2011 Oscar Nominated Short Films (Live Action & Animated)


The Circle Cinema will be presenting the 2011 Oscar Nominated Short films starting Friday, February 18.  The Oscar-nominated live-action and animated shorts are split in two separate programs, check calender for show times. English subtitles if language is other than English and NR. Combo Ticket are available.

Animated Program – 85 min.

Madagascar, Carnet de Voyage

Let’s Pollute

The Gruffalo

The Lost Thing

Day & Night

URS (extra film)

The Cow That Wanted to Be a Hamburger (extra film)

Live Action Program – 106 min.

The Confession

Wish 143

Na Wewe

The Crush

God of Love





Director/Writer: Teddy Newton

Producer: Kevin Reher

When Day, a sunny fellow, encounters Night, a stranger of distinctly darker moods, sparks fly! Day and Night are frightened and suspicious of each other at first, and quickly get off on the wrong foot. But as they discover each other’s unique qualities – and come to realize that each of them offers a different window onto the same world – the friendship helps both to gain a new perspective.

Director’s Biography:


Teddy Newton came to Pixar in July of 2000 to work on Pixar’s sixth feature film, The Incredibles and has since contributed his considerable character design skills to many of Disney•Pixar’s award-winning feature and short films, including Ratatouille, Your Friend the Rat and Presto.  He was also instrumental in the creation of the “End Titles” of The Incredibles and Ratatouille and is frequently cast as a voice in Disney•Pixar films, including the role of Chatter Telephone in the feature film Toy Story 3.

For his Disney•Pixar directorial debut, Newton teamed with producer Kevin Reher on Day & Night, a new short film released with Toy Story 3 on June 18, 2010.

Prior to coming to Pixar, Newton worked in the story department and in character design at Warner Bros. on Iron Giant.  He also served as writer/producer for the independent feature film The Trouble with Lou.

Newton is inspired by the drawings of Al Hirschfeld and early Warner Bros animation. He grew up in Dana Point, California, and attended California Institute of the Arts (Cal Arts).


Directors: Jakob Schuh, Max Lange

Writers: Julia Donaldson, Max Lang, Jakob Schuh

Producers: Michael Rose, Martin Pope

Cast: Helena Bonham Carter, Rob Brydon, Robbie Coltrane, James Corden, John Hurt, Tom Wilkinson

The magical tale of a mouse who takes a walk through the woods in search of a nut. Encountering three predators who all wish to eat him a fox, an owl and a snake the plucky mouse has to use his wits to survive, creating an imaginary monster who then turns out to be only too real.

Directors Biography:


Jakob Schuh was born in Munich in 1976, and after his school graduation in 1995, he first studied in the department of dramaturgy at the LMU in Munich. From 1996 to 2003, Jakob Schuh was a student in the department of direction/animation at the Film Academy Baden-Württemberg; parallel to this, in 1996 he studied illustration as a fellowship-holder at the Summer Academy of Fine Arts in Salzburg, and in 1997 he attended the master’s class of painting and experimental animation at the College of Applied Arts in Vienna. Jakob Schuh has been involved in various animation film productions since 1995, and has worked as a caricaturist and illustrator for the Süddeutsche Zeitung; he has been a shareholder in Studio Soi GmbH & Co. KG since 2003.

Max Lang studied animation at the prestigious Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg in Germany. Whilst there he worked on numerous productions as director, character designer, animator and storyboard artist. He was co-director of the animated trailer which launched the 2008 Cartoon Forum held in Ludwigsburg, Germany and has worked on several productions with Studio Soi. The Gruffalo is his first commercial film as director.


Director/Writer/Producer: Geefwee Boedoe


Cast: Jim Thornton

In the spirit of 50’s & 60’s educational films, ‘Let’s Pollute’ is a modern satire on how pollution is our heritage and keeps our economy growing strong, while instructing us how to be better polluters for a better blighted tomorrow.

Director’s Biography:

Upon graduation from CalArts in 1988 Geefwee Boedoe has worked as an animator, and in story and visual development for Pixar, Disney Feature Animation, ILM, DreamWorks, and others.

The Opening Title Sequence to “Monsters, Inc.” which received high critical acclaim was conceived, storyboarded, and designed by Mr. Boedoe, who also directed the animation.

Since 2002 Geefwee Boedoe has been pursuing an independent career as a film maker, designer and writer/illustrator of children’s books. In 2004 his first children’s book, “Arrowville,” won a Ruben Award from the National Cartoonists Society and was voted a 10 best Illustrated Children’s Book by the New York Times.

In 2006 he began work on his first independent film. Over three years in the making, “Let’s Pollute” was completed late in 2009, and has been slowly picking up positive attention and momentum in film festival worldwide.

Geefwee Boedoe lives in the San Francisco Bay Area, with his wife and daughter.


Directors/Writers: Andrew Ruhemann, Shaun Tan

Producer: Sophie Byrne


Cast: Tim Minchin

A boy discovers a bizarre looking creature while out collecting bottle tops at the beach. Realising it is lost, he tries to find out who owns it or where it belongs, but is met with indifference from everyone else, who barely notice its presence, each unwilling to entertain this uninvited interruption to their day to day lives. For reasons he does not explain, the boy empathises with the creature, and sets out to find a ‘place’ for it.

About Passion Pictures Australia:

Passion Pictures Australia was established in 2004 by award-winning
animation producer Sophie Byrne and is an associate company of the
Oscar-winning Passion Pictures (UK), one of Europe’s leading independent production studios.


Director’s Biography:

Andrew Ruhemann is the owner and executive producer of Passion Pictures, which he established in 1987 as a production company supplying animation and special effects. Previously he worked as a producer at the Richard Williams Studio, makers of the award winning animation for the feature film “Who Framed Roger Rabbit?” (dir. Robert Zemeckis)

From its early beginnings Passion Pictures is now one of Europe’s leading independent film production companies representing over 30 leading directors from all over the world. The company is active in commercials and music video production, including the animated band Gorillaz. Recent credits include spectacular animated sequences for the launch of The Beatles: Rock Band game (Harmonix and MTV) and Compare the Market featuring Alexsandr the Russian meerkat was placed number one in the Top 10 Commercials of the Year (2009) in Campaign Magazine. The company has studios in London and Paris, and a new office in New York which opened in 2009.

Passion Pictures also has an award winning film and television department specializing in documentary, which Andrew runs with business partner John Battsek. Their first film the feature documentary One Day In September (dir: Kevin McDonald 2000) was the winner of an Academy Award in 2000. Since then they have produced many more award winning films and will premiere two new films at the Sundance Film Festival in January 2010.

Andrew travels all over the world for the company searching for new talent and developing new markets for Passion Pictures’ work. The Lost Thing is Andrew’s directorial debut. The animated film which he has co-directed with Shaun Tan (who wrote and illustrated the book upon which the film is based) was produced by Passion Pictures Australia and in association with Screen Australia and will be released in 2010.

Shaun Tan was born in 1974 and grew up in the northern suburbs of Perth, Western Australia. In school he became known as the ‘good drawer’ which partly compensated for always being the shortest kid in every class. He graduated from the University of WA in 1995 with joint honours in Fine Arts and English Literature, and currently works full time as a freelance artist and author in


Shaun began drawing and painting images for science fiction and horror stories in small-press magazines as a teenager, and has since become best known for illustrated books that deal with social, political and historical subjects through surreal, dream-like imagery. Books such as The Rabbits, The Red Tree, The Lost Thing and the acclaimed wordless novel The Arrival have been widely translated throughout Europe, Asia and South America, and enjoyed by readers of all ages.

Shaun has also worked as a theatre designer, and worked as a concept artist for the films Horton Hears a Who and Pixar’s WALL-E. He is currently directing a short film with Passion Pictures Australia; his most recently published book is Tales from Outer Suburbia.


Director: Bastien Dubois

Writer: Bastien Dubois

Producer: Ron Dyens, Aurélia Prévieu

This film is a journey diary that redraws the trip of a European traveller confronted with Famadihana customs. As pages of a diary turn, colorful pencil sketches come to life, revealing the majestic rolling landscapes of Madagascar, and acquainting the audience to the people of the Malagasy culture.

Director’s Biography:

Bastien Dubois was born in 1983. After graduating with a degree in Infography Direction from Supinfocom Valenciennes in France, he gained experience creating web sites and video game animation. As a travel lover, he discovered Madagascar and decided to direct an animated short film about the island.



Director/Writer/Producer: Bill Plympton

Producer: Biljana Labovic

This is a children’s fable about the power of advertising, the meaning of life, and ultimately the test of a mother’s life.


URS Germany/10 MIN

Director/Writer: Moritz Mayerhofer

Producer: Stina McNicholas

For many years Urs has had to look after his aging mother. But now he sets out for a dangerous journey: He carries his mother up a mountain to find a better place for both of them. But she wants to stay at home.



Director: Tanel Toom

Writer: Caroline Bruckner

Producer: Emily Williams


Cast: Aran Bell, Joe Eales, Lewis Howlett, James Simmons

Quiet and sincere 9-year-old Sam is worried about making his first confession. His conscience is clear, therefore he cannot hope for any relief from the experience. He and his friend Jacob decide to remedy that situation, but their initially innocent prank turns unexpectedly tragic.

Director’s Biography:


Originally from Estonia, Tanel was born in Tallinn 1982. He studied filmmaking at the Tallinn University, which he graduated, with a BA in 2005. After that, he was working as a commercials director and in 2008 he completed his fourth short film The Second Coming which was premiered at the Venice Film Festival. The apocalyptical war drama has since been screened at numerous film festivals and won several awards, including the Best European Short at the Archipelago International Film Festival. The same year, he decided to continue his studies at the National Film and TV School in England. He graduated from the NFTS with an MA in 2010 and shortly after that his diploma film The Confession won the Student Academy Award® in foreign film category. Now it’s nominated for Oscar® in Live Action Short Film category.

At the moment, Tanel is working in UK and Estonia and developing his first feature projects. He has a passion for darker stories that speak to the hearts as well as the mind. He loves to impact the audience – whether with fear, laughter or bittersweet pain.


THE CRUSH Ireland/15 MIN

Director/Writer: Michael Creagh

Producer: Damon Quinn


Cast: Charlie Bonner, Neilí Conroy, Oran Creagh, Rory Keenan, Olga Wehrly

Ardal Travis is in love. There’s just one problem. He’s an 8 year old schoolboy and the object of his affection is his Second Class teacher, Miss Purdy. But when her boyfriend arrives on the scene Ardal is heartbroken. His reaction, though, is a little unexpected. He challenges Miss Purdy’s boyfriend to a duel. To the death.

Director’s Biography:


Michael Creagh was born in Belfast. He received a degree in design at Belfast College before moving to Dublin to follow a career in advertising. After 12 years as an art director he has been trying to break into both films and commercials. The Crush is his debut short film.


Director/Writer: Luke Matheny

Producers: Gigi Demant, Ryan Silbert, Stefanie Walmsley


Cast: Luke Matheny, Marian Brock, Christopher Hirsh, Emily Young, Miguel Rosales

Lounge-singing darts champion Raymond Goodfellow finds his prayers are answered — literally — when he receives a mysterious package of passion-inducing darts. The catch is that the one woman he loves — Kelly, a drummer in his band — is already in love with Ray’s best friend Fozzie, the guitarist in the band. But when Ray uses the darts in a loony scheme to resolve this strange romantic triangle, he learns a surprising lesson about unrequited love and discovers his own place in the universe. Romance is in the air in this bohemian charmer.

Director’s Biography:


Luke Matheny is a Brooklyn, N.Y.-based director, writer, actor and professor.

His short film “God of Love” – a comedy about a lounge-singing darts champion who receives a package of love-inducing darts – was winner of the Student Academy Award; special jury recognition at Aspen ShortsFest; as well as first prize and the King Award for Screenwriting at the NYU First Run Film Festival. The film has screened and won awards at dozens of festivals around the world. “God of Love” was Matheny’s thesis at NYU’s graduate film program.

Matheny has also co-written a feature-length coming-of-age comedy, “A Birder’s Guide to Everything,” with Sundance-award-winning director Rob Meyer. The project is currently in pre-production at Crossroads Films in New York.

His previous short film “Earano” — a loose, comic retelling of the Cyrano de Bergerac tale – won  the King Award for Screenwriting at the NYU First Run Festival, an honorable mention for the Fujifilm Audience Impact Award at the Angelus Student Film Festival, and Best Student Short at the Dam Short Film Festival in Boulder City, Nevada.

“Earano” was also called “charming and hilarious [and] quite romantic” by New York Magazine’s website.

Matheny grew up in Wilmington, Delaware. He has a bachelor’s degree from Northwestern University’s prestigious Medill School of Journalism and has worked as a reporter and copy editor in a variety of newspapers, magazines and web sites. He has also worked as a synopsis writer for Netflix, a story editor for the MTV series MADE, and as a filmmaking teacher at the School of Cinema and Performing Arts (SOCAPA) in Brooklyn.

He is currently writing a feature comedy script called “Ron Quixote.” He enjoys jazz, Scrabble and cleaning his desk.


NA WEWE Belgium/19 MIN

Director: Ivan Goldschmidt

Writers: Ivan Goldschmidt, Jean-Luc Pening

Producer: Ivan Goldschmidt


Cast: Renaud Rutten

1994: There is civil war in Burundi, a small country of Central Africa directly bordering Rwanda. A near genocidal confrontation opposes rebels mainly composed of ethnic Hutus and a national army with a majority of Tutsis.

This short film relates a sadly frequent episode of this fratricidal conflict: the attack by rebels of a minivan carrying ordinary citizens.

A Kalashnikov bursts out. The bus stops, the passengers get off. An order is barked: “Hutus to the left, Tutsis to the right!” The sorting out begins. But who is a Hutu, who is a Tutsi?

This story is entirely based on real people and situations. It was written by a person who has lived in the beauty of Burundi and suffered its horrors.

With emotion, suspense and humour it exposes the absurdity of ethnic and racial strife.

“NA WEWE” (pronounce “Na wayway”) means “You too” in Kirundi.

Director’s Biography:


A film director of fiction and advertising, a theatre stage director, more recently a sculptor and a painter, Ivan Goldschmidt cultivates diversity.

He graduated from INSAS (Brussels) in 1984 and has essentially placed his talents at the service of actors. After being one of the first coaches of the Belgian League of Improvisation, he jointly directs the short “Ketchup” with Manu Coeman. This film is acclaimed in international festivals and receives numerous prizes.

For Canal + France he writes and directs a widely noted series “François the Bachelor and his Terrific Friends”.

In 2001 he turns to the theatre with three plays and receives the Kiosque Prize for best stage direction.

His numerous advertising films based on comedy techniques are also crowned with multiple awards.

His universe is often once-removed, sometimes tender, sometimes corrosive, and always carries a human touch… Man is at the core of his films.

Today, with NA WEWE, he addresses the dark side of human nature. With his sense of irony, he approaches the dramatic themes of war and self-identity.

WISH 143 UK/24 MIN

Director: Ian Barnes

Writer: Tom Bidwell

Producer: Samantha Waite


Cast: Jim Carter, Jodie Whittaker, Dean Andrews

A fifteen-year-old boy with only months to live is granted one wish from the Dreamscape Charity. But David doesn’t want to go to Disneyland or meet Gary Neville; what he really wants is an hour alone with a naked woman.

Director’s Biography:

‘WISH143’ is the second short film from Ian Barnes following on from ‘Swing’, which graphically showed how adultery can seriously damage your health. In between making shorts Ian directs comedy and drama for the BBC, ITV and Channel4. Projects include ‘Hope Springs’ starring Alex Kingston, ‘Wild At Heart’ starring Stephen Tompkinson and ‘The Afternoon Plays’.

In 2009 and 2010 Ian was part of the team nominated for a BAFTA for episodes of the medical drama ‘Casualty’. One of the episodes revolved around the attempted suicide of a junior doctor.   Ian started life as a journalist and gradually moved into directing drama via radio and television.

He is currently working on a feature script ‘Plain Jane’ which he will be taking to the Sundance Lab in 2010.

Archive, Coming Attractions

About the author

chuck@circlecinema.com - Serving the Circle since 2006.

One Response to “2011 Oscar Nominated Short Films (Live Action & Animated)”

  1. 2011 Oscar Nominated Short Films (Live Action & Animated) says:

    2011 Oscar Nominated Short Films (Live Action & Animated)…

    […]But as they discover each other’s unique qualities – and come to realize that each of them offers a different window onto the same world – the friendship helps both to gain a new perspective. ….. Two fantastic films for Valentines day: – "T…

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