The ones to watch: Vimeo hosts 2019 best video awards in Prospect Heights

Fowl play: The short film “Albatross Soup,” from Brooklyn animator Winnie Cheung, has been nominated for Best Animation by the Vimeo Festival and Awards, happening on Jan. 11.
Winnie Cheung

It’s a big day for the small screen!

Filmmakers and aspiring video storytellers will stream to Prospect Heights next weekend for a day of screenings, panel discussions, and parties. The Vimeo Festival and Awards, at Murmrr on Jan. 11, will also honor 10 videos as the best of 2019 with an award ceremony that one online video platform honcho said is different from other festivals.  

“The VFAs is an awards show unlike any other,” said Courtney Horwitz. “We’re celebrating the best and most original videos on the internet, and bringing people from all corners of the world together to have fun, learn, and be inspired.”

Out of the millions of videos uploaded to Vimeo, staff members selected 100 nominees, spread evenly across 10 different genres. The categories include Comedy, Drama, Animation, Action Sports Video, Documentary, Experimental, and Travel, along with three new categories: Branded Contest, Brand Story: Large Business, and Brand Story: Small Business, which Horwitz said results from a recent increase in businesses using the platform to share their stories. 

“More and more we’re seeing businesses and brands using our platform to share their stories with the world, and it was important for us to include these segments in the VFAs and our curatorial process,” Horwitz said. 

In each category, a panel of three judges — including actors Danny Devito, in the Comedy Category, and Alec Baldwin, for Drama — chose a single winner, which will be announced at 7:30 pm, followed by a screening of all 10 winners, and an after-party for the honored filmmakers (and those who spring for a deluxe ticket).

During the day, the festival will feature a series of panel discussions aimed at upcoming filmmakers, discussing the creative process, working with brands, and the difference between working on short films and feature-length products. In another room, many of the nominated films will screen, while the creators offer live commentary about their projects, which Horwitz said she is most excited for. 

“I’m most excited to see the live directors commentary; those behind-the-scenes takes on how shots came together adds both personal and educational elements that I find truly wonderful,” she said.

Vimeo Festival and Awards at Murmrr [17 Eastern Parkway between Plaza Street E. and Underhill Avenue in Prospect Heights, (516) 510–1477, www.murmrr.com]. Jan. 11; 1–9 pm (after party 9–11 pm). $20 ($40 for deluxe pass).