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My Mercury – Joëlle Chesselet and Pippa Ehrlich

Joëlle Chesselet and Pippa Ehrlich (United Kingdom), My Mercury, Documentary Feature – Oscar-winner Ehrlich (My Octopus Teacher) teams up with director Chesselet to deliver a doc that is as gripping and complicated as it is wildly compelling. At 28, conservationist Yves Chesselet abandons modern comforts to live alone on Namibia’s remote Mercury Island for 8 years amidst a cacophony of constant sounds and smells. His mission: relocate 15,000 seals, making room for endangered seabirds. Through Yves’ diaries and video footage, his sister Joëlle unfolds a tale of environmental urgency, human struggle, Yves’ troubled past, his unrelenting internal torment and his moral choices. We witness a hermit’s ethical battle against nature’s harsh beauty, where saving one species means harming another. Ultimately, it’s a triumph for the birds, but with a haunting cost. This intimate documentary explores re-wilding as a complex dance between man, nature and our human psyches.

As Yves grapples with the moral complexities of his mission, we are forced to confront our own notions of ethics and responsibility. What sacrifices are we willing to make in the name of conservation? How do we reconcile the harsh realities of nature with our innate desire to protect and nurture it?

My Mercury is more than a documentary—it’s a meditation on the fragile balance between man and nature, and the profound impact of our choices on the world around us. It challenges us to reevaluate our relationship with the environment and consider the true cost of our actions. In the end, it leaves us with a haunting question: what are we willing to sacrifice for the greater good. Ultimately, it reminds us that the fate of earth, and all that live here, rests upon the choices we make and the compassion we embrace toward a world that we are destroying.

A24 Films & Dog Star Films. Written by Emmy-nominee Jinx Godfrey, Producers: Emmy nominee Ben Cotner, News & Doc Emmy winner Adriana Banta, News & Doc Emmy Nominee Emily Osborne, Mandy Chang, Nick Shumaker, Nicole Quintero Ochoa.

Award of Excellence SP

IndieFEST Film Awards Film Festival Oscar winners to hot new talentAngad Aulakh (USA), Resurrektor, Film Short – A gripping tale of loss and desperation, explores the lengths one woman will go to reunite with her deceased sister. Suspenseful and supernatural, expert storytelling supported by haunting performances, dramatic lighting and cinematography from Emmy-winner Charlie Wuppermann. Stars: Taylor Cooper (The Morning Show), Guy Kent (The Atomic Dream), Lestonja Diaz (Nashville).

IndieFEST Film Awards Film Festival Oscar winners to hot new talentIara Cardoso (Brazil), The Human Era, Nature / Environment / Wildlife – In this riveting documentary, actor and environmentalist Marco Palmeira takes us on a journey through air, fire, water and earth in Brasil, revealing how human nature fuels climate change. Well researched with expert insights and diverse perspectives, it’s a compelling exploration of our impact on the planet. Informative and inspirational.

IndieFEST Film Awards Film Festival Oscar winners to hot new talentJustin (Marmo) Marmorstein, Marmo Films (USA), Coyote – “Pocho” featuring Mc Magic, Music Video. Featuring Emmy-winner Mario Lopez as a cowboy in the wild west, this short film is part comedy, part spoof, a spotlight on cultural considerations for the Latinx community and ultimately a memorable musical performance. Features the beats and music of artists Coyote and MC Magic “Pocho” in a creative music video.

IndieFEST Film Awards Film Festival Oscar winners to hot new talentElisabeth Harris (USA), Stand UP, Speak OUT – Reproductive Rights: Know Your Rights, Doc Short – Vividly traces American women’s reproductive rights evolution, celebrating past victories and spotlighting current threats. Tightly crafted it is exceptionally well researched and rich in history. Featuring diverse voices it sheds light on pivotal moments that shaped women’s autonomy and the urgent need to defend it.

IndieFEST Film Awards Film Festival Oscar winners to hot new talentChristopher Schultz (USA), Enemy No More, Film Short – In WWII, an American soldier escapes a prison camp only to be caught by a Japanese soldier who left the war. As they bond, they ultimately discover a chance to aid each other’s journey home. Engaging plot and compelling performances by Jonathan Tanigaki (NCIS: Hawai’i), Jake B. Miller (Daisy Jones & The Six) and Anzu Lawson (Chicago Med).

IndieFEST Film Awards Film Festival Oscar winners to hot new talentAntonio Hrynchuk (Canada), Paramedics: Emergency Response, Season 7, TV Series – This thrilling series delves into Saskatoon’s paramedic world, showcasing the adrenaline-fueled 911 responses and the real life drama that can quickly unfold on any call. Raw footage and firsthand accounts immerse viewers in the high-stakes EMS world, revealing the dedication and bravery of these first responders. Fahrenheit Films

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IndieFEST Film Awards Film Festival Oscar winners to hot new talentKhatuna Vashadze (Georgia), Devil’s Paradise, Film Feature – This captivating film intertwines two parallel stories in a restaurant and a hospital room over one night. It explores complex inner worlds, relationships, and life’s profound themes with rich character development and surprising plot twists. Compelling script and performances. Stars: Rezo Chkhikvishvili, Zurab Kipshidze, Mariam Jologua.

IndieFEST Film Awards Film Festival Oscar winners to hot new talentAnthony Igra (Australia), Final Broadcast, Film Short – Australia under invasion sets the stage for a gripping saga at a military hospital. The PM’s team faces a crucial task: drafting a surrender speech. Their plans are upended by a mysterious stranger in a wheelchair with a hidden agenda. Compelling story and performances. Brendan Donoghue (Outback), Keith Robinson (Mystery Road), Allison Cratchley (Sanctum).

IndieFEST Film Awards Film Festival Oscar winners to hot new talentSteve Vilhem (Switzerland), Iceland, On the Trail of Democracy, Doc Feature (student) – Delves into the 2008 Icelandic Pots and Pans revolution, showcasing efforts to draft a new Constitution through citizen participation. The documentary, led by three students, offers colorful presentations and fresh interview perspectives, all highlighting a unique approach to democracy and the ongoing issues.

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Aaron Erol Ozlevi (Turkey), EXILE, Liberation / Social Justice / Protest
Angad Aulakh (USA), Resurrektor, Actor: Leading (Guy Kent as Paul), Direction, Casting (Michael Sanford, CSA), Ensemble Cast (Taylor Cooper, Guy Kent, Lestonja Diaz, Ella Thomas)
Anna Gerasimova (USA), The Breath of Life: Dark Matter, Original Score
Anthony Igra (Australia), Final Broadcast, Cinematography (David Gribble ACS), Original Score (Daniel Zines), Direction (Anthony Igra)
Antonio Hrynchuk (Canada), Paramedics: Emergency Response, Season 7, Direction, Editing (Ryan Malone)
Bernie Forster (Switzerland), House of Switzerland, Television – Pilot Program
Brett Eric Hoffman (USA), SALTWATERx, Disability Issues, Documentary Feature, Health / Medicine / Science
Christopher Schultz (USA), Enemy No More, Direction
Gustavo Andres Menese (Argentina), Nerd, Animation, Cinematography, Art Direction
Hudson Hillin (USA), Newman’s Block, Children / Family Programming (Student), Editing (Student), Film Short (Student), Young Filmmaker – 17 and younger

Iara Cardoso (Brazil), The Human Era, Contemporary Issues / Awareness Raising, Nature / Environment / Wildlife
Imelda O’Reilly (USA), Suspicious Minds, Women Filmmakers
Jan Miller Corran (USA), Concerto for Abigail, LGBTQ+ Theme
Jana Miley (USA), Little Issues, Film Short, Women Filmmakers
Joëlle Chesselet and Pippa Ehrlich (United Kingdom), MY MERCURY, Women Filmmakers
Justin (Marmo) Marmorstein, Marmo Films (USA), Coyote – “Pocho” featuring MC Magic, Cinematography (Cesar Withingham), Editing (Justin (Marmo) Marmorstein, Marmo Films)
Kevin Short (United Kingdom), BONNIE & CLIVE, Film Feature, Ensemble Cast, Original Score
Khatuna Vashadze (Georgia), Devil’s Paradise, Women Filmmakers, Ensemble Cast
Lukas Ratka (Austria), My Invisible Friend, Original Score (Tobias Alexander Ratka), Sound Editing / Sound Mixing (Diana Macalova)
Lynn H. Elliott (USA), Be Prepared For What?  Episode 2, THE BOY WHO EARNED HIS MAGIC, Script / Writer

Marcelo Ricardo Ortiz (Canada), Bring Back Christmas, Latin / Hispanic Filmmaker
Martin Lloyd, Anja Ramaroson and Richard Tomes (Portugal), Doll#195, Actor: Leading (Paul Hughes as Walter)
Niv Ende (Canada), Machine, Actress: Leading (Carolyn Yonge as Maya)
Robert Michael, GEEPAK Entertainment (USA), Oblivious, Ensemble Cast, Original Score (Composed by Robert Michael), Original Song (“On That Day”, featuring Brooke Weirick, composed by Robert Michael)
Roland Paul Marconi and Gary Null (USA), Sublimation Nation, Documentary Feature
Sabina Sattar (United Kingdom), Mum Said, Children / Family Programming, Original Score
Siros Kerdouni (USA), DISHONORABLE, Film Short
Tim Gray (USA), Village of Death: Oradour-sur-Glane 1944, Documentary Feature
Timur Khvan and Alexander Guryanov (Russia), Commander, Film Feature
Warren Andrew Fischer (USA), The Serena Variations, Direction, Editing, Film Short

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