Burlington’s first film festival clears all the hurdles. SOLD OUT event that deserves a larger venue next year.

By Pepper Parr


January 20, 2014

There were twelve entrants to the Tottering Biped Film Short Film Festival.  They had a SOLD OUT night at the Burlington Art Centre.  The best thing to be said about the event is that it was a first for Burlington and that it took place.

The Art Centre put a lot of their resources behind the event providing the space, the printing and the framing of the Award certificates and selling the tickets.  They topped all this off with a $50 award to the winners in each of the categories.

Christopher Giroux chatting with Katie.

The venue was small, additional chairs had to be added to the space.  Trevor Copp, the dancer who came up with the idea for a short film festival proudly announces that attendance was 110% – a total of 126 seats.  Small, but a good start.  Copp didn’t do this all by himself – he worked with Christopher Giroux who brought a background in short film to the table

Angela Paparizo talks with Trevor Copp founder of the Tottering Biped Short Film Festival.we

It was evident that more was needed in the way of volunteer support; some serious help on the technical side will be welcome next time out as well.

The winners in the six categories were:

Best Local Film: Wanderlust
Best Screenplay: Tomas Street, Kid’s Town
Best Director(s):Freddy Chavez Olmos, Shervin Shoghian for their film “Shhh”
Best Dark Film: Tasha And Friends
Best Picture: Yeah Rite
People’s Choice: Yeah Rite

Best Performer: Elizabeth Stuart of the film “Promise”

Michael Penny on the set of Yeah Rite, a short film on Exorcism – sort of.  Winner of the Best Film and the People’s Choices Awards.

Yeah Rite, was the People`s Choice and the winner of the Burlington Gazette award for the Best Picture. 

The Dark Film Award had a special sponsorship. Jim Riley provided money to pay the screening fee for all the films entered.

Judging of the 12 short films, that ranged from 4 minutes to just over 11 minutes, was done by Angela Paparizo and Nathan Fleet, an accomplished award-winning film maker out of Hamilton  and Mayor Goldring.  Quite why the Mayor was used as a judge is hard to understand.  Other than being a nice guy who gets out to the odd movie like the rest of us the Mayor brings zip to the judging of a very specialized film genre.

Paparizo serves as the  city hall staff member who manages cultural issues within the Parks and Recreation department at city hall.  The only reason to put the Mayor on the judging panel had to be to curry favour with city hall.

The arts have to make it on their own merit – which they have certainly done in the past year.  The creation of the Arts and Culture Collective brought the depth and quality of the arts community in Burlington to the surface and to the attention of city council that now has an opportunity to pump some money into the sector.

Burlington built the Performing Arts Centre, to the chagrin of too many people in Burlington.  A building alone is not an arts community – it takes artists to bring life to the stages.  That`s where people like Trevor Copp and the Collective come in.  They will make it happen and in the process upgrade the level of cultural sophistication in the city.

They are however, never going to develop the Mayor`s film appreciation to the point where he can serve as a viable judge.

Background links:

Best Film Teaser

Best film – full video – 6 minutes long.


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4 comments to Burlington’s first film festival clears all the hurdles. SOLD OUT event that deserves a larger venue next year.

  • Trevor Copp

    You’re a curious cat Pepper. You are generous with your funds – thank you for the sponsorship – and your criticism. Odd, given that you weren’t there. Hope to see you next year. Your sponsorship of the event made a huge difference to the whole event.

  • Jason

    Great event. A few hiccups but didn’t take away from an enjoyable time. We felt it was very successful for the first year. See you next year!

  • K. G

    Awesome Evening !

  • I wish I had known about this! Maybe next year it will be a bigger venue and event and I might go! I’d love to see all these films!