Short cuts: Australian director Robertino Zambrano’s Love In The Time Of March Madness misses out on Oscars nomination

Love In The Time Of March Madness was made by Australian director, designer and animator Robertino Zambrano. Photo: Supplied Zambrano comes from a design, rather than a film, background.


Jeanne Moreau in Ascenseur Pour L’echafaud (Elevator To the Gallows). Photo: Supplied

Natalie Portman’s Jane Got A Gun is on at the Moonlight Cinema in Melbourne and Sydney in February. Photo: Supplied

Radha Mitchell (left) and Odessa Young in Looking for Grace. Photo: Supplied

Australian director, designer and animator Robertino Zambrano came very close to a trip to this year’s Academy Awards. In December, he learned that his film, Love In The Time Of March Madness, had made a shortlist of 10 in the animated short category. The black-and-white animation, written by the film’s narrator, Melissa Johnson, is a tall tale and a true story, a work about height, love and misadventures. When the final list of nominees was announced last week, with the shortlist narrowed down to five, March Madness, which he directed and produced with Johnson, had not made the final cut.

He has a positive angle on the experience. “Coming from a design background, and not having had a fully-fledged formal film education, I felt like an outsider to the film world for a very long time,” so being shortlisted, he says, was validation and encouragement. “It also made me feel that all the hard work I’ve put in through the years was worth it. Beyond that, it just made me feel proud – not only for Melissa, myself and the crew, but for our family and friends who shared equally in the pride and joy of the film’s success.”

Doors have opened as a result of being on the shortlist, he says. He is now working on the treatment for his next film, “which deals with the survival journey of a man caught in the wake of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines. This one will probably a bit darker – but we’ll see.” He will be posting updates on the project on Twitter (@robertinoz), as the search for funding gets under way. French connectionAscenseur Pour L’echafaud (Elevator To the Gallows).” src=”http://www.smh苏州半永久纹眉.au/content/dam/images/g/m/9/q/0/7/image.imgtype.articleLeadwide.620×349.png/1453282487313.png” title=”” width=”100%” />

Jeanne Moreau in Ascenseur Pour L’echafaud (Elevator To the Gallows).

Australian audiences will have the opportunity to binge on French films in the next couple of months on the small and the big screen. Online, the website MyFrenchFilmFestival is screening a selection of French-language movies in an event that runs until February 18. This includes new release comedies, dramas and thrillers, and a restored version of the classic Louis Malle crime drama Ascenseur Pour L’echafaud (Elevator To the Gallows), as well as shorts and two documentaries on cinema. Individual films cost $3.20 each, or there’s a total access package for $9.50. The shorts and documentaries are free. In one of the documentaries, Cineast(e)s, 20 female directors discuss their experience of filmmaking.

Australian viewers will notice that three of the films in the online festival, La Belle Saison (Summertime), Coup de Chaud (Heatwave) and Un peu, beaucoup, aveuglement (Blind Date), are listed as being unavailable in this region. These films can be seen later in the year, screening in other festivals and theatrically. The French connection continues with the Alliance Francaise French Film Festival, which begins in March and April in seven cities, with scores of features in the mix. The full program will be released on February 2.myfrenchfilmfestival苏州半永久纹眉Serious MoonlightJane Got A Gun is on at the Moonlight Cinema in Melbourne and Sydney in February.” src=”http://www.smh苏州半永久纹眉.au/content/dam/images/g/m/9/t/l/8/image.imgtype.articleLeadwide.620×349.png/1453282550917.png” title=”” width=”100%” />

Natalie Portman’s Jane Got A Gun is on at the Moonlight Cinema in Melbourne and Sydney in February.

The February line-up at the Moonlight Cinema in Melbourne and Sydney includes advance screenings of several features, among them the biopic Steve Jobs, starring Michael Fassbender; the new Joel and Ethan Coen movie, Hail, Caesar!; The Lady In The Van, starring Maggie Smith; Concussion, in which Will Smith plays a doctor investigating the dangers of NFL injuries; and Trumbo, with Bryan Cranston as the blacklisted screenwriter Dalton Trumbo. There’s also the chance to see an advance screening of Jane Got A Gun, a Western starring Natalie Portman and Joel Edgerton that had a troubled production history.moonlight苏州半永久纹眉.auGrace notesLooking for Grace.” src=”http://www.smh苏州半永久纹眉.au/content/dam/images/g/m/8/1/0/e/image.imgtype.articleLeadwide.620×349.png/1453282625006.png” title=”” width=”100%” />

Radha Mitchell (left) and Odessa Young in Looking for Grace.

The Australian feature Looking For Grace – which opens early on Australia Day, on Tuesday, rather than on the customary Thursday – has a couple of Sydney previews the night before, with filmmakers in attendance. On Monday, January 25 at the Palace Chauvel, Margaret Pomeranz will host a Q & A after the 6.30pm screening with writer-director Sye Brooks and actor Richard Roxburgh. Brooks and Roxburgh will also introduce a 7.15pm screening at the Palace, Norton Street.