Congratulations to Borja Cobeaga on his Oscar nomination!

Huzzah! Excellent news on this snowy morning: Borja’s film “Eramos Pocos” was nominated for Best Short Film (Live Action)! This film appeared in Volume 4 and has been an audience favorite ever since. The Basque film industry must be celebrating with a three-hour lunch, today. (oh wait, ….) But seriously, the Basques support their filmmakers in ways that most American filmmakers would kill for.

We half-expected two more nominations this morning for JSF filmmakers. Steve Bognar deserved a nom. for his feature documentary “A Lion in the House.” And I’m sure Peter Sillen was considered for a cinematography nomination for “Old Joy.” Neither happened, but we’re happy for Borja’s film. His film, by the way, will be shown this weekend at our screening at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art.

Screening: Joe Merrell, Buffalo, NY, 1/26, 1/27

Joe’s excellent film “Corner, Los Angeles” graced our first volume, fourteen months ago. His new work is screening this weekend at the Resolutions 07 Festival in Buffalo. Here are some details from Joe:
The piece is called ‘Sister Cities’ and it’s in 3D
(old school red/cyan anaglyph). If anyone is interested in seeing a
little clip from it, they can visit my website at:

Joe brought a rare West Coast sensibility to the Journal, and his new film—with its evocations of sunshine and blazing heat (among other things, like porpoises)—is sure to bring a similar sunny relief to wintry Buffalo.

Screening: The Best of the JSF, Oklahoma City, 1/27-1/28

We’re thrilled about the upcoming event in the publisher’s mother country—a screening at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art. The publisher will be in attendance and, in between meetings with the governor and the Flaming Lips, will be accepting submissions from locals. The slate of films was programmed by OKCMOA film curator Brian Hearn. The event is cosponsored by deadCENTER Film. (This year’s deadCENTER Film Festival in OKC will be held June 6th through June 10th.)


WHAT: A screening of The Best of The Journal of Short Film at The Oklahoma City Museum of Art.
WHEN: Saturday, January 27, 5:30 & 8:00pm and Sunday, January 28, 2pm
WHERE: The Oklahoma City Museum of Art, 415 Couch Dr., downtown OKC

Visit the museum’s website for the complete program. Visit deadCENTER’s website for their upcoming activities.

The Politics and Pragmatics of Film Preservation

Every now and then a discussion breaks out on the Frameworks listserv that is worth reading. (the daily trading of information is good, too, but less so for the outsider.) Last month there was a long discussion of a “cultural boycott of Israel,” which was good, if not always film-centered. (find it HERE and read the Replies.)

But there is a better example of the listserv in the recent talk about film preservation. In response to some of the activities of the Chicago Film Group (discussed last month), someone raised questions about the politics of grants and preservation. (read it HERE.) It’s nice seeing both the opinionated and the practitioners on the same list. Below are two excerpts from the thread:

(in response to celebrating the work of Anthony McCall)
But if you take a look at the recent critical work on McCall, . . . you find a complete erasure of McCall’s radical political/ideological critique of the artworld. He’s now been safely ensconced in the gallery and museum artworld as a formalist, after denouncing it in Argument.

(and then, in the same thread but on the issue of how much it costs to preserve film)
We can currently scan 2K at 16 fps, and 4K at 5 fps — and 1600 x 1200 (a good choice for regular 16mm) at 32 fps. This may change radically in the near future, with very fast high resolution scanning — 24 fps or greater at 4K. . . . Of course, there’s the issue of data storage. Storing uncompressed 4K scans (at 12 bits, each frame would take over 18MB, or 27 gigs per minute). But the second you are dealing with 4K scans, wavelet compression — JPEG 2000 or Cineform — can be very helpful, and visually lossless — about 40MB/second, or 2.4 gigs per minute. On a 400 gig LTO-3 tape, costing $65, holds 166 minutes, or a cost of forty cents per minute — 2x that — 80 cents — for two copies.

You get the picture. Some of the listers can be snippy, but the list remains a valuable resource for both filmmakers and -tourists.

Happy New Year: A Production Update

Best wishes from the JSF for a happy and productive 2007.

Production update: Volume 6 will soon be pressed and should be released by the end of the month. It promises to be one of the best collections yet. We know, we always say that, but since 2007 is the Year of the Pig, and the Pig type is known for his/her honesty, you can trust us.

In other good news, the Year of the Pig is also associated with fertility, so look for an even more prolific year from The Journal of Short Film. In this space, alone, we plan on posting more material of actual interest. (We got the census data out of our system, thankyou.) Most excitingly, in the near future there will be more extensive interviews from our many filmmakers (61, as of Vol.6).

2007 will also be a year of JSF screenings. Check the Events page periodically for updates. This month, we’re excited to return to the mother country for a screening at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art. And we’re officially starting the rumor of screenings in Portland and NYC before summer hits.

But for now, sit back, make some grand plans of your own for 2007, catch up on Volumes 1-5, and look forward to Volume 6. And as always, submit your own work for Volume 7.