CHICAGO – The Illinois Film Office (IFO) today announced the winner of Shortcuts, Illinois’ annual short film contest. The winning film—Amorak Productions’ The Painter—will screen at 6 p.m. tonight, Tuesday Oct. 15, as part of the 2013 Chicago International Film Festival city/state short films program at AMC River East 21 in Chicago.
Filmed at Columbia College’s Media Production Center and featuring a cast of Chicago South Side youth, The Painter portrays a boy who lives in a world where violence surrounds him and his sole means of survival is to escape through his art. Amarok worked with two highly-regarded Chicago organizations that help children living in high-risk neighborhoods: UCAN and Youth Guidance. Children from both organizations played roles in front and behind the camera.
"Today’s youth are tomorrow’s leaders," Governor Pat Quinn said. "These young people show the world that despite the past, youth can lead communities toward peaceful coexistence."
The Painter was written and directed by Columbia College Chicago faculty member Kevin Cooper, produced by Deanna Cooper and executive produced by Emil Arab. Shortcuts was designed to encourage filmmakers across the state to explore their creativity and showcase their skills.
"In its sixth year, Shortcuts entries were exciting and innovative," said IFO Managing Director Betsy Steinberg. "Illinois is rich with talented filmmakers and storytellers."
Illinois’ film industry generated $184 million in spending in 2012 and created 2,200 full-time equivalent jobs in Illinois. In addition to several blockbuster films and a thriving commercial production industry, 2013 has thus far been a record-breaking year for television production. A record six dramatic TV series are filming in Illinois this year, pouring an estimated $150 million into the Illinois economy.
The Illinois Film Office is dedicated to advancing Illinois’ reputation as a world-class film destination. The office actively pursues film projects and encourages the training and hiring of Illinois residents. More information on the Shortcuts contest and the Illinois Film Office can be found at www.illinoisfilm.biz