SCA announces top 10 finalists for 2016 Saugatuck Shorts Film Festival



Marking its fourth year spotlighting Michigan film with the help of filmmakers and industry professionals, Saugatuck Center for the Arts (SCA) has announced the top 10 finalists of the 2016 Saugatuck Shorts Film Competition.


Hand-selected by a group of five film industry professionals, the finalists (in no particular order) are:


In the ADULT category

  • Hold On – Andrew Behm
  • Summer – Paul Yergin
  • Buying Happiness – Paul Chittland
  • Conrad – Brittany Dunn
  • The Craftsman – Chris Mac

In the STUDENT category

  • Oh the Voices – Carson Tate
  • A Lake Michigan Sunset – Brennan Huizinga
  • A Taste of Michigan – Dario Lirio and Brennan Huizinga
  • October in Michigan – Holly Parker
  • The Pencil – Jillian Parker

The panel of judges has also decided who will be taking home the cash prizes of $2,500 for both the student and adult categories: $500 judges’ award for best student film, $1,000 judges award for best adult film, and $1,000 for “Fan Favorite.” Audience members will have the opportunity to vote for their favorite after all the films have been screened. All of the films for the competition were challenged to use their interpretation of “Michigan Flavor.”


The judges for this year’s competition were chosen based on their familiarity with the entertainment industry and their ability to provide credible, constructive feedback.


“We couldn’t ask for a greater group of people,” said SCA Marketing and Sales Director, Angela Peavey. ”Film is one of my passions, and to see these professionals willing to offer their time and talents is absolutely amazing. We’re very lucky to have them.”


The first industry professional taking the judge’s seat is Shane Carson. In 2014, Carson joined the prestigious SAG/AFTRA union and just returned from California where he represented the State of Michigan at their regional conference. Carson is most known for his role in the film, Pirate’s Code: The Adventures of Mickey Matson, where he portrayed the character Gunner Team Leader. Shane has also acted in 40+ lead roles in films. Follow him on social media @WowShane.


Co-founder of the Thriller! Chiller! Film Festival and owner of UnSAFE Film Office, Anthony Griffin also judged this year’s competition. UnSAFE Film Office has produced and shot multiple documentaries, short films, music videos and commercials over the last decade. Griffin has served on the board for the West Michigan Video and Film Alliance and the Grand Rapids Community Media Center and was named Michigan’s Top Filmmaker in 2010.


Doug Remtema owner of Sonlight Films also served as a judge at this year’s competition. Remtema started Sonlight Films in 2003 and works on producing films and television shows that revolve around positive and uplifting material.


Another judge, Kristin Mellian, has performed professionally in film, television, Off-Broadway and regional theatre. As a vocalist Mellian has headlined on Celebrity and Oceania Cruiselines traveling to North America, Central America, South America, Europe and Africa. Mellian is currently working in the acting department at the Compass College of Cinematic Arts.


Producer with Alarm 25 Studios and Media Director at Resurrection Life Church, Sean Silvia is another judge for this year’s competition. With a strong education and experience in theatre, film, live event production and graphic design, Silvia has a passion for creative storytelling and innovative media. Silvia prides himself on understanding the art in the details and pushes the design to it’s fullest.


The Saugatuck Shorts Film Competition will be held on November 5 at 400 Culver Street. The doors to the event will open at 6:30 pm, and those attending will have the chance to meet with the finalists and enjoy a cash bar. The screening of the films will begin at 7:15 pm.


Tickets are $10/Students and $20/adults and can be purchased online here or by at  phone at 269.857.2399.