Sunday, October 21, 2007
Director, Elka Kerkhofs with Producer, Donna Molan
Elka Kerkhofs won the Award for best Tertiary animation in the Atom Awards. The 2007 EnhanceTV ATOM Awards 25th anniversary presentation took place last night at The Plaza Ballroom in the Regent Theatre in Melbourne.
Each year, the program recognizes excellence in over thirty categories of Film, Television, Animation and Multimedia and celebrates the very best of Australian and New Zealand production. The 2007 EnhanceTV ATOM Awards are open to the education and industry sectors, students, production companies, independent filmmakers, educational bodies and educational producers in both countries.
Kerkhofs acknowledged that the award was “a testament to the story’s success” and thanked the Victorian College of the Arts “who were instrumental in helping me express this intimate story onto the big screen.’ Elka commended the other films in the category; ‘It makes me especially proud, that the judges picked ‘Filled With Water’ from such a selection of quality.’
Elka won the My Queer Career film competition in Sydney earlier this year. Following that, she was invited to travel the film all around the world. The film has traveled to various festivals in America including New York, and San Francisco amongst others. It now has a distributor in North America and this month the film is playing in various cinemas in Elka’s birth country, Belgium. The film has taken the Gay Film Festival Circuit by storm.
Elka says: ”Your relationship changes to your film over time. When you are creating the work it is all very personal, but after it is made, it tends to take on a life of its own. People from various parts of the world have identified with the film in their own personal way, which has been so rewarding. I’m feeling especially honoured receiving the award however on home soil”.
The best Tertiary animation Award is awarded to a most promising filmmaker demonstrating an innovative, skilled and mature command of technical elements in animation.
'Filled With Water' is a five-minute film about finding love and losing love.
The film’s producer, Donna Molan says: “It’s had a lot of success at gay and lesbian festivals, but it’s not just for queer audiences. The film is essentially about finding fulfillment within yourself and I think that this message is universal and resonates with a wide audience; gay or straight”.
Elka started working on a new animation film ‘Golden Woman’ with Darwin writer Mary Anne Butler and Producer Kate Breen for which the team received NTFO development funding to kick-start the project.
'Filled With Water' will play this month at the Euroscoop in Genk on Thursday the 25 of October at 20.15u and Sunday the 28 of October at 11u and Thursday the 1 of November at 20.15u.
Thursday, August 2, 2007
Filled With Water could be viewed at the MIFA digital video library - the Festival’s Animation Market at Annecy in France. The festival vibe was quite different then NewFest in New York, it felt much more intimate then the big smoke and the people attending where too of a different kind. Mad animators instead of lots of queers! I carried my iPod with me at all times during the festival - to show people my film in the event that they couldn’t make it to the MIFA market. This proved to be a very successful marketing tool and i was able to show the film to a Quebec festival programmer, who wanted to take a copy with him! We were also encouraged to network at the professional practitioner’s party (for invited filmmakers and animation students only). Since I was offered a student accreditation for the festival, I was invited to this filmmakers’ party, which was great. Additionally, the MIFA animation market was well set up for networking with people working in the animation industry, from across the globe. It was here where I generate interest in my work via a meeting with the Flanders Animation delegation. They have now conducted an interview with me that is posted on their website. Click here to read the interview. I met so many industry people, I’m not sure how the organizers keep track of it all. But given these circumstances I believe they did a fantastic job.
I attended so many screenings and events at both these festivals that it’s hard to describe what I gained out of each session, but some of these tangible benefits will no doubt be there in the future even if they’re not all visible yet. I believe if it was not for my attendance to both NewFest and Annecy - with the support of the AFC and the NTFO - my career as a filmmaker might not have gathered so much positive successful momentum as it is taking now. It is so important for filmmakers to be nurtured and feel supported when they are making works artistically, and the AFC and the NTFO fill these supportive roles.
I would like to give a massive thanks for your support. It has given me new drive and focus for my work, and a much stronger sense of the reality of the global film and animation community.
While attending these festivals Filled With Water was HIGHLY COMMENDED in the most Innovative category, Best Australian Short Films, Dendy Awards Sydney International Film Festival, June 07
Watch Filled With Water on the big screen in San Francisco’s Frameline on the 16 and 24 of June in their FUN IN GIRL’S SHORT program, in Melbourne on the 23 of June in the AUSTRALIAN PANORAMA #1 program at MIAF and in Philadelphia on the 18 of July as part of the 13th International Philadelphia Gay & Lesbian Film Festival.
Friday, June 8, 2007
Filled With Water was very well received at NewFest GLBT Film Festival in New York. Some 150 people attended the ON THE MOVE queer animation program on Saturday the 2 June 2007 at the AMC Theatre on 34St-8Ave West New York City.
There where 6 filmmakers present of the total 18 films screened. At the end of the screening all 6 of us where called forward for a short Question and Answer session. We where asked questions about what inspired us to make the film, to how we made the film technically. The audience reaction to my film was extremely positive, especially from female audience members, and from some colleague animators. 2 Days later we had an opportunity to discuss the films with other filmmakers and industry people at an organized industry gathering organized by NewFest. Before I left Australia I had business cards and postcards professionally made. These contained high quality, full colour images of my work, in addition to the session dates and times of the film at the two different festivals. This method turned out to be an extremely productive marketing and promotions tool, as I could easily distribute information about my screenings during different industry and social gatherings beforehand. I believe this increased audience attendance at the screening. The publicity office organized a web-based interview. Click here to read the interview. Also the lesbian Curve magazine reviewed the film:
Hot Shorts for Chicks
Women filmmakers are shaking up the LGBT Film Festival scene with their unique short takes on the humor and drama of lesbian life.
Filled With Water (Australia), by Elka Kerkhofs, is a charming animated love story. Wordless, the emotions are told visually, with music and with sighs. The main character's state of emotion can be tracked by the heart-shaped space in her chest...sometimes empty, sometimes full, sometimes throbbing.
I was very happy with my attendance to NewFest and thought it was all very well organized and I met some really wonderful filmmakers from all around the world.
My attendance at NewFest was funded by the AFC and the NTFO.
Watch Filled With Water on the big screen in San Francisco’s Frameline on the 16 and 24 of June in their FUN IN GIRL’S SHORT program and in Melbourne on the 23 of June in the AUSTRALIAN PANORAMA #1 program at MIAF.
Friday, May 18, 2007
Darwin Animator Elka Kerkhofs continues to ride a wave of success.
Kerkhofs’ animation, Filled With Water has been selected to screen at the two biggest international gay and lesbian film festivals; NewFest GLBT Film Festival in New York and the San Francisco International Gay & Lesbian Film Festival, Frameline 31
These invitations follow accolades her film received in Australia, where earlier this year she won the production award at the My Queer Career Competition in the Sydney Mardi Gras film festival. She was also recently highly commended for the prestigious Dendy Awards in Sydney. “I’ am ecstatic, beside myself that I’m going to New York and that ‘Filled With Water’ is doing so well” Elka said… “I can’t stop smiling. It’s a huge breakthrough to promote your film internationally, but on the other hand it means much more work.”
The hard work is paying off however as Elka is heading off to ‘NewFest’ in New York to see her film on the big screen and be amongst the hub of the festival through the Australia Film Commission’s travel grant scheme. “The AFC is all about promoting Australian films overseas, and trying to generate interest in the Australian film industry.” She says, “Newfest is seen as important. They don’t just fund you to go to any festival. I am very grateful for this opportunity to showcase the film and network with fellow filmmakers. It would not have been possible financially, for me to go without the aid of the AFC”.
Whilst Elka is in the States, signing deals is also on the agenda. “We are just signing a contract with Frame Line Distribution in San Francisco, which means ‘Filled With Water’ will be distributed in North America. We also had contact with M.T.V about screening the film in one of their programs.” Kerkhofs continues: “I don’t know exactly how all this interest in ‘Filled With Water’ will impact on my future artistic career, I’m just sure that I intend to keep on making films and telling stories, and all this interest will certainly help.”
Traveling with her film overseas is not just about promotion, its also about meeting other filmmakers and building platforms that allow her to start developing fully her next film.
Golden Woman, is a short film she is currently working on and seeking funding for with Darwin writer Mary Anne Butler. Kerkhofs plans to also utilize this trip to garner interest and support in that film.
‘Filled with Water’ is a five-minute film about finding love and losing love.
Elka said: “It’s had a lot of success at gay and lesbian festivals, but it’s not just for queer audiences. The film is essentially about finding fulfillment within yourself and I think that this message is universal and resonates with a wide audience; gay or straight”.
‘Filled With Water’ will screen during the Darwin Pride Festival at Darwin’s Deckchair cinema on the 5 of June as part of the ‘My Queer Career’ touring program. ‘My Queer Career’ is a unique opportunity for audiences to see a diversity of queer based stories told through the lens of some of the next generation of queer talent from Australia.
Watch Filled With Water on the big screen at ACMI between the 19 and 24 of June as part of the Melbourne international Animation Festival.
Wednesday, May 9, 2007
A Darwin Director has been named one of Australia's most promising filmmaker at the biggest queer film festival in the nation. Elka Kerkhofs, 35, won the production award at ‘My Queer Career’ competition, staged during the opening night of the Sydney Mardi Gras film festival on Thursday. Her animation 'Filled With Water' was one of ten films to screen at the Mardi Gras festival. “I’m very happy and excited about having won this award, because it will extend the life of my animation, and give the film further marketing opportunities” she said. 'Filled With Water' is a five-minute animation about love, heartbreak and finding fulfilment through loss. Kerkhofs said she believed her film won an award is because it carried an emotional message, and was technically proficient. . "I wanted to create a character that Lesbians could identify with," she said. “It’s hard to make an animated character that people can relate to." "I got a lot of emotional responses when people watched the film, so I feel I was successful in touching people with this character." ‘Filled With Water’ will travel around Australia as part of the queer screen touring program.
My attendance at Queer screen was funded by the NTFO.
Het Belang Van Limburg, Belgium, 15 February 2007
NT News, Darwin, Australia, 19 February 2007
BNEWS, Melbourne, Australia, 22 February 2007
Sydney Star Observer, Sydney, Australia, 23 February, 2007
Het Nieuwsblad, Belgium, 24 February, 2007
Pas Uit, street magazine, Belgium, 26 February, 2007
Saturday, April 21, 2007
Best Production Award,
My Queer Career competition
Sydney Mardi Gras Film Festival, Feb 07
Best Tertiary Animation,
EnhanceTV ATOM Awards,
Melbourne, Oct 07
The audience award for Best Women’s Short,
Pikes Peak Lavender Film Festival,
Colorado Springs, Sep 07
Best Student Animation Film
Warburton Film Fest, June 08
2nd Women's International Film and Video Competition,
Quezon City, Philippines, March 07
Best-short-short, Director’s Club Awards
Fresno California Reel Pride GLBT Film Festival, Sep 07
Most Innovative category,
Best Australian Short Films, DENDY Awards
Sydney International Film Festival, June 07
Best romance for Best In Short Film Season 8
Logo MTV, September 09
Best Australian Short Queer Film,
Melbourne Queer Film Festival, March 08
Best Queer Short Film, Planet Out Awards
Miami International GLBT Film Festival, March 08
VCA RELATED AWARDS
E.H. Shepard Award
Innovation in drawing for animation at the VCA, Sep 06
Anthony Ganim Postgraduate Award
Production and realisation of a graduate film, Jul 06
VCA Artistic Merit Scholarship
For Post Graduate studies in Animation at the VCA, March 06
VCA School of Film & Television Award
Outstanding Overall Graduate Diploma Student, Dec 06
OFFICIAL SELECTIONS 2009
Lismore Queer Fruits Film Festival, Dec 09
Melbourne Sexy International Film Festival, October 09
Perth Sexy International Film Festival, October 09
Montreal International LGBT Film Festival, October 09
Southwest Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, October 09
Rio de Janeiro International Festival of LGBT Animation, Sept 09
Lesvos Greece Sappho Garden of the Arts film night, Sept 09
Mullumbimby Mullum Flicks Program, Aug 09
Seoul International Women’s Film Festival, April 09
Tucson DinnerWareArtsSpace public presentation, July 09
Hasselt Belgium De Madam public presentation, June 09
Genk Belgium De Bib public presentation, June 09
Sydney Caught Short Film Festival, March 09
MTV USA Logo Best Short Films Program, Jun 08
OFFICIAL SELECTIONS 2008
Paris Lesbian and Feminist Film Festival, Oct 08
Melbourne Queer Film Festival, March 08
Mexico City Women in Film and TV International Festival, Sept 08
Vienna International Women Animation Festival, March 08
Kyiv Ukraine Molodist International Film Festival, Oct 08
Rio de Janeiro International Festival of Erotic Animation, Nov 08
Milan International GLBT Film Festival, Jul 08
Tokyo International Lesbian & Gay Film Festival, Jul 08
Ann Arbor Film Festival, March 08
Athens International Film and Video Festival, April 08
San Diego FilmOut GLBT Film Festival, April 08
Miami International GLBT Film Festival, April 08
Brussels GLBT Film Festival, Jan 08
Liege GLBT Film Festival, Jan 08
Tel Aviv Israel GLBT Film Festival, June 08
Toronto In side Out GLBT Festival, June 08
Downtown Dayton LGBT Film Festival, Sept 08
Winnipeg Gay and Lesbian Film Society, Oct 08
Jakarta Q Film Festival, Aug 08
Adelaide Fringe Festival, Feb 08
Warburton Film Fest, June 08
Bendigo Queer Film Festival, April 08
Cairns Queer Film Festival, April 08
Rockhampton Queer Film Festival, April 08
Austin, The Annual Out & Equal Workplace Summit, Sept 08
OFFICIAL SELECTIONS 2007
RICA Wissembourg France International Animation Festival, Nov 07
San Francisco International GLBT Film Festival, June 07
New York NewFest International GLBT Film Festival, June 07
Melbourne International Animation Festival, June 07
Melbourne ATOM Awards finalists screening, Oct 07
Philadelphia PhillyFest International GLBT Film Festival, Jul 07
Austin International GLBT Film Festival, Oct 07
Sydney Mardi Gras Film Festival, Opening Night, Feb 07
Liverpool Outsiders GLBT Film Festival, Nov 07
New York Mix GLBT Festival, Oct 07
Hasselt Belgium Zebra Centrum Festival, Oct 07
Genk Belgium Euroscoop program, Oct 07
Seattle Lesbian and Gay Film Festival, Oct 07
Soa Paulo Mix Brazil International GLBT Film Festival, Nov 07
Quezon City Philippines, International Women’s Film Festival, Mar 07
Fresno California Reel Pride GLBT Film Festival, Sep 07
Milwaukee GLBT Film Festival, Sept 07
Brisbane Queer Film Festival, Closing Night, June 07
Berlin 2nd XPOSED International Queer Short Film Festival, June 07
Colorado Springs Pikes Peak Lavender Film Festival, Sep 07
Virginia Out! Hampton Roads Film Festival, Sep 07
Adelaide Feast fundraiser, Sep 07
Darwin Pride Film Festival, May 07
Melbourne VCA Graduation screenings, ACMI, Dec 06
A DARWIN filmmaker’s short animation has been chosen to screen at the opening night of the Sydney Mardi Gras Film
Festival in February. Elka Kerkhofs’ 'Filled With Water' is one of 10 films to screen as part of the My Queer Career competition at the biggest queer film festival in Australia. “It’s a real honour,” Kerkhofs, 35, said. “It’s absolutely amazing.” “The animation took me about five months of solid work...I had no social life.” “Now it gives me goose bumps.”
Filled With Water is a five-minute animation about love, heartbreak and finding fulfilment through loss. “It’s a journey through the mind and body in search for love,” she said. Kerkhofs has been in Melbourne for the past year where she completed a one-year course in animation at the Victorian College of the Arts film and television school, where she made Filled With Water. She said the screening at the film festival would give her international exposure.
As a finalist of My Queer Career, Kerkhofs will be in the running for the world’s largest prize for gay and lesbian short
films, the International Iris Prize - worth more than $60,000.
NT News, Darwin, Australia, 20 January 2007
Darwin Sun, Darwin, Australia, 23 January 2007
Het Belang Van Limburg, Belgium, 23 January 2007
De Standard, Belgium, 25 January 2007
Het Nieuwsblad, Belgium, 26 January 2007
LOTL, Sydney, Australia, 28 January 2007
Sydney Star Observer, Sydney, Australia, 8 February 2007
JOY FM, Melbourne, Australia, radio interview, 10 February 2007
This is a story about Anoka who lives in a city where the streets are cluttered with sculptures and the beaches are filled with dog statues. Anoka feels a deep emptiness in the world around her. Everyday she takes herself to the beach as if this is her only existence. She skates her way through the only life she knows. Until one day she walks into a large TV and for the first time her heart glows red for the ballerina within the screen. Anoka finds her way into the TV and immerses herself in the ballerina’s world sharing her heart and falling in love. They dance and blend together as one and get flooded by hundreds of roses. Then after a very passionate kiss a transformation takes place and she can only watch in disbelieve. The ballerina changes in a bottle of wine and the roses change into glasses filled with red wine. The bottle falls over and crashes all the glasses and the TV screen and breaks in the lifeless world she once knew. She realizes that the love she is looking for has been inside and around her all along and at that moment she allows herself to become one with nature. Finding your heart can mean losing it first.
Anoka feels deep emptiness until she walks into a TV and her heart begins to glow for the ballerina inside. But she learns filling her heart can mean breaking it, when the one you love craves a stronger desire.
Read 250 word synopsis here
Running Time-----5 minutes
Format-----------Beta SP & DVD
Frame Rate-------25 frames per second
Country of Origin-----Australia
Film Completed-----December 2006
Production Company-----The Victorian College of the Arts, University of Melbourne
Writer, Director, Animator-------Elka Kerkhofs
Supervising Producers------Paul Fletcher and Robert Stephenson
Rotoscoped Anoka-----------Kye Plunkett
Life Anoka-----------------Sarah Grimmer
Voice over Anoka-----------Eryn Jean Norvill
Production Assistant-------Maria Karagiozakis
Online Editor---------Declan Mclougan
Sound Designer and Mixer---------------Ben Hurt