On the closing day of the International short film Festival Leuven for the 14th time, the VAF Wildcards awarded the annual prizes for up-and-coming film talent. This year, the VAF Wildcards for Louisiana Mees (Fiction), Zaïde Bil (Documentary), Lisa Foster (Animation) and Meltse Van Coillie (FilmLab). For the first time, this year also three honorable mentions given. This Julian Wolf (Fiction), Antoine Fontaine (Documentary) and Aagje Van Damme (Animation). With a value of 185.000 EUR, the VAF Wildcards the biggest film awards of the country.
In total, 72 films from graduate film makers registered for the Wildcardcompetitie: 27 fiction films, 23 documentaries, 11 animated films and 11 experimental single-screenwerken for the film lab category. The winners and honorable mentions were chosen by a specialized jury, with well known names from the Flemish film and cultural sector, such as actress Natali Broods, actor and screenwriter Zouzou Ben Chikha, a documentary filmmaker Manu Riche, author and opiniemaakster Dalilla Hermans, producer Eric Goossens and filmmaker Sarah Vanagt.
Out of the 72 entries were four Wildcardwinnaars and three honorable mentions selected. Three of the four winning projects are the projects of students of the KASK, the fourth winner is the final project of a RITCS-student. All four of the winning projects are from female directors.
All of the VAF Wildcards together are good for 185.000 EUR, so it’s immediately the biggest film awards of the country. There are Wild cards awarded in all categories that the VAF supports: a fiction Wildcard (60.000 EUR), a documentary Wildcard (EUR 40,000), an animation Wildcard (60.000 EUR) and a film lab Wildcard (25,000 EUR).
The VAF Wildcard-Fiction this year to Louisiana Mees (KASK) with Waithood, a short film about five young Athenians who in luxury Airbnb’s play to their hopeless situation, to flee, to their fate inevitably floats to the surface. The jury was to say that under the impression of “clear vision and strong commitment” of this film.
In addition, the jury awarded honorable mention to Julian Wolf (LUCA) for Meli Melo, a short fiction film that is a portrait sketch of a mixed group of young people from the big city who are struggling with a search for identity, ambition and a place in this modern society. Meli Melo was in October, was nominated as Best Belgian student short at the Film Fest Gent.