Winners of the SMPTE-HPA Student Film Festival Are Announced

LOS ANGELES—The Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers and the Hollywood Professional Association announced the winners of the third annual SMPTE-HPA Student Film Festival on Monday. The film festival showcased submissions demonstrating creative uses of technology in storytelling. SMPTE and the HPA received 119 submissions from more than 30 countries, and the 17 official selections screened during SMPTE 2017 represented Germany, Hong Kong, the United Kingdom and the United States.

The event was hosted by Howard Lukk, SMPTE director of engineering and standards, who is also a film director, and by Aimée Ricca, SMPTE marketing and communication, who previously worked in cinema. The official selections at the festival were screened in SMPTE-DCP format, courtesy of Sundog Media Toolkit. Eight films earned awards in the following categories:

Innovative Use of Entertainment Technology to Engage the Audience in the Story—Animated Short (tie): “Tom in Couchland” by James Just of Ringling College of Art and Design (Sarasota, Florida, U.S.) “VERGE” by ChingTien Chu of School of Visual Arts (New York, New York, U.S.) Innovative Use of Entertainment Technology to Engage the Audience in the Story — Live-Action Short : “Mind Game” by Weisi Dai of School of Visual Arts (New York, New York, U.S.)

Innovative Use of Technology in an Experimental Short: “Jazz Orgie” by Irina Rubina of Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg (Ludwigsburg, Germany)

Innovative Use of Mobile Device or Tablet to Convey a Story—Narrative Short: “LONDON STRIKE” by Jiranant Kanjanagawin of University of Greenwich (London, U.K.)

Innovative Use of Analog Technologies in a Live Action Narrative Short: “Home” by Vivian Lau of Emerson College (Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.)

Documentary Short With Technology as the Subject Matter: “Baylor VirtuOso Documentary Short on Use of Technology in VR Music Video” by Gustavo Raskowsky, Marcos Luna Hoyas, and team of Baylor University (Waco, Texas, U.S.)

The Audience Choice Award: "KCLOC" by Ninaad Kulkarni, School of Visual Arts (New York, U.S.)

The student filmmakers behind the winning selections received awards for their work, as well as prizes courtesy of Avid, Blackmagic Design, Other World Computing and Sundog Media Toolkit. Filmmaker information is available at

“The art and craft of filmmaking demands an ever-growing ease with technology that changes at lightning-fast speeds. This year’s outstanding submissions demonstrate impressive facility with these tools in the service of the filmmakers’ artistic endeavors,” said HPA President Seth Hallen. “Storytelling is the goal, not the technology, and it is inspiring to see how these talented young filmmakers have marshaled the tools to tell the stories they are interested in telling. The HPA is proud to support this festival, and congratulates this group of talented filmmakers!”