Science Fiction + Fantasy Short Film Festival

A not-to-be missed annual juried festival showcasing animated and live-action science fiction and fantasy films from around the globe.

Director Bios

Johnny Barrington

Johnny Barrington director Tumult short film


Born in Inverness in 1977, Barrington trained at Glasgow School of Art, and Göteborg School of Photography and Film in Sweden. He has written and directed four short films and is currently developing his first feature film, Aberdeen Angus, and a television series, Antarctica. He lives and works in Glasgow.

Kyra Buschor

Kyra Buschor director Zing short film


Buschor was born in 1987 in Switzerland. She grew up in Weinfelden and went to the Liceo Artistico, an art school/high school in Zurich. After graduation, Buschor worked for two years at the Digital Frame Studio in Stuttgart as an intern. Since summer 2009, she has been studying animation at the Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg.

San Charoenchai

Frankie Rulez!!!

As a young Asian kid who moved constantly, Charoenchai drew nonstop, imagining comic book stories and characters, and desperately trying to transmit them through pencil and paper. Success varied, but the obsession with storytelling remained constant throughout his school years, be it in animation, graphic design, or interactive media. Today he is based in New York City: a senior 3D artist by day, short filmmaker by night—itching to create something fun and exciting. Charoenchai focuses on two goals as a filmmaker: Be creative. Be entertaining.

Joey Ciccoline

Joey Ciccoline director 88:88 short film


88:88 is Ciccoline’s first narrative short film. He previously maintained a small freelancing career creating music videos that were featured on CMT and at SXSW, and directing a comedy web series.

Cynthia Collins

Cynthia Collins director Zing short film


Collins was born in 1987 in Crailsheim. She was very interested in film and the arts from a young age and was especially inspired by animated films. She knew that she wanted to study at the Filmakademie Baden-Würrtemberg. After graduation, she completed two internships in film/media and animation, including at Studio Film Bilder in Stuttgart in. Since the fall of 2009, she has studied animation at the Filmakademie Baden-Würrtemberg.

Robert Dastoli and James Dastoli

Robert Dastoli James Dastoli director Cats in Space short film

Cats in Space

Born in Stamford, Connecticut, identical twins James and Robert Dastoli began co-directing movies in high school. After graduating from the University of Central Florida's BFA film program, the duo moved to Los Angeles. In the last twelve years, the Dastoli brothers have directed over 40 short films.

Cole Drumb

Cole Drumb director Posthuman short film


As a writer, director, and producer, Drumb has over a decade of film and video production experience that includes directing and producing Dominoes, a self-funded independent feature film that premiered at SIFF in 2003. Drumb began his production career as a production assistant and has since worked in nearly every production job available—with the possible exception of Greensman. Drumb’s education includes training in 3D animation, which led to his work as a character animator on multiple video games. PostHuman is the culmination of his years of experience in multiple fields, and explodes onscreen like a psychotronic dream.

Minka Farthing-Kohl

Minka Farthing-Kohl director Cheap Extermination short film

Cheap Extermination

Farthing-Kohl has lived throughout Latin and North America. He currently resides in New York City.

Lorcan Finnegan

Lorcan Finnegan director Foxes short film


Finnegan was born in 1979 in Dublin, Ireland. After studying graphic design in Dublin, he moved to London to work as a motion designer and later as an editor and director. In 2004 Finnegan returned to Dublin and set up Lovely Productions to make his own films. Since then, he has written and directed several award-winning short films, music videos, and commercials. Foxes is his fourth short film for the Irish Film Board, which won the Philips Short Film Award at the 2012 Irish Film and Television Academy (IFTA). He is currently developing his first feature project The Estate with the Irish Film Board.

Stefan Leuchtenberg

Stefan Leuchtenberg director A Lost and Found Box of Human Sensation short film

A Lost and Found Box of Human Sensation

Leuchtenberg has worked as a freelancer in the field of illustration since graduating from high school in 1999. From 2001 to 2008 he studied at the Augsburg University of Applied Sciences and at the Animation Department of the Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design in Budapest.

After graduating in 2006 with a diploma in graphic design, and 2008 with an MA in interactive media systems, he founded Dancing Squirrel, a studio for the conception and development of interactive media and animation.

Trevin Matcek

Trevin Matcek director You Me We short film

You, Me + We

Born in a small Texas town, Matcek graduated from USC’s School of Cinematic Arts. His film Sylvia won Best Short at Houston Worldfest, played at over a dozen festivals worldwide, and aired on Showtime. He has directed and edited commercials and music videos including "The District Sleeps Alone Tonight" for American electronic musical group The Postal Service. His feature script Things We’ve Made (currently in development) was a finalist for IFP Emerging Narrative, Film Independent’s Directors, Screenwriters, Producers Labs. He recently wrote and directed the season finale for the ITVS/PBSFUTURESTATES series titled Life Begins at Rewirement.

Kevin McTurk

Kevin McTurk director The Narrative of Victor Karloch

The Narrative of Victor Karloch

McTurk is a professional creature effects artist, model maker, cinematographer, and puppeteer who has worked in the effects industry for 20 years. After moving to Los Angeles in 1992, he began his career in special make-up effects at Stan Winston Studio, working on Batman Returns, Interview with the Vampire, and the Jurassic Park films. He has worked for many effects companies over the years, including Jim Henson Creature Shop, Amalgamated Dynamics, Spectral Motion, and Weta Workshop in New Zealand (where he worked on the films King Kong and the gory comedy Black Sheep—in which he also played the Weresheep creature). McTurk is currently living in Los Angeles and continues to work in the effects industry.

Ged Murray

Ged Murry director Small Time short film

Small Time

Murray is a graduate of the National Film School in Ireland. His graduate film, Bleeding Love, won numerous awards both in Ireland and abroad. The follow-up film, Hell Cat, continues its festival circuit having recently screened at Fantastic Fest in Austin. Small Time is his latest short film and has already taken Best Comedy at the Fastnet Short Film Festival in Ireland, a first at the Rhode Island International Film Festival, and has been screened at the prestigious Palm Springs International Film Festival. His other work has been nominated at the Social Media Awards 2012, and Hotpressmagazine referred to “La La Land” as their “favourite Irish music video in years.”

Dale Nicholls

Dale Nicholls director Evelyn short film


Nicholls has worked the gamut: in restaurants, for public access television, and in forest clearing. In his spare time he makes short films and watches long ones. He recently produced an award-winning short, The Particulars, for Ayse Altinok, a Turkish filmmaker whose films have screened at Cannes, Melbourne, and others. Dale is currently developing two feature projects.

Bridget Palardy

Bridget Palardy director OowieWanna short film


Palardy got her start producing online videos for Nylon Magazine where she had the opportunity to shoot incredible women like Kim Gordon, Allison Mosshart, and Betsey Johnson who continue to inspire her work today. Since then, Palardy has shot and directed fashion and music videos which have been featured on MTV and UK MTV, and screened at the LA Film Festival. Her narrative work has screened at numerous festivals including SXSW and Bend Film Festival, and her documentary short, Middletown B-Boys, received the Jesse Thompkins III Award of Distinction. She was recently selected to participate in the Directing Workshop for Women at the American Film Institute through which she directed this fuzzy beast of a short film.

Greg Pope

Greg Pope director Giant Monster Playset short film

Giant Monster Playset

Pope is a filmmaker, musician, and art director. As owner of Octoberville Creative LLC, he has produced several award-winning commercial and corporate films. His pop songs have been featured on radio and prime time TV shows such as Dawson’s Creek, Last Comic Standing, and America’s Next Top Model. His short film Giant Monster Playset has appeared at numerous film festivals, including the Nashville Film Festival and Comicon, San Diego.

John Roberts

John Roberts director The Wheel short film

The Wheel

Roberts is a filmmaker and animator out of Milwaukee, WI. His work has screened at festivals internationally, including Festival de Cannes in 2011 and 2012.

Brad Schaffer

Brad Schaffer director Thumb Snatchers From the Moon Cocoon short film

Thumb Snatchers From the Moon Cocoon

Schaffer has been making hand-made, off beat movies since the age of 10. He graduated from CalArts Experimental Animation program in 2011.

Thierry Uyttenhoven

Thierry Uyttenhoven director Motorhome short film


Uyttenhoven started his career as an actor, but following a traineeship at the Academy of Visual Arts of Molenbeek, he took a seat behind the camera. His organizational and people skills were spotted early on, and thanks to hard work and the task of running a restaurant, he developed reactivity, anticipation, and a sense of responsibility. Since 2009, he has written, produced, and directed four short films. His last short film Motorhome won a prize at the Brussels International Fantastic Film Festival. The adventure continues for Motorhome with seven other selections in international festivals.

Martin Wallner

Martin Wallner director A Lost and Found Box of Human Sensation short film

A Lost and Found Box of Human Sensation

Wallner studied at the Augsburg University of Applied Sciences and at the University of Newcastle/Australia, graduating with diplomas in computer science and graphic design. He also has an MA in Interactive media systems. In 2008 he founded Dancing Squirrel, a studio for conceptual media development with a focus on animation. He won the 2008 Silver Prize in the category of short film at the PAGE International Screenwriting Awards. A Lost and Found Box of Human Sensation marks his directorial debut.

Alek Wasilewski

Alek Wasilewski director Lucky Day Forever short film

Lucky Day Forever

Born in 1984, Wasilewski is an animator/writer/director who also works with photography, graphic art, and comics. His animations have received several million online views on professional and amateur animation websites, and have been shown successfully at festivals, screenings, TV shows, seminars, galleries, and concerts all over the world, including Poland, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, the UK, Hong Kong, Bulgaria, Lithuania, Greece, Macedonia, Brazil, Australia, and the US.

Matt Westrup

Matt Westrup director The Gate short film

The Gate

Securing an agent before graduating from art school, Westrup quickly found success as a freelance commercial illustrator, specializing in character development and design for clients such as Hasbro and Mars Confectionery. A natural progression into digital visual effects and animation quickly led to freelance employment as a Visual FX Artist with some of London’s leading CG houses. During this time Westrup also completed the ambitious animated short film, Mek-Annoyed, which went on to win an award at the Copenhagen 3D Festival. Although offers of employment from VFX houses such as Café FX and Lucas Film Animation quickly followed, Westrup already had his sights set on directing, and he duly approached his colleague Spencer Friend of Joyrider Films about producing a short film that he was developing.

Written and directed by Westrup, (who also completed all of the visual effects),The Gate gained a whirlwind of Hollywood interest as soon as it was finished in late 2011. A deal for a feature length version of the short has since been made with Wayfare Entertainment in the US and at the time of this writing has won Best Short Film at the AEAF Festival as well as being been shortlisted for the LA Shorts Film Festival.

Juan Pablo Zaramella

Juan Pablo Zaremella director Luminaris short film


Zaramella’s independent shorts have received awards from all over the world. In 2010, Annecy International Animation Festival presented a special program featuring a selection of his works. His short film Luminaris won the Audience Award and the Fipresci Award at the Annecy International Animation Film Festival in 2011, and is included in the Oscars shortlist for Best Animated Short. Filmography: Luminaris (2011), HotCorn! (2011), At the Opera (2010), Lapsus (2007), Sexteens (2006), Journey to Mars (2004), The Glove (2001), and The Challenge to Death (2001).