A recap on Laguna Film Festival – Shorts Film



Austin Fickman and friend Lucy Hale

Austin Fickman and friend Lucy Hale who came to support her friend at the Inaugural Opening Night Laguna Film Festival

Being a film advocate I’ve been to many film festivals in Southern California. Although I must admit, that my movie going has kinda lessened now because I have three boys.
When I heard about Laguna Film Fest – A Festival of Short Films, I was like “Really? there’s a Laguna Film Fest?” And because of my curiosity I signed up for press credential to see what is all about. After all it’s only ten minutes away from my house. How convenient is that! So on Friday, October 16 at The Regency Directors Cut Cinema in Laguna Niguel, I attended the Inaugural Opening Night of Laguna Film Festival – Shorts Film. I was surprised when I was introduced to the founder Austin Fickman. Sure, they mentioned on the press release ‘founded by young filmmaker’ but I didn’t expect the founder is an 18-year-old gifted filmmaker. I was completely blown away. When I had a brief interview with him I was impressed with how confident he was but not in a boastful manner. He carried himself well with great knowledge of films but expressed himself with humility.

Laguna Film Festival

Austin Fickman Filmmaker and Founder of Laguna Film Fest

Austin Fickman Filmmaker and Founder of Laguna Film Fest

Fickman who is a senior at Laguna Beach High School came up with the idea of establishing a film festival for aspiring young filmmakers to have their film shown and judged by industry experts. I asked Fickman how did he come up with the idea? “I’ve been a filmmaker since I was eight and growing up in Laguna was such a thriving art community. And it was surprising we didn’t have a film festival yet given how large our community is. So I decided to finally time to have one.”

Jordan Tappis and Brendan Hearne

Jordan Tappis and Brendan Hearne

Cristela Alonzo

Cristela Alonzo

Lucy Hale (Pretty Little Liars) and Cristela Alonzo (producer/writer/actress) attended the Inaugural Opening Night. Lucy Hale supported her friend Austin and graciously signed autographs and greeted her fans. The festival was such a vibrant and young environment. It was so great to see young aspiring filmmakers who can be the next Ron Howard, Steven Spielberg or Martin Scorcese.

Lucy Hale with fans at the Directors Cut Cinema in Laguna Niguel

Lucy Hale with fans at the Directors Cut Cinema in Laguna Niguel

Lucy Hale Special Guest at Laguna Film Fest

Lucy Hale Special Guest at Laguna Film Fest

Lucy Hale with a fan at Laguna Film Fest

The festival included more than 60 films from the US, UK, Spain, Ireland, Sweden, even Kazakhstan and more. The short films categories were Animation, Comedy, Documentary, Drama, Experimental, Horror, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Youth Filmmaker Showcase and Film School Student Showcase. To know more about Laguna Film Fest, click here.

Abigail Spencer and Josh Pence

Abigail Spencer and Josh Pence

LtoR - Morten Forland James Oliver Vince Majot

LtoR – Morten Forland James Oliver Vince Majot

Sarah Ramos (Parenthood) and Director Joey Ally for

Sarah Ramos (Parenthood) and Director Joey Ally

The Scene at the Laguna Film Fest

The Scene at the Laguna Film Fest

Front Desk Laguna Film Fest

Front Desk Check In Laguna Film Fest

PR Staff at Laguna Film Fest

PR Staff at Laguna Film Fest

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