2017 Best Short winner announced, new film fest name unveiled

The winner of the 2017 GayCharlotte Film Festival’s Best Short-Viewers’ Choice Award has been chosen and announced, as Charlotte Pride also unveils the new name of its annual LGBTQ film festival.

Short film winner announced

The ninth annual GayCharlotte Film Festival was held June 1-4, 2017, on the campus of Johnson C. Smith University. On opening night, audience members viewed a showcase of LGBTQ-themed short films and voted on their favorite to win this year’s Best Short-Viewers’ Choice Award.

Charlotte Pride is proud to announce that viewers chose the short film “Counting,” directed by Dan Pal, written by Kari Morris and staring Kenzie Seibert, Carolyn Reynolds and Joan McGrath. Producers for the short film included Pal and David Zak.

Director Dan Pal said of the film and the award:

As a production of Chicago’s Pride Films & Plays we were thrilled to be part of your festival and even more honored to have won the Best Short – Viewer’s Choice 2017!

The script for Counting was a screenplay contest submission that Pride Films & Plays initiated well over a year ago. As written by New Yorker Kari Morris, I was immediately touched by the story of two women that for decades saved up their pennies in hopes of one day being able to buy a marriage license. Of course, we heartbreakingly learn that by the time gay marriage becomes legalized in the U.S. one of the women has passed away, leaving the other to mournfully greet the news that would have finally recognized their long time union. It’s a narrative that is all too common within the LGBT community. So many couples never had the opportunity to be legally recognized in the U.S.

I teach film at DePaul University in Chicago as well as serve as a company member of Pride Films and Plays. I’ve seen so many scripts and films over the years that focus on some of the same struggles: coming out, AIDS, bullying, etc. While these are still important stories that need to be told, it was so great to read a fresh script that had clear relevance to so many older people living in the LGBT community today.

We shot Counting last July on the north side of Chicago – home to many in the LGBT community. We’re very proud of the response the film has received and hope to continue to impact our community with our productions in the many years to come.

Charlotte Pride and the film festival offer Pal and the entire “Counting” team a big congratulations and round of applause for their award win this year!

Film festival unveils new name for 10th annual celebration

In anticipation of the film festival’s 10th annual event in 2018, Charlotte Pride is pleased to announce the unveiling of our rebranded event. Through the spring, Charlotte Pride invited community members to vote on three possible new names for the annual event. The votes were tallied through the end of the film festival this month and the new name unveiled on June 4.

The new film festival will be known as Reel Out Charlotte. The new, more modern, more inclusive name will shepherd the film festival into its second decade. We are excited about what the future holds for Reel Out Charlotte and our upcoming 10th annual event. Bigger events, with film premieres, artist and filmmaker panels, receptions and more! We’re still dreaming and making plans for our event in 2018, so stay tuned for more information.