Experience Award-Winning Short Films by the Next Generation of Great Filmmakers in the New Season of KQED’s Film School Shorts

Simon Savelyev's Googly Eyes, screening as part of the fourth season of Film School Shorts.

Fourth season premieres September 9 at a brand-new new time — 8:30pm on Fridays — on KQED 9.

Simon Savelyev's Googly Eyes, screening as part of the fourth season of Film School Shorts.

August 4, 2016, San Francisco, CA — KQED announces the fourth season of Film School Shorts, a half-hour weekly series showcasing the best student-made shorts from around the country. Beginning on September 9, Film School Shorts will air at a new time — 8:30pm on Fridays. The 10-episode season features 27 films from directors hailing from some of the most prestigious film schools in the country, including USC, UCLA, NYU, Columbia, and the American Film Institute. Boasting an eclectic mix of styles and genres, the latest season of Film School Shorts features top-shelf performances by Patrick Fugit (Gone Girl), Kaori Momoi (Memoirs of a Geisha), Anna Camp (Pitch Perfect) and Taissa Farmiga (American Horror Story), to name a few.

The first episode of the new season, titled “Future,” features two original works from up-and-coming directors that explore very different aspects of the female domestic experience. In Thoranna Siqurdardottir’s Zelos, a competitive mother orders a clone from North Korea to both help her around the house and help her outshine a seemingly flawless friend. But she eventually finds her new purchase to be an even more formidable rival. In Lamia Alami’s Salaam Ghourba (Farewell Exile), a desperate young mother living in an impoverished Moroccan neighborhood nervously awaits immigration papers that would allow her and her son to join her husband in France.

The season continues with a selection of equally compelling films. In Jessica dela Merced’s Hypebeasts, racial tensions erupt between sneakerheads waiting in line for a chance to purchase the hottest new shoe on the market. Kaori Momoi delivers a bravura performance in Atsuko Hirayanagi’s Oh Lucy, about a lonely Tokyo office worker whose outlook on life is transformed after she is given a blonde wig. In Sequin Raze, the inspiration for the Lifetime series UnREAL, Sarah Gertrude Shapiro explores the nasty relationship between a producer and a spurned beauty queen on the set of a Bachelor-style reality show. It features a star-studded cast that includes Anna Camp, Frances Conroy (Six Feet Under) and Ashley Williams (How I Met Your Mother). And Reuben Guberek’s riotous Foodfellas is a high-calorie-but-good-for-you fast food spoof of a Martin Scorsese classic.


Film School Shorts’ fourth season also includes two films available for online-only viewing. In Amanda Milius’s post-apocalyptic western, The Lotus Gun (available August 9), a pair of female lovers living a peaceful life in their makeshift home are threatened when they encounter a runaway from a misogynistic drug cult. Meanwhile, the world of Luke Jaden’s King Ripple (available August 16) is no less dangerous. In this horror-fantasy, four teenagers wander into an abandoned junkyard and get lost looking for King Ripple. To view these films, visit and subscribe to the Film School Shorts YouTube page: youtube.com/FilmSchoolShorts.

For media inquiries, contact Peter Cavagnaro, Marketing and Communications Manager, at pcavagnaro@kqed.org or 415.553.8451.

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Episode 401 - "Future"

Zelos by Thoranna Sigurdardottir and Andrea Zevallos Zelos
American Film Institute
A mother who strives to "have it all" orders a clone to keep her home life in order and outshine her flawless colleague, but soon realizes she purchased an unbeatable rival. Directed by Thoranna Sigurdardottir.

Salaam Ghourba (Farewell Exile)
New York University
In an impoverished neighborhood of Casablanca, Morocco, Fatima impatiently awaits news from her husband in exile abroad. Will she be able to secure the immigration papers necessary to travel toward a better future for her and her son? Directed by Lamia Alami.

Episode 402 - "America"

Total Freak by Andrew Ellmaker Total Freak
Columbia University
Summer camp takes a dark turn in this '80s-esque comedy about how the pursuit of a first kiss awakens a monster from the deep. Directed by Andrew Ellmaker.

Rita Mahtoubian is not a Terrorist
American Film Institute
When Iranian-born Rita sets out to change her life from ordinary to extraordinary, she captures the attention of a homeland security agent (Patrick FugitGone Girl) in this satirical comedy about romance, terrorism and self help. Directed by Roja Gashtili and Julia Lerman.

Timmy II by Imran J. Kahn Timmy II
New York University, Tisch Asia
One robot learns that fitting in isn’t all it’s cracked up to be when his new human form attracts the wrong kind of attention in post-9/11 America. Directed by Imran J. Kahn.

Episode 403 - "Mean Streets"

American Film Institute
Taissa Farmiga (American Horror Story) stars as a 15-year-old girl facing her return to school after someone shared an explicit video of her online. Directed by Pippa Bianco.

New York University
Inspired by Spike Lee’s Do the Right Thing (the director also advised on the film), racial tensions explode between young people waiting in line to buy the hottest new sneakers on the market. Directed by Jessica dela Merced.

Episode 404 - "Daily Grind"

Socks & Bonds
Columbia University
A sock merchant (Stephen SingerObvious Child) and his girlfriend head out to the Hamptons to sell the next big thing in socks and undergarments only to discover there's a more pressing negotiation at hand. Directed by Daniel Zimbler.

Hopkins & Delaney LLP
California Institute of the Arts
Jack, a recovering alcoholic and divorced father-of-two, has to look after his kids on New Year’s weekend. Directed by Sean Buckelew.

Columbia University
Every marriage has its moments, and this wife can’t listen to another word from her husband about work. Directed by Milan Roganović.

Episode 405 - "Aspirations"

California Institute of the Arts
Animated on location at a beach, in the snow and underwater, this stop-motion short details a transoceanic conversation between two characters via objects in a bottle. Directed by Kirsten Lepore.

Glory Days
New York University
Jack, a recovering alcoholic and divorced father-of-two, has to look after his kids on New Year’s weekend. Directed by Benjamin Rutkowski.

Columbia University
A delusional actress with an affinity for burning bridges struggles to connect with the role that could make her career. Directed by Connor Simpson.

Episode 406 - "Crossed Stars"

The Life and Death Of Tommy Chaos and Stacey Danger
New York University
It's love at first sight in the midst of the dinosaur invasion for Tommy and Stacey. Together, they flee for a life of adventure and romance only to discover that even the brightest flames don’t burn forever. Directed by Michael Lukk Litwak.

Googly Eyes
University of California, Los Angeles
Gary’s (Cooper Barnes, The Perfect Host) chronic earache stirs up memories of his childhood and unresolved baggage with his ex-girlfriend. Directed by Simon Savelyev.

Fool of People
Rhode Island School of Design
Dance across an old Victorian mansion filled with whimsical animated characters. Directed by Jose Rodriguez.

Episode 407 - "Somebody to Love"

Oh Lucy!
New York University
Kaori Momoi (Memoirs of a Geisha) stars as a 55-year-old single office worker in Tokyo with nothing to look forward to but forced retirement and a lonely death. However, when her American English teacher gives her a blonde wig and a new identity, her perspective on life begins to change. Directed by Atsuko Hirayanagi.

University of Southern California
A man mourns life and lost love in this jazz-age inspired stop-motion animation. Directed by Brandon Lake.

Episode 408 - "Reality Bites"

SEQUIN RAZE still Sequin Raze
American Film Institute
Anna Camp (Mad Men), Frances Conroy (Six Feet Under), and Ashley Williams (How I Met Your Mother) star in this behind-the-scenes look at life on a Bachelor-style reality television program. Adapted into Lifetime’s award-winning television series UnREAL. Directed by Sarah Gertrude Shapiro.

VimeoScreenshot2-061516 Kendall Got A Rose
University of Southern California
A couple discusses the latest episode of The Bachelor as one gets ready for work. Directed by Luke Haskard.

Episode 409 - "Behind Closed Doors"

Busted on Brigham Lane
Columbia University
A young girl gets creative as she attempts to get her estranged father to attend her 18th birthday celebration. Directed by Talibah Newman.

Expiration Date
University of Southern California
Fridge foods come to life to fight a zombie apocalypse. Directed by Sarah Tejeda.

Episode 410 - "Our Culture"

FF PRIMARY Still 1 Foodfellas
University of Southern California
If the gangsters of Martin Scorsese’s Goodfellas got into the fast food business, Foodfellas would be the result. Follow one young burger flipper down a spiral of corruption, greed and French fries. Directed by Reuben Guberek.

New York University
The best 60 seconds of film you’ll see at Sundance.” – Reel.com Directed by Ari Gold.

Film School Shorts - Season 4 - Open 24 Hours Promotional Image Open 24 Hours
Brown University
Featuring Brad Leland (Friday Night Lights) and Dale Raoul (True Blood), a quick stop for gas turns into a high-stress waiting game for one unlucky criminal. Directed by Henry Chaisson.

Trash Cat
Savannah College of Art and Design
A mischievous cat loves knocking over trashcans, much to his owner’s dismay. Directed by Kelsey Goldych.



Film School Shorts is a nationally distributed series of KQED that airs in 88% of the country, including major markets like New York City, Los Angeles and Chicago. It’s a showcase for emerging filmmakers using social media to build an online community to capture the experience of going to film school. Personally selected by series producer Lisa Landi and associate producer Julia Shackelford, Film School Shorts represents a wide range of styles and content, introducing vibrant young filmmakers soon to make an impact in the industry.

Meet our student filmmakers, learn more about the films, and view some of our award-winning shorts online at kqed.org/fss, and be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter!



KQED serves the people of Northern California with a public-supported alternative to commercial media. An NPR and PBS affiliate based in San Francisco, KQED is home to one of the most listened-to public radio stations in the nation, one of the highest-rated public television services and an award-winning education program helping students and educators thrive in 21st-century classrooms. A trusted news source and leader and innovator in interactive technology, KQED takes people of all ages on journeys of exploration — exposing them to new people, places and ideas.