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Erica Galindo
Celebrating Food, Faith and Family
Last edited on: November 19, 2014.

Award Nominations for the 12th Annual 168 Film Festival were announced today by 168 Film Founder and Executive Director, John David Ware.  Filmmakers have delivered a 10-minute short film based on a randomly assigned scripture, in hopes of winning a share of $20,000 in cash and prizes.

Films will screen at the Aratani Japanese Theater, Downtown Los Angeles on Friday Sept. 12 from 3:00 pm – 9:00 pm and Saturday Sept. 13 from10:00 am – 5:00 pm. Saturday includes a Red Carpet ceremony packed with stars from 5:30pm – 7:00pm and the Awards Show at 7:30pm.

The top-nominated film is medical thriller Tula Tula with 12 noms. Diane Vermooten’s Media Village Productions from South Africa is the returning nominations champ (Her film Freedom Road won 5 awards in 2013).

“Freedom Road” won 6 awards at 168 in 2013; Photo Courtesy of Media Village.

Rick Marcus’ hardworking drama The Ranch and Daniel Furukawa’s baby shower drama What Showers Bring grabbed ten noms apiece.

Eight noms each go to space-romp comedy Skywatch: The Duster of Doom by John DeVries, Gary Zelasko’s surf drama Caught Inside and Jason Rodriguez’ cowboys and indigents western drama Ride On.

Five noms each go to four films, including crime drama Lake of Fire by Andrew Thorn from Australia, not too sweet drama Insulin by Jonathan Moch from California, well-tied-up comedy The Parcel by April Manor, and father-son drama Cipta Gelar (In The Open) by Frederick Wattimena from Indonesia.

The 168 Film Festival draws people of faith from all walks of life to celebrate Christian entertainment; Photo Courtesy of 168 Film Festival.

Four films of note have 4 noms each including Joseph Robinson’s upstart student musical drama Ayaan (“Gift” in Arabic), culinary dramedy The Mantle of Granny Belle by Travis Grenke and troubled child drama We Choose You by Michael Head from Texas, and fantasy-family drama The Beautiful Exchange by Andrew Garces from New York.

Four films collide for 3 noms, including no-tissues-needed comedy The Nose Job by Christopher Shawn Shaw, Millena Gay and Obba Babatunde’s bullies and bows drama Clarissa’s Gift, romantic speed-dating comedy Finding Her by Jessica Chaney from Tennessee and electric dramedy Unplugged by James Runcorn.

Skateboarding drama Crossing Over by Henry Wong and social-justice-minded drama McKenzie’s Gifts by Robert Springer III each received one nomination.

The poster for McKenzie’s Gift; Photo Courtesy of Storyline Productions.

Nominees for “Non-Speed” entries include Write of Passage Spotlight Films (made from the best of 168’s screenwriting competition) Polyphony by Aaron Ybarra and Stuck by Aaron Kamp. Documentaries include God’s Glory Through Glass on stained glass stories by Ray Blumhorst and living with disability exploration Identity by Arthur Delgado.

KidVids nominees (made for ages 5-15) include Mark Baird’s cuddly zombie film Gift of Grace and Jay Hanan’s kid in a candy store romp My Favorite Gift. Student Film nominees include Rachel Martin for the special needs story DG.

An illustrious panel of jurors has been tapped for this year’s 168 Film Project. The announcement comes from 168’s Executive Director and Founder, John David Ware.

168’s Executive Director and Founder, John David Ware; Photo Courtesy of 168 Film Festival.

“We are very proud of this year’s panel. The jurors have an amazing array of talent with the balanced insight necessary to judge the art of storytelling,” said Ware. “Most of our filmmakers are unknown, however their ability to excel at this pace, under the 168 schedule, will not go unnoticed by our panel of pros.”

The 168 Film Festival 2014 Jury includes:

Sean Patrick McNamara, who has directed Academy Award winning actors like Helen Hunt, Marisa Tomei, Jon Voight, Mira Sorvino as well as James Woods, Shia LaBeouf and Jessica Alba. Sean served as writer, director and producer on feature film, Soul Surfer.

Brian Bird In addition to Hallmark’s When Calls the Heart, Brian’s 30-year career includes writing and producing credits such as feature film, Captive, the true story of the 2005 Atlanta hostage crisis, Gametime for NBC (2012),  Not Easily Broken, adapted from the novel by T.D. Jakes and 250 episodes of network TV.

Brian Bird, Writer/Executive Producer; Photo Courtesy of 168 Film Festival.

Leilani Downer has written for several network television sit-coms including A Different World for NBC and Good News for UPN. She was Executive Story Editor for ABC’s Growing Pains and a producer on Hangin’ with Mr. Cooper (ABC), Fresh Prince of Bel Air (NBC) and Sister, Sister (WB).

Bill Ewing Over 15 years at Columbia Pictures, Bill supervised production of more than 100 feature films as Senior Vice President of Production Administration including Awakenings, A League of Their Own, Groundhog Day, Age of Innocence, Air Force One, Men in Black and Spiderman.

Gary Skeen Hall is Sr. V.P. of Post Production for 20th Century Fox TV where he oversees post-production for scripted network and cable series including 24, The Simpson, Bones, and Homeland.

Casting Director Beverly Holloway; Photo Courtesy of IMDB.

Beverly Holloway is a Casting Director who has worked with Jim Caviezel, James Garner, Abigail Breslin, Dermot Mulroney, and Kelsey Grammar. Her credits include Moms’ Night Out, and The Ultimate Gift.

Naima Lett loves helping people find their purpose and follow their dreams while deepening their faith. She’s a pastor, producer, award-winning actor, and author of Confessions of a Hollywood Christian.

Alan Miller received his calling to the ministry when he was a freshman in high school. After pursuing a BA and a MA in Biblical and Theological studies, he began doing ministry in the heart of Los Angeles at the Salvation Army.

Fred Shaheen is Vice President of Acquisitions for family-entertainment network, INSP, where he oversees the acquisition and licensing of content. Shaheen spent thirteen years in Hollywood producing television.



Tickets are on sale now at the 168 Project Official Website!


Don’t miss SCH’s coverage of the 168 Film Festival:

Gear up for the event and catch the Teen Icon Takes “Role Model” Role Seriously at 168 Festival

Get the latest festival news and read Four-Time Emmy Winner Michael Learned Among the Star-Studded Line Up of 168 Film Festival


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