*Metro Shorts was a quarterly film competition hosted and curated by Mostly Water Theatre and produced by The Metro Cinema Society located in the historic Garneau Theatre. It gave Edmonton filmmakers the chance to get their work screened live, adjudicated by professionals, get paid, win prizes, and be forced to make more shorts. It ran for 10 seasons, screened over 400 shorts, and ended in 2019. These stories are a celebration of some of the filmmakers that crossed our paths.
Metro Shorts Memories:
Have you ever had a dream where your pants were too tight and you look down and it wasn’t pants but paint and they aren’t even your legs and then you are totally cool with it? Welcome to the creative world of Angela Seehagen.
I’ve always seen Angela as the embodiment of the Metro Shorts community. She has traversed many incarnations within the Metro Shorts world and as she set off into the wilderness on her own, found her very unique voice. Here is an example.
One of the most wonderful parts of Metro Shorts was seeing artists evolve. It was cool to see the judges/adjudicators (which I will also touch on in a future post) offer insight to the filmmakers. With that said, what I came to realize as to what Metro Shorts offered most, for Angela and many others, was a deadline. It gave her a date to make something. It forced her hand and she rose to the occasion. Over and over.
Most of the time she would be like, “I really don’t know what the fuck I did,”. It didn’t matter. The audience could see the authenticity to it. The straight up fun. She made people like weird things.
In her own words:
“When I was a kid I found an old JVC VHS-C camcorder in the basement. My friends and I started creating short films; editing in-camera and spicing up the stories with generic sound loops from a keyboard placed just off-screen. Throughout grade school, university, and my early career in Environmental Science, I continued my film journey with a focus on experimental and comedic ideas. I eventually started working for local film production companies, received my first grant through TELUS Storyhive for my sci fi short film MAGIC CRAFT, and continued on to my current role of creating digital content in the gaming industry.
Over the years, Metro Shorts was an absolute dream. I loved that it gave myself and fellow filmmakers a community, an audience, and a chance to learn from our mistakes during live adjudication. With my persistent resistance to posting my videos online, Metro Shorts was the primary place that I would share new work. Not to mention that the Garneau Theatre itself is one of my favourite places in Edmonton, so having a film on that big screen was extra exciting.”
With that said, here is Seehagen’s Magic Craft:
Currently, Angela is finishing the script for a surreal prairie-based short film, editing an experimental cautionary tale, and capturing the greening of the trees and northern swing of the setting sun through a stop motion project.
That is totes on brand for Seehagen.
From Executive Director Dan Smith:
“I actually remember watching Sweet Lies when it screened at Metro Shorts and I absolutely loved it. I can attest that the first time I watched it, I paired it with a small popcorn (extra butter), a soda water, and a pack of nibs. Sadly, this second time around I viewed it while I was indulging in a can of Puritan brand Corned Beef Hash. I think that is more a sign of the times than anything.
In the spirit of lifting the veil and peering at the not so sweet truth underneath, I recommend pairing “Sweet Lies” with “Capital in the 21st Century” which we are now offering as a virtual screening. When you are done, I say head down to the farmers market and spend some of that hard earned capital on some delicious strawberries (cause they are awesome, fruit or not) and pair them with Secret Desires and Magic Craft.”
And, as an addendum, this suggestion from Metro Society resident herald Jennifer Fehr:
“I don’t work with strawberries too much since I have a raspberry patch, but here’s an easy jam recipe I found. Small batch strawberry jam (no pectin required).”
Special thanks go to The Metro Cinema Society and all the awesome people we (Mostly Water Theatre) worked with along the way. Without them all, none of these memories would be so vivid and brilliant. If you wish to support the Metro Cinema Society, visit their site and peruse their offerings. Here is the link HERE.