A couple of two-time Camp Kuleshov “Lev” winners have welcomed a newcomer to the fold, as the 2017 top winners in the International Camp Kuleshov competition have been announced. Taking The Lev Award in Editorial is Assistant Alex Heisterkamp of Lucky Post in Dallas, who won for his reworking of the 1962 musical hit “The Music Man” as a foreboding dystopian drama.

Joining Heisterkamp in the winner’s circle are two assistants for whom winning has become familiar. Particle Audio’s Jordan Stalling won The Lev Award in Audio for the second year running with his jarring sound design treatment for the experimental 1929 silent film, “Man with a Movie Camera.”

And in Graphic Design, The Lev Award went again to jumP’s Thom Reimerink, who took the same film, “Man with a Movie Camera,” and converted it into a science fiction film, using a mix of design and effects techniques.

To view his top winner, go to https://vimeo.com/album/4830006/video/239497152.

To view his winner, go to https://vimeo.com/album/4830006/video/240063911.

To view his winner, go to https://vimeo.com/album/4830006/video/240206389.

Both Stalling and Reimerink won The Lev Awards in their respective categories in the 2016 Camp Kuleshov competition.

CK is AICE’s annual contest in which assistants accept the challenge of creating compelling and persuasive film trailers and turn them into showcases for their problem-solving capabilities and their skill in the post production crafts. This year, CK contests in Editorial, Audio and Graphic Design were held in six AICE Chapters: Chicago, Detroit, Los Angeles, New York, Toronto and Texas. A new contest was also held, dubbed ‘@ Large,’ for those assistants working either at AICE member companies not based within a specific chapter or whose chapters have a low enrollment.  

In addition to being presented with The Lev Award (named for Lev Kuleshov, the Russian film theorist and the patron saint of Camp Kuleshov), Heisterkamp, Reimerink and Stalling will also receive $1,000 gift cards courtesy of Camp Kuleshov sponsor Key Code Media, and their winning entries will be saluted at the 2018 AICE Awards, coming up in May of next year in Los Angeles.

The 2017 CK Lev Award jury reviewed all the winners in the Editorial, Audio and Graphic Design categories from the various chapter and ‘@Large’ competitions that took place in October. Serving on the jury this year were Editors Tom Brassil of Cutters in Chicago, Keith James of Republic Editorial in Dallas, Chris Franklin of Big Sky in New York, Patrick Griffin of jumP in Los Angeles and Lauren Horn of School Editing in Toronto. Also taking part were VFX Artist Frank Marra of Hudson Edit in Detroit and Audio Mixer Joaby Deal of One Union Recording in San Francisco.

Commenting on the judging process for the Lev winners, Horn says she enjoyed being involved in this next level of the competition, having already judged CK events in the Toronto chapter. “And being able to meet and judge alongside some amazing peers in the industry was a definite bonus,” she adds.

“In general my reaction to the different entries was just bring remarkably impressed,” Horn notes. “Each was incredibly strong, to the point that it made judging very difficult. In the end it was only a few small details that would elevate one over another. Alex’s entry in Editorial was a clear front runner for me, due to the incredible level of craftsmanship and polish it presented. Not only was his pacing engaging and on-point, the entire flow worked together seamlessly to deliver a strong storyline with interesting visuals. Had I not known any better, it would be hard to imagine this wasn’t an incredibly strong short film of its own.”

Horn’s take on the Audio and Graphic Design winners was equally as impressive. “Jordan’s entry blew me away, as well as the rest of the jury, too,” she offers. “While every entry in this category was really strong, Jordan created something remarkable. His entire piece was like a song of its own, with a rhythm and flow that swept you away as a viewer.”

Regarding the Graphic Design winner, Horn notes that “one of the most impressive things was that it was hard to tell what Thom had added and what was original. He did a really great job of integrating his work with the style and feel of the film itself. Overall, he shows great promise in compositing, and his piece was well put-together. He created what seemed like a really interesting excerpt of a creepy, post-apocalyptic sci-fi film, all from a movie that was quite the opposite.”

For a full rundown on CK winners across all chapters and the ‘@Large’ winners, check out the Camp Kuleshov Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/CampKuleshov/. To view all the 2017 CK winners, go to https://vimeo.com/album/4830006.

Camp Kuleshov organizers again thanked the local and international supporters and volunteers who helped make the events possible. In addition to Key Code Media, this list includes Avid, which donated a Media Composer for the First Place winners in Editing and a ProTools system for the First Place winners in Audio.