Winning Top Prize at a Film Festival
When Cameron Barrett learned our documentary film, Continuum, Against All Odds, had been accepted into the All Sports Los Angeles Film Festival, she was so excited. There are a wide array of awards programs these days – so many that they may become all too common and lose their unique value. But, such is not the case with a film festival, and certainly not one that has a niche – in this case, sports.
Typically, we produce films as a team, and in many ways this one was no different. What was different was that Cameron had led her production team to Australia, on her own, and directed this show from start to finish. As such, it had her stamp, her storyline, and her blood and sweat all over it. So, to be accepted into any festival is a good feeling.
Showing up at such events is often overly “Hollywood” for me. I am not easily impressed with the glitter and so on. What made this festival so much fun was that it didn’t have any of that pretentious glitter to it – and it was in Hollywood! The event was held at the Raliegh Studios, next door to Paramount. We invited friends and peers, and it was just what you might expect at such an event – a combination of fun, dialog, and a bit of nervousness.
Our guests were terrific and very supportive. Cameron and I had never seen this particular film on the “big screen,” so it was fun to see it in a theater setting. And when the showing was complete, everyone was very kind, and they left. We took some of our team to dinner.
But we came back…
The evening was filled with other films to see – and Cameron really enjoyed a documentary about women’s six on six basketball, called Iowa Girls. It’s important to know that throughout this entire series of films and activities, Cameron never gave a moment’s thought to actually winning an award. It was enough to be in the competition.
So, when the awards were being handed out, she clapped and cheered for each additional trophy, but never showed any nerves or emotion related to Continuum. Finally, the last two awards were all that remained. Best short doc and best feature doc. Continuum made it into the short category, by perhaps one minute. And, as the award description was being read, Cameron was smiling and saying, “Iowa Girls. Iowa Girls.” I, on the other hand, was thinking of another film. Our film.
And so, when the words, “and the winner is… Continuum, Against All Odds,” were announced, I smiled. And, then, I laughed out loud, as Cameron’s amazed and perplexed expression peered at me with a look that defies description. “Go on! Get up there,” I said, laughing. So, it was fun. And I’m really proud of Cameron. And our Team. And everyone on the solar car team at the University of Michigan. Those guys and girls rock. Big time.