João Gonzalez’s Ice Merchants (Portugal, France, UK) has won the annual Short of the Year as voted on by the members of the Short Film Conference. The Short Film Conference is an organization dedicated to championing the short film medium and uniting the global short film community and it’s over 100 strong membership taking part in voting for the Short of the Year.
Ice Merchants is an animation which follows a father and his son jump with a parachute from their vertiginous cold house, attached to a cliff, to go to the village on the ground, far away where they sell the ice they produce daily.
With an air of the surreal, Gonzalez’s film is a tender evocation of familial love which is breathtakingly beautiful, wonderfully inventive and achingly human.
After premiering at Cannes’ Critics Week in 2022 (where it won the Leitz Cine Discovery Prize), the film went on to be nominated for a European Film Award in 2022 and has screened at numerous festival, amongst them Toronto, Vila Do Conde and Clermont-Ferrand where it is screening in the festival’s International Competition. The film is also a contender for a 2023 Academy Award in the Best Short Animation Category.
The SFC Short Of The Year 2022 award is sponsored by Figari International Short Film Fest which will invite Gonzalez to attend the next edition of their festival. For more information on the Figari International Short Film Fest visit HERE.
On winning the award, the Portuguese born João Gonzalez said:
“I’m over the moon with this exciting news! It makes me really happy to know that the film resonated with the members of the Short Film Conference, especially among so many amazing shorts from the last year that I’m so honoured to share the selection with! I want to dedicate this to the film’s insanely talented and hardworking team, for making all of this possible!”
The film was voted on by the membership of the Short Film Conference, with a worldwide network of festival representatives, programmers, agencies, distributors and journalists from 42 countries and 6 continents.
The Short Film Conference has been in existence since 1970 as a non-profit association and the only international organization seeking to unite the global short film community. It’s activities range from organising industry events and the annual Short Film Conference to monitoring and researching the short film industry, informing its professionals & lobbying for the rights of short films and their creators.
The chairman of the SFC Board, Laurence Boyce said:
“Ice Merchants – which is still continuing to make waves on the festival circuit – has resonated with audiences wherever it has screened and has obviously also struck a chord with the membership. Whilst it was an extremely difficult decision, with a number brilliant short from the past year also in contention, we’re happy that the talented animator João Gonzalez and his hard working team are able to add the Short of the Year to its many plaudits. The SFC would also like to extend our thanks to all the members who contributed, and showed the richness and diversity of the world of short film.”
For more information on the Short Film Conference go to https://www.shortfilmconference.com/
Ice Merchants is a co-production of Portugal, France and the UK. It is directed by João Gonzalez and the producer is Bruno Caetano. It is a Co-Production COLA, Royal College of Art and Wildstream. It is distributed by Agência – Portuguese Short Film Agency (https://www.agencia.curtas.pt/home/)
Photo credits: Yellow Bread.