After 30 days and more than 700 submissions, we’re finally here. Our judges have spoken and they’ve selected entries from filmmakers who are going to be taking home more than $80,000 in grants and gear. It’s been quite the journey and we want to take a moment to congratulate everyone who participated in this year’s competition.
It’s a huge feat making any film, much less a good film, in less than 30 days. The creative constraints were real and we saw so many people succeed in spite of them. If anything, it’s proof there are plenty of talented filmmakers out there and we’re proud to be part of the community.
But, enough small talk. Let’s get to the real reason we’re all here—the 2019 Musicbed Challenge Winners. There were dozens of great films in each category, and ultimately our judge’s panel had the task of scoring submissions based on Craft, Song Use, Storytelling, and Creativity. We compiled their scores in each category to come up with the winners, as well as the four runners-up in each category.
Also, a big shoutout to our People’s Choice winners! We had thousands of people chime in on their favorite films and we’re announcing the winners in each category as well.
So, here are the 2019 Musicbed Challenge Winners, along with some of the judges’ comments to shed light on how they made their selections.
“This film has beautiful production value and VFX, which help realize a highly stylized stand-off. I appreciated the juxtaposition between natural shots at the start with the grime of the interior location and thought the filmmaker accomplished a nice sense of threat.” — Drea Clark
“From the get-go, it throws you into the action and keeps it moving. It’s tense from the start and that works well here. The length is short and sweet, without wasting time in trying to set up things. Your use of music was probably the best of the bunch of films I watched, too. I like how you layered it into the actual narrative, hearing it coming from the radio, and how it comes back for the end titles.” — Diego Contreras
“I love the opening shots and appreciate that you used just the sound of the ocean and muted colors, which really created a nice atmosphere and mood. There’s excellent editing and use of slo-mo. I love the transition from the first scene to the next, focusing on her hands on the clay wheel. Great song choice—it didn’t overstay it’s welcome. Great work!” — Meghan Oretsky
“This is a really funny idea. It’s rare to see fragrance ads being funny and I really didn’t expect it to go there—initially, I was thinking, ‘This is going to be so cheesy.’ I liked that you took the piss out of worthy emotional advertising.” – Raine Miller
“Great spot. Fun twist. It was definitely unexpected.” – Geoff Sawyer
“The film draws you in and you want to keep watching to see what’s going to happen.” – Marline Fletcher
“Hilarious! Very fluid storytelling—clear and captivating. It’s a great use of music to keep the story moving. I can tell you spent a lot of time planning and prepping ahead of time.” – Lizzie Peirce
“Very fun and energetic storyline! It’s really well put together, from the hip-hop montages to the sound effects and music selection. Great job!” – Sam Kolder
“Fantastic visuals. Great use of humor. Solid storytelling. Great camera work.” – Devin Graham
“The more I watched, the more I loved the casting, the character introductions, and the interactions. I thought the shift of focus between different characters—the handoffs between characters—was really fun to watch. I also really appreciate Lyla’s attention to detail and her sense of movement and composition and that it led to a larger setpiece—a legitimate payoff for the viewer. The concept was buried in a larger emotional journey expressed in a dramatic, powerful way.” — Jared Hogan
“The camera work was great, the choreography was on-point, and I knew I was in for something interesting from the first take. That single take was actually made even better when you chose to cut—I loved the emotion in that first close up of our lead female dancer. Your message was translated through the choreography, which isn’t always easy to do. I love the strong call-out at the end.” — Lauren Sick
Congratulations to this year’s winners! You’ve earned every bit of it. Also, a big thanks to this year’s judges for taking the time out of their (extremely) packed schedule to watch these films and share their input. And lastly, thanks to our great sponsors — Musicbed Challenge would not have been possible without their support.
In the end, we wish there could be more winners because there were so many great films. So, if you didn’t take home a prize today, don’t be discouraged. Just keep creating.