2018 Awards & Prizes

The Easterseals Disability Film Challenge recognizes the talent and hard work that goes into producing a short film in a single weekend by presenting four awards to film challenge participants: Best Film, Best Filmmaker, Best Actor and Best Promotional Campaign.

Additionally, the 2018 finalists in each award category will receive:

  • An invitation to an exclusive roundtable discussion with agents at United Talent Agency prior to the Awards reception on May 10, 2018
  • A one-year subscription to Variety Magazine
  • Inclusion in the 2018 Bentonville Film Festival

Learn more about each award, the accompanying prizes and last year’s winners below.

Award

Best Film – Top Prize

The Best Film award is presented to the leading producer based on the film’s incorporation of the required elements (theme, props and locations), production quality and plotline. Judges evaluate the film on its creative storytelling and performances from all onscreen talent.

Prize

The 2018 award recipient will receive:

  • $1,000 grant provided by Universal Filmed Entertainment Group to be used towards the filmmaker’s next production
  • Lunch Meeting with a Universal Pictures and/or Focus Features Production Executive
  • Tour of the Universal Studios Lot for entrant representative along with up to three additional key team members
  • Dell Mobile Workstation
  • A full, one-year subscription to Adobe Creative Cloud – the entire collection of 20+ creative desktop and mobile apps including Premiere Pro CC, After Effects CC, and Photoshop CC
  • Nike gift bag with assorted products, including a pair of shoes from the new FlyEase line
  • One-year subscription to Variety magazine
  • Inclusion in HollyShorts Film Festival, August 9-18, 2018, Los Angeles, an Academy Award-qualifying competition
  • Inclusion in the 2018 Bentonville Film Festival
  • An invitation to an exclusive roundtable discussion with agents at United Talent Agency prior to the Awards reception on May 10, 2018

2018 Winner – “Check Mate” (5:52)

Carl Hansen | Buddy Comedy

Award

Best Filmmaker

The Best Filmmaker award is presented to the director of the film with the most outstanding direction of acting, cinematography and storytelling. Dependent upon the genre/theme, judges base their decision on the director’s ability to evoke emotions in specific scenes as well as surrounding the overall film as appropriate.

Prize

The 2018 award recipient will receive:

  • $1,000 grant provided by Universal Filmed Entertainment Group to be used towards the filmmaker’s next production
  • Dell 2-in-1 Computer
  • Mentor Meeting with Bec Smith – Agent, Motion Picture Literary and UTA Independent Film Group
  • A full, one-year subscription to Adobe Creative Cloud – the entire collection of 20+ creative desktop and mobile apps including Premiere Pro CC, After Effects CC, and Photoshop CC
  • Nike gift bag with assorted products, including a pair of shoes from the new FlyEase line
  • One-year subscription to Variety magazine
  • Inclusion in HollyShorts Film Festival, August 9-18, 2018, Los Angeles, an Academy Award-qualifying competition
  • Inclusion in the 2018 Bentonville Film Festival
  • An invitation to an exclusive roundtable discussion with agents at United Talent Agency prior to the Awards reception on May 10, 2018

2018 Winner – “Hit On” (5:39)

Day Daniells | Buddy Comedy

Award

Best Actor

The Best Actor award is presented to the actor with the most memorable performance. Judges consider the complexity of the character and the actor’s ability to take on this challenging role.

Prize

The 2018 award recipient will receive:

  • $1,000 grant provided by Universal Filmed Entertainment Group to be used towards the filmmaker’s next production
  • Dell 2-in-1 Computer
  • Nike gift bag with assorted products, including a pair of shoes from the new FlyEase line
  • Mentor Meeting with Casting Director Pam Dixon
  • A full, one-year subscription to Adobe Creative Cloud – the entire collection of 20+ creative desktop and mobile apps including Premiere Pro CC, After Effects CC, and Photoshop CC
  • One-year subscription to Variety magazine
  • Inclusion in HollyShorts Film Festival, August 9-18, 2018, Los Angeles, an Academy Award-qualifying competition
  • Inclusion in the 2018 Bentonville Film Festival
  • An invitation to an exclusive roundtable discussion with agents at United Talent Agency prior to the Awards reception on May 10, 2018

2018 Winner – “Visibility” (4:40)

J.B. Abajian | Buddy Comedy

Award

Best Awareness Campaign

The Best Awareness Campaign award is presented to the leading producer for the team that raises the most awareness for their film through marketing strategies. Judges will review the YouTube videos for number of overall views, shares, likes, and press coverage.

Prize

The award recipient will receive:

  • $1,000 grant provided by Universal Filmed Entertainment Group to be used towards the filmmaker’s next production
  • Nike gift bag with assorted products, including a pair of shoes from the new FlyEase line
  • Mentor Meeting with CBS Entertainment Diversity’s Tiffany Smith-Anoa’i
  • A full, one-year subscription to Adobe Creative Cloud – the entire collection of 20+ creative desktop and mobile apps including Premiere Pro CC, After Effects CC, and Photoshop CC
  • One-year subscription to Variety magazine
  • Inclusion in the 2018 Bentonville Film Festival
  • An invitation to an exclusive roundtable discussion with agents at United Talent Agency prior to the Awards reception on May 10, 2018

2018 Winner – “Footloose” (5:53)

David Tenenbaum | Buddy Comedy