Login and Vote as Miami International Film Festival’s Student Film Competition “CinemaSlam” Returns

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Festival Contact:
Danny Diaz
Phone: +1 305-389-8986

MDC Contact:
Juan Mendieta
Phone: +1 305-237-7611

For Immediate Release:
January 3rd, 2012


Login and Vote as Miami International Film Festival’s Student Film Competition “CinemaSlam” Returns


MIAMI, FL— Miami International Film Festival (MIFF), produced and presented by Miami Dade College (MDC), announced today that public on-line voting for its annual student film competition “CinemaSlam” would open on January 3rd and run through January 27th, 2012.


Showcasing the works of college-level auteurs in south Florida, the premiere student-film competition crowns the best made-in-south Florida short films created by undergraduate and graduate-film students attending five of the region’s collegiate institutions.  The awards will be presented during the 29th annual edition of the Festival, March 2 – 11th, 2012.


The competition is a part of MIFF’s “Florida Focus” program, which provides local producers and filmmakers an opportunity to exhibit their talent within an international Festival model. Starting on January 3rd and running through January 27th, 2012, the public will be able to help select the three finalists from each school by visiting miff.openfilm.com and rating/voting for their favorite films.


“After the amazing feedback we received last year, we’re excited to bring ‘CinemaSlam’ back,” said MIFF Executive Director Jaie Laplante. “The competition offers the unique opportunity to expose our community to extraordinary films made by local up-and-coming filmmakers and for students to present their work to industry leaders, gaining invaluable feedback and recognition.”


Three films from each school will be selected as “CinemaSlam” finalists in an American Idol-style voting contest, with 50 percent of the score determined by online public voting and 50 percent determined by a select group of faculty member judges. The films, capped at 20-minute running times, represent a mixture of narratives, documentaries, experimental works and animation created.


“It’s amazing the doors that have opened since winning the competition,” said 2011 CinemaSlam winner Bobby Douge, director of the film “Augustus”.  “The film community respects us more. Winning such a prestigious award helped validate our choice in careers and motivate us to continue on our path. The ‘Augustus’ crew is thankful for being a part of CinemaSlam’s first year.”


MIFF’s three-panel jury, composed of local members of the film community, will choose the winning film from each school and the grand prize winner “CinemaSlam Champion”.” Added this year, the jury will select a winner from seven new categories: “Best Comedy,” “Best Drama,” “Best Experimental Documentary or Animation,” “Best Technical Achievement, “Best Actor,” “Best Actress,” and “Best Director,”  “CinemaSlam” Award Winners will be announced at the Tower Theatre on March 5th 2012.


The grand prize winner “CinemaSlam Champion” will be automatically entered in Openfilm’s third annual nationwide “Get It Made” competition and has a chance to win $50,000 in cash and a film finance package paid upon submission, review and acceptance by the Openfilm Advisory Board. Additionally, the winner will receive a MIFF All-Access pass for the 2nd half of the Festival, and in-kind prize.


The “CinemaSlam Champion” will be awarded an original one-off statue, titled “Señor Sol”, created by Miami-based artist Robert McNight. An abstract homage to jazz music of the 50s and South Florida weather, the 6 by 4 inch sculpture was handcrafted using plexiglass. McNight has worked at Zoo Miami as an exhibit designer and hosted numerous exhibits in Miami.


“CinemaSlam” Key Dates & Deadlines:


Submissions Window: November 21st, 2011 – January 2nd, 2012
Online Voting: January 3rd – January 27th, 2012
Finalists Announced: January 31st, 2012
Winners Announced: March 5th, 2012, during the “CinemaSlam” Awards Ceremony of the Miami International Film Festival at the Tower Theater (time TBD).


For more information about “CinemaSlam” and continuous updates, visit miff.openfilm.com  or miff2020.wpengine.com, and like us at facebook.com/CinemaSlam


Miami International Film Festival (MIFF), celebrating its 29th edition on March 2-11, 2012, is considered the preeminent Ibero-American film festival in the U.S. The annual Festival, produced and presented by Miami Dade College, attracts more than 70,000 audience members and more than 400 filmmakers, producers, talent and industry professionals. It is the only major festival housed within a college or university. In the last five years, the Festival has screened films from more than 60 countries, including 300 World, International, North American, U.S. and East Coast Premieres. MIFF’s special focus on Ibero-American cinema have made the Miami International Film Festival a natural gateway for the discovery of Ibero-American talent. Additionally, the Festival offers unparalleled educational opportunities to filmmakers and the community at large. For more, visit miff2020.wpengine.com or call 305-237-MIFF (3456).   Major sponsors of the 2012 Miami International Film Festival include: Lexus, John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Miami Beach Visitors & Convention Authority, FPL, EGEDA, Downtown Development Authority of the City of Miami, Comcast, Miami New Times, The Historic Alfred I. Dupont Building, ABC Management Services, Screen International.  The official headquarter hotel of MIFF 2012 is The Standard Spa, Miami; and the Festival is produced with the support of the Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs and the Cultural Affairs Council, the Miami-Dade County Mayor and Board of County Commissioners.


Miami Dade College has a long and rich history of involvement in the cultural arts, providing South Florida with a vast array of artistic and literary offerings including The Miami Book Fair International, the Florida Center for the Literary Arts, the MDC Live! Performing Arts Series, The MDC Tower Theater Cinema Series, nine visual arts galleries including The Freedom Tower at Miami Dade College and the School of Entertainment and Design Technology, in addition to the renowned Miami International Film Festival. MDC is the largest institution of higher education in the country and is nationally recognized for many of its academic and cultural programs. With an enrollment of more than 174,000 students, MDC is the nation’s top producer of degrees. The college’s eight campuses and outreach centers offer nearly 300 distinct degree programs including several baccalaureate degrees. It has admitted nearly 2 million students since it opened its doors in 1960. More at mdc.edu.