LSFF 2023: Our Award Winning Films



Monday 6th February, 2023

LSFF 2023: Our Award Winning Films

As our 20th festival moved towards its conclusion, on Saturday 28 January we hosted our annual awards ceremony at Rich Mix.

Our audience of filmmakers, producers, directors, short film fans and those aspiring to get into the industry gathered to see our winning films announced by festival director Philip Ilson, Head of UK Programme Varun Raman and our host, actress Ciara Baxendale. We rounded off the celebrations with DJ sets from Philip Ilson and filmmaker Raza Tariq (Taming a Seahorse), and with some delicious canned cocktails provided by MOTH drinks.
Chosen by our jury members Abiba Coulibaly, Aaliah Simpson and Maryam Tafakory (with great difficulty!) these films represent the breadth and creative potential of the UK and international short filmmaking industries.

And the Winners and Special Mentions are…

Firstly our Best UK Short Award, selected from the UK Competition strand programmed by Varun Raman. Supported by British Council, the Best UK Short Award goes to TOO ROUGH, directed by Sean Lìonadh. Our jury said this about the film:

“Too Rough was selected due to its ability to portray an intensely sensitive topic with skill and grace. What stood out to us was Sean’s ability to balance tough themes of religious dogma, domestic abuse, alcoholism, homophobia and neurodivergence whilst managing to incorporate a tenderness and effortless humour into the short form. We’re very much looking forward to what they work on next.”

Our Runner Up is BEWARE OF TRAINS, directed by Emma Calder. The jury said;

“Beware of Trains uses expressive hybrid animation to examine the deeply disturbing corners of the mind with honesty and empathy.”

Next, the Best International Short Film award, supported by Nowness and selected from the International Competition strand, programmed by Head of International Programme Qila Gill.

Our winner is WILL MY PARENTS COME TO SEE ME, directed by Mo Harawe. The jury said;

“We selected Will My Parents Come To See Me due to its stunning yet desolate depiction of a real-life contentious issue – driven by strong aesthetic choices that successfully help to articulate a very clear visual language. It is a short that will stay with us as Mo Harawe manages to spark questions about the death penalty through his unusual perspective that in no way felt exploitative of that particular experience.”

Our Runner-Up is MYSTIC AND MOMOK, directed by Russell Morton.

“Mystic & Momok was chosen for its experimental and heartfelt tribute to a loved one, which serves as a restorative lesson in collective memorialisation and grieving for us all.”

Finally, our Lo-Budget Award, supported by Intermission Youth and judged by Intermission members Rakiya Hasan and Mascuud Dahir, goes to BUDDYMOVIE by Ryan McGlade.

Our festival partners Script Compass also announced the winner of their screenplay development opportunity; the chance to work with their team to develop a short film into a feature. The Script Compass team chose TRAP by Anastasia Veber for the award.


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