"There are only one or two people in North America who have seen more short films than I have," says George Eldred, program director of the Aspen Shortsfest. But, he adds, his is a dubious achievement: "Some of those, nobody but the filmmakers and their mothers need to see."
Rest assured that none of the turkeys made it into this years fest. The pool of shorts to pick from numbered around 3,000, and only 59 made the final cut. "Shorts are, in many ways, a much more agile medium than feature film is," Eldred notes. "The funding and the logistics of producing a feature sort of precludes the turnaround on a dime that the short filmmaker can do." And shorts are a unique challenge for any filmmaker; frankly, it's easier to tell a complete story in ninety minutes than in five.
The Shortsfest opens today in Aspen and runs through Sunday, April 8; visit www.aspenfilm.org for a complete schedule.