The Victoria Film Festival wraps up another year of cinematic spectacle!

From the Opening Gala Reception, where everyone was dressed to impress, to world-class raconteur John Landis’ lively interview with Richard Crouse. From the pink carpet walk for the world premiere of A Little Bit Zombie to an intimate evening with Linda Blair at Bon Rouge. From 18 sold out screenings and events, to awesome ideas pitched for cash prizes, to the ever-popular Sips ‘n’ Cinema and the delicious Feast and a Film, the Fest was full of new ideas, great crowds, stellar parties, and exceptional films.

The 10 day event wrapped up Sunday evening the End of Fest Bash at Spinnakers, where the Driftwood beer was flowing, and the winning films of the 18th annual Victoria Film Festival were announced:

Metropol Audience Favourite Short:
Joanna Makes a Friend – by Jeremy Lutter

Audience Favourite Feature:
The Girls in the Band – by Judy Chaikin

Cineplex Entertainment Best Short Animation:
Strange Fruit – by Neal Sopata

Best Documentary:
To Be Heard – by Amy Sultan, Roland Legiardi-Laura, Deborah Shaffer, and Edwin Martinez

Best Canadian Feature:
Cloudburst – by Thom FItzgerald

Best Feature:
Rundskop (Bullhead) – by Michäel R. Roskam

Other Notables:

KCTS-9 Documentary Pitching Contest
During the opening weekend SpringBoard industry event, local producers Barbara Hager and David Springbett split the $10000 prize offered by KCTS9 for documentary series ideas. Hager’s project “Jane Doe: The Tale of an Urban Deer” will explore the controversy surrounding the fate of hundreds of black-tailed deer living in the Greater Victoria region when the CRD releases its Deer Management Plan later this year. Springbett’s “Black Harvest” involves a mutating fungus capable of devastating one of the world’s most important food crops – wheat – threatening famine, economic havoc, and political instability.

“I am thrilled to have been selected to receive development support for “Jane Doe: The Tale of an Urban Deer” from KCTS9.” says Hager, “The documentary pitch competition added an exciting element to Springboard, the Victoria Film Festival’s industry program.”

Something Ventured:
On Thursday, during the Something Ventured screening, the top three finalists from the Awesome Sh!t Club pitched ideas to the crowd at the Odeon, in an evening reminiscent of Dragon’s Den. Pitches from Voictoria Makerspace and Olio Cooperative started off the show, but in the end, it was Liam McLaughlin of Mesh Mesh who took home the grand prize for a free city-wide Wi-Fi project. Over $3500 was awarded to him by Dan Gunn of Tectoria and Kris Constable of the Awesome Sh!t Club so McLaughlin can provide free Wi-Fi in the downtown core.