By Maureen Breslin
The short film ‘Merrow’ by Baz Black took home the top prize at a Galway film festival last week.
Judges at the The Shot by the Sea event, which took place online, awarded ‘Merrow’ the Spirit of the Festival as it “really had all elements to represent the festival”, according to event organiser Teresa Lavina.
Since 2019, Shot by the Sea, which was founded in Galway, has brought together filmmakers with the challenge of creating a 6 minute short film. The film can be animation, drama, or documentary. Its most important requirement is that your film is recorded by an ocean or seaside setting.
Usually, guests and those who submit their short films come from all over the world to attend the film festival. It is typically hosted at the Salthill Hotel as a gala-style event. This year, due to COVID-19 restrictions, the festival was hosted over Zoom.
Despite the ongoing challenges presented by the pandemic, there was no shortage on submissions. Teresa further explains the details of this year’s participation: “we had plenty of submissions. About 50 Irish submissions and over 650 international submissions eligible for the festival.”
The event, which also premiered on YouTube, generated a lot of attention. The video has, so far, received almost 900 views since it aired earlier this week. You can watch the film festival below.
The event is presented in partnership with the Galway 2020 Small Towns Big Ideas project. It is also supported by The Village Salthill. It has been going strong for two years.
Going forward, Teresa hopes that the festival will be able to be presented live.
“Definitely, a live festival is much better, the atmosphere is amazing and the filmmakers can share their emotions. Plus, they can network with other filmmakers,” she said.