Short Films

Focus Forward Films presented by GE, and Vimeo.

Vimeo and GE have announced the finalist for the Focus Forward film competition. If you haven’t heard of it, this was an open competition for three minute short films that highlight world changing ideas and the people behind them.


The 20 short films are all available for viewing on the Focus Forward website. In mid January the five winners will be announced with cash prizes going to each, and the grand prize winner will get $100,000.

I spent some time last night going through the films and I have to say they are all very impressive. The judges are going to have their work cut out for them. Not only are the subjects inspiring, the quality of the films themselves is as well. All of them have really solid production values.

If you want to participate further, the entire series will be shown at a number of film festivals over the next year including, Sundance, Tribeca, and the International Documentary Film Festival in Amsterdam. Hmmmm, I think I’d like to go to Amsterdam to see these.

Walley Films.

Mark and Angela Walley are a film making team that has been producing short films for about 8 years. They produce really wonderful films. Each film has a really great look to it, and the editing/post work is outstanding. One film is embedded below, but if you get a chance hit their website and take a look at the additional work.

Roy’s Jeans

“Roy’s Jeans”, a video by Self Edge and directed by Kellen Dengler, is an inspiring piece that highlights the entire process of creating a hand crafted pair of jeans at the hands of Roy Slaper. The video captures not only the craft and skill needed to create each one-off pair of dungarees, but Roy’s love for the machines he needs to make each pair. The attention to detail captured in the short film justifies the $275.00 cost of each pair, and helps you understand what you are paying for. Well, it helped me at least, and no I don’t own a pair of these… yet.

This video doesn’t exist

The New Balance 365 Video and Social Media Campaign.

Mother New York has created a new marketing campaign for New Balance in collaboration with film director Jesper Kouthoofd. The campaign is built around a collection of 365 short films that explore the term “Balance” from a number of perspectives.

The website is broken down into a series of easy to understand categories. Months are spread across the top of a numbered visual grid that holds a film for each day of the month. On the left, there are 3 sections, one for today’s short, an archive link for previous months, and a link to an iPhone application that allows New Balance to push content directly to your iPhone. The iPhone application is an audio-visual alarm clock, and according to New Balance, the worlds first for the iPhone letting the end-user set it to receive a new video delivered to them every day.

Every day each month a new film is loaded to the site or pushed to your phone helping to keep the New Balance brand fresh in your mind and engaging the consumer. The site moves beyond a simple passive marketing campaign asking views to share the videos on a variety of social media sites helping to integrate the campaign in online locations that connect directly with their target audience.

In a brilliant move New Balance has partnered with a number of online retail sites allowing visitors to purchase any of the shoes featured in the videos. By offloading the purchasing process to partners like Zappos, and Nordstrom’s, New Balance shares in the profits without having to manage an online commerce site.

My only knocks to the overall campaign are this. Why didn’t New Balance allow you to do the following with the iPhone application:

  1. Purchase shoes from the iPhone application?
  2. Share the videos from the iPhone to the same social networks as the website?
  3. Mark specific videos as your favorite like the website does?

Those three missed opportunities could have really pushed this to the next level.