By: Isa Goldberg
Thirty five years ago, the Asbury Shorts Film Concert was just a fledgling effort, a dream to celebrate a genre, which much like TV commercials, can take days of planning, shooting and reshooting before anything even reaches the cutting room table. Then, gosh! Who knows what will happen next. While starting a business in TV commercial production, Doug LeClaire developed a fascination with shorts for their ability to achieve purity through brevity. “Even though they’re over with quickly, these films create long lasting impressions,” he observed, impressions that stayed with him long after the movie ended.
Others who shared his romance with film shorts, such as Peter Gallagher, Bob Balaban and Edie Falco, appeared in some of those films, shown early in the festivals history. They also hosted the events, and helped sustain the vitality of a form that Hollywood had largely overlooked.
Today, Asbury Shorts is New York City’s longest running, noncompetitive short film exhibition. On November 4th, 2016 at 7:30pm, the festival will celebrate its 35th Anniversary at The NYIT Auditorium on Broadway in Manhattan. Screening classic shorts from past years mixed with new global festival winners, the evening provides a rare opportunity for the public to view world-class films in one sitting…on a real cinema screen…as opposed to You Tube, smart phones or computers. Serving as Master of Ceremonies Ken Dashow, the hugely popular drive time DJ on Q104.3 FM Classic Rock Radio, returns. Highlights from the November 4th line-up include:
“Drawcard” > A new comedy short film from director Antonio Oreña-Barlin of Australia. This film recently won the “People’s Choice Award” at the hugely popular Los Angeles Comedy Shorts Festival. An office worker fouls up a practical joke in epic fashion and it might end up costing him his job.
“Love at First Sight” > Famed film & theater actors John Hurt and Phyllida Law star in this international film festival hit from Michael Davies of the United Kingdom. Two elderly residents of an assisted living facility literally fall in love for the first time every 24 hours. This short was awarded the coveted “Audience Choice” honor at The Aspen Shorts Festival in Colorado.
“Tulip” > Academy Award Nominee for Best Live Action Short Film in 2001. Acclaimed film and television actor Rachel Griffiths (HBO’s “Six Feet Under”) made her directorial debut with this charming story of a widower, who not only has to live with the grief of losing his wife of 50 years but is now stuck with taking care of her stubborn beloved pet cow.
Asbury Shorts Concerts have been presented at The Museum of Fine Arts Boston, Royal Festival Hall in London, Lake Shore Theater in Chicago, The AERO Theatre in Los Angeles, The Vero Beach Museum of Art, The Director’s Guild Theater in Manhattan, Visions Cinema in D.C., SUMMER STAGE in Central Park and the Leminski Theater in Berlin, to name a few of the prestigious venues where audiences have enjoyed the world’s best short films.
Academy Award nominated director Jason Reitman (“JUNO ”, “Up in the Air ”, “Thank You for Smoking ”, “Young Adult ”) has called Asbury Shorts, “The best short film show I’ve ever seen!”
The NYIT Auditorium on Broadway is located at 1871 Broadway in Manhattan (between W61 and 62nd Streets.) General admission tickets cost $15 and can be reserved by visiting: