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HorrorFest to award Chili Thom Memorial Trophy

Arts News: Doc Lab applications open

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Organizers of the revived Heavy Hitting Horrorfest have announced a new trophy that they'll hand out at the event on Oct. 30 to honour the life of one of the festival co-founders.

The Chili Thom Memorial Trophy—which will come with a cash prize of $666.69—will aim to honour the legacy of the filmmaker/artist/all-around-creative Chili Thom, who succumbed to cancer in the fall of 2016.

The long-running horror film festival has been on hiatus since then.

Feet Banks, the other festival organizer, said in a release that he plans to make the trophy out of Thom's "old bloody chainsaw, a prop from an early HorrorFest film."

"HorrorFest is a community," Banks says. "Some of the filmmakers and actors we'll see this year have been down since day 1—15 years of supporting each other for the simple reason of having fun and creating art. That was exactly how Chili and I envisioned it and it would feel strange to resurrect the community without finding a way to ensure he was still part of it."

Meanwhile, Best in Show for the 2018 festival instalment will take home the established Silver Skull Trophy, along with "at least" $1,500. There will also be cash prizes for Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Cinematography, Best Effect, the People's Choice, and the Erin Sollowey "Manimal" Award for Most Fearless Performance.

As for the Chili Thom Memorial Trophy? "It's going to the winner of Best Nude Scene," Banks says. "Chili would've wanted it that way."

Film submissions to the festival are open until Sept. 15 at 11:59 p.m. Tickets for the event go on sale on Oct. 1. For more visit heavyhitting.com.

Doc Lab applications open

The Whistler Film Festival has opened up applications for its 2018 Doc Lab, aimed at Canadian documentary filmmakers with projects that focus on social issues in development.

The multi-phased program will select up to 10 artists who will have a chance to work with experts in documentary filmmaking. Those experts will guide filmmakers through the initial funding models, outreach strategies, and the creative vision to drive their project ahead.

This year, the facilitator will be Vancouver-based TV producer, writer and development executive Robert Hardy from Perfect Day Productions.

"WFF's Doc Lab provides a unique setting for some of Canada's most promising documentary content creators to focus on the development of their projects, and to connect to filmmakers and industry executives at Whistler," said Shauna Hardy Mishaw, executive director of the festival. "The program supports non-fiction filmmakers with powerful and important stories to tell."

The deadline for applications is Oct. 5 at 11:59 p.m. For more information visit whistlerfilmfestival.com/talent/doc-lab/.

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