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OSCAR® Qualified Shorts Showcase 2021

December 5, 2021, 3:00 P.M. PST

Live Online Webinar

Outside the Box [Office] invites you to attend

A special live online screening of

OSCAR® Qualified Shorts Showcase 2021

Four Short Films Submitted for the
94th Academy Awards®


LAKUTSHON’ ILANGA (WHEN THE SUN SETS) - Student Academy Award Gold Winner

Followed by a Pre-Recorded Q&A with the Filmmakers
Moderated by SCA MFA Candidate Neha Dhabale

3:00 P.M. PST on Sunday, December 5th, 2021


All 4 short films will be screened directly through the Webinar.
Total running time: 88 minutes.

Open to all USC Students, Faculty, Staff, Alumni, and the General Public.


About the Shorts


South Africa, 14 minutes. Directed by Phumi Morare.
Student Academy Award Gold Winner!!!

A young, Black nurse living in 1985 apartheid South Africa must face her worst fears when she learns that her activist, younger brother may be in danger when he doesn't return after school.

Phumi Morare (Writer/Director)
Phumi Morare is a South African writer/director who is passionate about redeeming the African and feminine identity through cinema. She's interested in using the Black female gaze to tell personal, human stories of everyday Africans. She loves exploring African history, mythology and folktales in her storytelling. Phumi’s short films have played at international film festivals including Telluride Film Festival, Clermont-Ferrand Film Festival, and the American Black Film Festival. Phumi’s short film Lakutshon’ Ilanga (When The Sun Sets) is a finalist for the 2021 Student BAFTA awards and a finalist for the 2021 Student Academy Awards. Her upcoming project, Why The Cattle Wait, was selected for the 2021 Berlinale Talents Durban program and the 2021 Tribeca Chanel Through Her Lens Women’s Filmmaker Program. Phumi completed her MFA in Film Directing at Dodge College at Chapman University. She has a background in investment banking at Goldman Sachs in London and management consulting at McKinsey & Company in Johannesburg. She currently freelances as a strategist at Statement Films, a company that incubates African women content creators.


Spain / Congo, 30 minutes. Directed by Pablo de la Chica.
In a brutally dangerous landscape, sanctuary becomes the most valued commodity -- both to heal and be healed. MAMA Zawadi and her “babies", orphaned baby chimpanzees traumatized by the violence threatening their extinction, find their own sanctuary together at the Lwiro Primates Rehabilitation Center, Congo, where unconditional love is the first step in healing the wounds of war.

Pablo de la Chica (Director)
Pablo de la Chica studied Drama and Filmmaking on Madrid and Toronto. He has been working on different social projects around the world, especially in areas of war, conflict or violence. He has directed the documentary The Other Kids winning several awards in film festivals around the world and the series of refugees Dreams With out Borders for Aljazeera Documentary Channel. Mama is currently screening on The New Yorker Documentary platform (, and has won numerous awards as it is considered for both the Goya and Oscar Awards.


The Netherlands, 19 minutes. Directed by Vincent Tilanus.
A warm-hearted, queer, coming-of-age film that continues on from where the coming out ends. In the last weeks of being high school students, Cas and Naomi, both out of the closet, prefer to spend their days together. As “brother and sister" of other parents, they experience a security and love that they cannot find elsewhere. But when their future plans seem to drive them apart, their relationship will be put at risk and the affectionate Cas must dare to be alone.

Vincent Tilanus (Writer/Director)
Vincent Tilanus is a writer and director based in Amsterdam. Vincent graduated from the Netherlands Film Academy in 2018 with the fiction short film Gold Leaf (Bladgoud, 2018) which has screened at film festivals around the world and won the Prix Amnesty International France at the Poitiers Film Festival. His latest short film Marlon Brando (2020) is officially selected for the prestigious Semaine de la Critique of the Cannes Film Festival and the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). Marlon Brando was also nominated for a Dutch academy award (Golden Calf) for best short film. His newest medium-length feature Heartbeats (2021, 46mins) won the Dutch Academy Award (Golden Calf) for best actor in a leading role.


Belgium, 25 minutes. Directed by Michiel Blanchart.
Maxime lives with the ghost of his girlfriend Helen. Wishing to put an end to this frankly unbearable situation, Maxime finally decides to break up with her. Helen doesn't seem quite ready to accept this decision.
Michiel Blanchart (Writer/Director)
At 18, after dreaming of working in the movies all of his life and making shorts with his friends while growing up in France’s countryside, Writer/Director Michiel Blanchart decided to go back to his native country to study in one of the best-known cinema schools of Belgium: The «Institut des Arts de Diffusion» (IAD - Institute of Media Arts). During his years at school, Michiel directed several shorts both in and outside of the school curriculum. These films included L’Annonce, Lulu and Dynaman which went on to play at multiples festivals in Belgium, two of which ended up winning the BeTV award (at the Brussels Short Film Festival and at the FIFF in Namur). Benoit Mariage, a well-established director and teacher at IAD, introduced Michiel to Producer Michael Goldberg — and thus began a fruitful collaboration between the young filmmaker and his trusted producer. Michiel's short film You’re Dead, Helen (Belguim, 2021) traveled around the world and won multiple awards, including: Rhode Island (Best Short Fiction), Clermont Ferrand, Gerardmer (Best Short), Sitges (best short), Odense International Film Festival (Artist Award), Sapporo (Best Screenplay), FicMonterrey (Best Short Fiction), among many others. Michiel is currently working on several feature film projects, including the American adaptation of You’re Dead, Helen.

About the Moderator

Neha Dhabale is an MFA Candidate in the Film and Television Production program at USC. Prior to this, Neha has received a bachelor’s degree in Information Technology and MBA in Human Resources. She has a corporate experience, as a Software Developer and Human Resource Professional.

At USC, Neha received the prestigious Annenberg Fellowship, and has been awarded the Fox Fellowship Endowment fund for her advanced Thesis Project. She wants to write stories that echo the life of ordinary people, like her, yet with a scent of magic that we all sometimes crave in our life.

About Outside the Box [Office]

Outside the Box [Office] is a weekly showcase for upcoming releases highlighting world cinema, documentary and independent film titles. The series draws from around the globe to present movies that may challenge, inspire or simply entertain.

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