5 must-follow Instagram accounts for aspiring filmmakers

The TIFF x Instagram Shorts Festival could get your work in front of Ava DuVernay and Xavier Dolan — but first, get inspired by these five amazing Instagrammers.

Plus, the TIFF x Instagram Shorts Festival could get your work in front of Ava DuVernay and Xavier Dolan

Before you start work on your winning entry for the TIFF x Instagram Shorts Festival, get inspired by five amazing Instagrammers, including @chivexp (a.k.a. Oscar-winning cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki). Jody Sugrue, Director of TIFF Digital Studios, shares her picks for the best photographers and filmmakers on the app. (Instagram/@chivexp)

Update: Watch the winning film, LA PASIÓN ORIGINAL, below!

Maybe your Instagram videos are so cinematic they belong in a film festival — this one, specifically.

The TIFF x Instagram Shorts Festival is a new competition launched this week by, well, TIFF and Instagram, and it could get your social-media masterpiece seen by acclaimed filmmakers including Ava DuVernay and Xavier Dolan — never mind all the people who follow the Toronto International Film Festival on Insta.

Between now and July 20, TIFF will be accepting entries through Instagram, reviewing posts from filmmakers of all skill levels from around the world. To participate, all you have to do is post your short — which needs to be 60 seconds or less, because Instagram — tag it  #TIFFxInstagram and fill out the entry form at the TIFF website.

Come August, TIFF programmers will select 30 finalists – from a pool that's now at 197 videos and counting. From there, a special jury including DuVernay and Dolan, as well as music-video director Nabil Elderkin (Kanye West, "Mercy") and Instagrammer Rachel Ryle, will decide a Judge's Choice Winner. Update: So will James Franco, Priyanka Chopra and Ben Richardson! TIFF just announced the addition of three more celebrity judges. As for the remaining finalists, their 'grams will appear on the TIFF Instagram channel between August 8 -17, and the clip with the most "likes" at the end of the voting period will win a Fan Favourite Award.

What, exactly, everyone will win beyond a fleeting moment of Internet fame is still TBD. Update: The winners of both categories will get a trip to this September's Toronto International Film Festival, which means a chance to mingle at the Industry Conference — when not binging on all the movies in the program. A special meet-and-greet with Facebook/Instagram Canada is also part of the prize. But if you're brainstorming the perfect entry, CBC Arts asked one of the masterminds behind this competition, TIFF Digital Studio director Jody Sugrue, to share a few of her favourite Instagram accounts.

Take a look and get some inspiration…

Handle: @chivexp

Gravity, Birdman, The Revenant: those are the last three movies to win the Academy Award for best cinematography, and @chivexp — better known as Emmanuel Lubezki — is the filmmaker who took those Oscars home. Says Sugrue of the account, it's a "stunning behind-the-scenes look at the work of one of the world's most acclaimed cinematographers."

Handle: @radiohead

They need no introduction, but their current Instagram project definitely deserves a blurb. For the new album, A Moon-Shaped Pool, the innovative British band's been releasing "vignettes" on social, art films for every album track that have been created by some of the most interesting names in movies — the names you might see at TIFF, really: P.T. Anderson (The Master), Yorgos Lanthimos (The Lobster), Richard Ayoade (The Double).

Handle: @theadventurehandbook

The Instagram account for the travel website of the same name, Sugrue gives @theadventurehandbook a shout-out because, she says, "[I] love the way they use their Instagram as a storyboard format." Follow along and see for yourself.

Handle: @traceloops

It's all in the name. Matthias Brown (a.k.a @traceloops) traces video footage to create the hypnotic black-and-white animations you'll find on his Instagram (or tumblr, where he's arguably better known). Says Sugrue of the Brooklyn artist, he "manages to convey so much depth of emotion with his simple sketches."

Handle: @shieldfive

Per Sugrue, Shield 5 is "a crime drama told entirely on an Instagram feed," and when it debuted in February, the web series (or "social cinema," as it prefers to call itself), was touted as the first scripted series to appear on the application. Every day in February a new, 15-second installment to the serial was posted to Instagram — so you can blast through the entire series in minutes.

TIFF x Instagram Shorts Festival. Deadline for submissions July 20.


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