ACHOO wins 25by25by5 contest

Last night, the first Champaign-Urbana 25by25by5 Short Film Contest culminated in a screening at the University YMCA on Wright Street in Campustown, where ACHOO by Tim Peters won the Best Film award and THE RETURN by Warren Bensken won the Audience Choice award. Also in competition was CHICKEN MAN by Joe Taylor, while a pair of non-competition movies, DOGUMENT by Jill Miller and THE ADVENTURES OF THE SCREAMING APE by Jason Butler, rounded out the program.

Preceding the films, a short videotaped prologue by contest coordinators Mike and Lori Hansen and Donna Crossin introduced Team in Training (TNT), an outreach effort by the local Leukemia & Lymphoma Society chapter intended “to increase awareness and funding to support the mission of the Society while promoting fitness and healthy lifestyles in an effort to find a cure,” per their mission statement. All the money collected at the YMCA awards show will go towards research costs for finding cures to leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease, and myeloma.

Judges for the evening included: Geoff Merritt, owner of That’s Rentertainment in Champaign; Marty McKee, author of the column “Marty’s Cult Movie Classic” in the Champaign weekly The Hub; Jason Butler, C-U filmmaker behind the APE and WEREWOLF CEMETERY series (see item: 4/22/06); and yours truly, Jason Pankoke. Sponsors and prize donors included: That’s Rentertainment, MICRO-FILM, Crane Alley, Fiesta Cafe, Innocent Words Magazine & Records, BrainSmart Productions, and the University YMCA.

For more information about the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and Team in Training, click here, and feel free to e-mail Lori Hansen about future short film contests.

– Jason Pankoke

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