite in November as part of the . The Zombie Factor was created by Rochester resident Matt Cantu.
“I was really happy," Cantu said of his win. "There was a bunch of awesome films tonight. It’s just great to be able to rise to the top; to compete against 11 other films and get to the top.”
Amendment also took home first place awards for best cinematography, best sound and best actor Mike Coakley. The film's second place honors included best actress Lilliana Nahas, best locations, best editing and a tie for best directing. It received a third place nod for best art design.
“I think it’s a great avenue to get your stuff shown," said Amendment Producer Phil Lupo of the Mitten Movie Project. "It’s actually just an honor to be here with ten other great movies. Just to be in the final showing was just an honor. We had excellent filmmaking judges and it’s an honor that they picked our film. It’s awesome. It’s a good feeling.”
Curator Connie Mangilin said the Mitten Movie Project is an excellent networking opportunity for local filmmakers.
“The Mitten Movie Project provides a venue for independent filmmakers to actually watch their short and get real live audience feedback," Mangilin said.
The Mitten Movie Project’s 2012 season kicks off on January 3, 2012 at the Main Art Theatre. Most of the short films have already been selected and the audience will once again be asked to select their favorite, which will then place it in the running for the best of 2012.
For more information visit the Mitten Movie Project’s Facebook page: www.facebook.com/mittenmovieproject