Announcing the Winners of Musicbed Challenge 2022 - Musicbed Blog
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Announcing the Winners of Musicbed Challenge 2022

Our panel of industry-leading judges have scored finalists and crowned winners in each category.

After 60 days and over 900 submissions, we’re thrilled to announce the filmmakers selected by our judges as the winners of Musicbed Challenge 2022.

First, we’d like to say a huge thank you—and even congratulations—to everyone who participated in this year’s competition. Making a film is a massive accomplishment, even without the kind of constraints associated with Musicbed Challenge. You overcame. You broke through. Indeed, you rose to the challenge.

Now let’s see who will be splitting $100K+ in grants and gear, watch their films, and hear a bit from the judges and winning filmmakers alike.


BEST NARRATIVE

Victor Velasco, Spoon

Featured Musicbed Music
“How to Be Invisible” by Thrupence
“Tilt” by Hannah Parrott

CREW

Director/Writer/VFX: Victor Velasco

Producers: Victor Velasco, Ginaris Sarra

DP: Lerry Kin

Color: Reason Studios, Roy Sun

Sound Mixer: Jonathan Millett

Sound Design: Jifu Li

Gaffer: Ben Ivers

Special Thanks: Hayley Keown

Cast: Alex Marino, Brendan Takashi

JUDGE COMMENTS

This is the type of film that sparks important conversations. When we think of dementia or any mental illness, we rarely see it through the eyes of the person suffering; we usually understand it through the point of view of their loved ones. I really appreciate your choice to make a film with a deeper message behind the cool visual effects.” — Kyndra Kennedy

A well-earned final reveal with some transfixing images leading up to it. The music heightened the tone and dramatic conflict but never overwhelmed or got lost.” — Drea Clark

A CHAT WITH THE FILMMAKER 

Victor Velasco is a director, writer, and VFX/motion graphics artist based in Los Angeles. When we contacted him to share news of his big win, we took the opportunity to ask him more about his film. 

MUSICBED: Where did the concept for Spoon come from? 

VICTOR: I did a project in a public retirement home back in my country, Venezuela, where I witnessed many residents who suffered from these mental illnesses. I always saw how they were going back and forward between different realities. What really moved me was that sense of vulnerability they had when they realized they were in a different place in a moment. That’s what I wanted to capture in the film.

MUSICBED: What was it that drew you to the songs you used? How did those songs impact your final film?

VICTOR: I remember clearly the two songs I chose. I was surprised by how perfectly they fit with the scenes we were developing. Contrast is one of the key elements of the short. Going from an epic, suspenseful, rising song (“Tilt” by Hannah Parrott) where we show the Spoon in contrast to the melancholic, slow, emotional bit at the end (which, coincidentally, is called “How to be invisible”) was key to capture the emotions we were trying to convey.

NARRATIVE FINALISTS

A Sunflower Named Hopeful Future, The Hidden Fortune, Josephine, ADA


BEST DOCUMENTARY

Jiakai Lou, Shared Plant

Featured Musicbed Music
Everything is a Memory” by Slow Meadow

CREW

Director/DP/Editor: Jiakai Lou

JUDGE COMMENTS

“Beautifully done. Feels like an intimate window into the craft and the subject’s life. Visually striking, and the sound is well-done. Very nice job of connecting commercial style with observational documentary story techniques. Appreciate the diegetic scoring at the end.” — Phil Wall 

The rare combination where the evocative storytelling is matched by superb craft. Very well done.” — Takashi Doscher 

A CHAT WITH THE FILMMAKER 

Jiakai Lou discovered his passion for documentary filmmaking while attending college in Montana. That passion is evident in every frame of his gorgeous documentary, Shared Plant

MUSICBED: How did you discover and connect with the subject of this film? 

JIAKAI: I first met the subject of my films, Shamoshuang Lou, twelve years ago. That was also the last time I saw her before this production. Twelve years later, when I moved back to China from Montana, I heard she had opened a beautiful natural dye workshop. I went to check the place out, and soon fell in love with her space and the atmosphere. When I chatted with Shamoshuang, I  was surprised by how she sees her lifestyle as a way to connect with the land and her family. From that moment, I decided to make a short film.

MUSICBED: What’s your main takeaway from this filmmaking experience?

JIAKAI: There are good people with inspiring stories anywhere on this planet, and they are just waiting to be discovered. 

DOCUMENTARY FINALISTS

The Fade, The Best for You, Buonasera, siamo dall’Ucraina, Dreams of Cloth & Colour


BEST SPEC AD

Melle Branson, CONTENT KINGZ

Featured Musicbed Music
Red Cloud” by Uncle Skeleton

CREW

Director: Melle Branson

Producers: Alexandra Nell, Maria Elena Amatulli 

DP: Lewis Potts

Editor/Colourist: Denzil Heeger

Cam Assist: Sunny & Billy Chaulagai 

Wardrobe: Texx Montana 

Sourcing: Annie Brooks

Sound Recordist: Lucy Messenger

MUA: Nadia Duca

Composer/Producer: JCAL

Vocals: Melle Branson

Creative: Dustin de Souza 

Prod Assist: Ricky Gestro & Hannah Jones

Stills: Melle Branson

Special Thanks: QT Perth, Raz Rentals, Sandbox Post Production

JUDGE COMMENTS

Love these characters and the ride they took me on. I love the representation of older Asian people outside of the typical narratives of victims or tokens. Captured the internet zeitgeist authentically.” — Mohammad Gorjestani

A CHAT WITH THE FILMMAKER 

Melle Branson focuses her creative energy on telling emotive, people-driven stories. Her ability to capture a subject’s raw essence defines the best moments of her winning spec ad, CONTENT KINGZ.

MUSICBED: What compelled you to compete in this year’s Musicbed Challenge?

MELLE: I’ve been entering the Musicbed Challenge since 2019, and apart from loving the challenge of seeing what we can do within the constructs of the timeframe, my favorite part of this experience is the process of working with other creatives in a completely collaborative and playful way. 

MUSICBED: Where did the CONTENT KINGZ concept come from? 

MELLE: I came up with this idea whilst doom scrolling social media. I’m ever fascinated by the concept of hyperreality, and wanted to depict this in a fun and fantastical way by creating a light, satirical take on influencer culture, the commodification of media content, and the ways in which smartphone photography has transformed our lives. 

MUSICBED: What was it that drew you to the songs you used? How did those songs impact your final film?

MELLE: I wanted to create two separate worlds that depicted the way the characters perceived themselves while doing a content photoshoot versus the reality of what goes on behind the scenes, and the strongest and most potent way to create these distinctions was through music. The melodic riff and the dreamy, whimsical, textural sounds of the Uncle Skeleton track from Musicbed provided an unexpected intermission, adding to the surrealness and absurdity of the scene.

SPEC AD FINALISTS

Move, ASTRO ARMIS, Anywhere, Passion Knows No Limits


PEOPLE’S CHOICE

Akwarandu Klyn, JUST THE TWO OF US

FEATURED MUSICBED MUSIC
All I Had Was You (with Paul Moody)” by The Field Tapes

CREW

Makeup Amesi Isabella

Cinematographer: Godwin Ekoh

Screenwriter: Akwarandu Klyn

Camera Assistant: John Boanerge

Video Editor: Godwin Ekoh

Lead Actor: Ekuma Chris

Actor: Pearl Jam

Actor: Mirabel David

Camera Assist: Gift Nwaog


And that’s a wrap on another Musicbed Challenge. On behalf of everyone involved, we extend our thanks to our panel of VIP judges for lending their time and expertise to ensure this year’s standout submissions got the credit they deserved, and we offer our gratitude to the sponsors and partners who made it all possible. 

See you in 2023. 

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