Academy Nicholl Fellowship Announces 2020 Winners
Len Amato, President of HBO Programming on MANIC
"Kate really brought Yolanda’s words to life. She infused her unique sensibility into the process and created a visually distinctive piece that brings us into a world we don’t often get to see."
Film Threat: Mark Bell on PEARL WAS HERE
"Pearl Was Here is a tonal adventure. For much of the film, Pearl’s actions and eventual plight are cute and humorous; at a certain point, however, a darker cloud starts to set in and there’s an ominous tension that develops, finally climaxing in a fashion that is as shocking to the characters in the film as it was to me watching. And it works, sticking with you long after the film has ended. Those final moments make you re-think much of what came before, and the film becomes more layered and open to interpretation. What was Pearl’s true motivation, both for climbing into the booth, and not wanting to come out? Or is it just a case of a kid being a kid, not thinking of the consequences? The answers are debatable, and that’s what makes the short so powerful."
Twitch: Ben Umstead on PEARL WAS HERE
"A very sweet, and then frightfully brutal take on child/parent relations."
Smells Like Screen Spirit: Don Simpson on PEARL WAS HERE
Pearl Was Here
"Miana Abramson’s performance as Pearl is more than enough reason to watch this nine-minute short film. It is nothing short of amazing. Abramson is so perfectly cast in this part — there is absolutely no denying that she must have at least a little bit of Pearl inside her. No child actor can be that good, can they?"
Slug Magazine: Jory Carroll on PEARL WAS HERE
"The acting from Abramson is truly stellar and makes this film what it is. The straightforward approach, with great attention to every little detail, from director Kate Marks will also strike a chord for any parent who has experienced the struggles of raising a child, and how every parent handles certain situations differently."
Black Public Media: Nonso Christian Ugbode on 7 DAY GIG
"So in the end, is death funny? Well, we all process the aftermath of death differently, and we’re all children of cultures that have struggled with the question of how to honor the dead for eons, but the message of this wonderfully moving short is this – while we might all be strangers from the Internet to each other, we all understand the loss of death, even when we can’t explain it. And there’s something strangely wonderful about that."
See Short Films: Laura Anderson on MIRACLE MAKER
"Another brilliant young actor called Jovan Armand taking the lead in this one (bit of a theme this year), with a charming supporting cast of characters. The visual style and tone of the piece are great, and it’s very touching. Will be interesting to see what writer/director Kate Marks does next."