Looking to fill out the less-prominent corners of that winners ballot for your Oscar Watch party? Have no idea what’s happening in those short-film categories? Maybe Carter Pilcher can help.
Pilcher is Chief Executive of ShortsTV, the TV network that shows a library of some 5,000 short films. On top of that, Pilcher is a member of the Motion Picture Academy, specifically the branch that oversees the selection of nominees for the live-action shorts and both animation categories, feature and short film.
And for 13 years now, Pilcher has been building what’s become an Oscar-season tradition, the theatrical release of the Oscar Nominated Short Films. Pilcher’s team, working with long-time partner Magnolia Films, work with the Academy to compile all the live-action and animated nominated shorts, and exhibit them in theaters and later through online distributors.
The awards-season release gives these short films a chance to be seen on the big screen, the way their creators intended. This year’s release debuted Feb. 9 in dozens of theaters around the United States, grossing $700,000. In the IFC Center theater, the compilation proved to be one of the most popular ever in the history of that New York film mecca, grossing $50,000. At this rate, this year’s release stands a good chance of passing last year’s record $2.83 million gross.
For those who can’t make it to theaters, they can still see the compilation through online distributors such as Apple’s iTunes Store, Google Play, Vimeo, Frontier, Amazon, and Verizon, as well as on-demand/VOD platforms for various cable and satellite Pay-TV providers. Those become available Feb. 27.
Pilcher and I sat down for a conversation about the long road that each of the nominees took to the Oscars, some of the projects that particularly caught his eye, and more. With luck, you’ll pick up some cues from this Academy insider about the likely favorites to mark on your own Oscar winners ballot. If nothing else, you’ll at least get a chance to see of the year’s most important, if brief, cinematic achievements.
To hear the .MP3 version of our conversation, click here:
To hear the higher-quality.M4A version of my conversation with Carter, click here: