Kudos to UBC Film alumnus Joshua M. Ferguson whose short film, which he produced Whispers of Life, has won the Best Short Film Audience Award at the 15th Annual Reelout Queer Film + Video Festival in Kingston, Ontario. Whispers of Life (2013), was written and directed by Florian Halbedl. The film has been selected by 15 film festivals around the world so far including those in the US, Canada, Switzerland, Italy, Germany, Spain and Australia. It also been awarded both the Audience Choice and Jury Choice Awards at the 26th Reel Pride Winnipeg Film Festival. Whispers of Life tells the magical story about the interdependence of imagination and survival of Tom, a gay teenager, who is threatened by a bully’s homophobic words. As Tom sits on his park bench, ridden with angst, a stranger named Charles suddenly appears next to him and strikes up a conversation that forever alters the teenager’s future and life.
“The short film works as an artistic intervention to challenge the societal taboo of suicide, the pervasive and damaging effects of anti-gay bullying and the fact that these issues are not discussed openly. Whispers of Life brings communication to the forefront of the discussion of suicide and anti-gay bullying. We are excited that our film resonated with audiences at Reelout, especially considering that Joshua went to high-school and lived in the city.” – Florian Halbedl
Whispers of Life was shot and produced in Vancouver last year with the support of ninety-eight Vancouver industry professionals. Halbedl and Ferguson state that they used crowd-funding company IndieGoGo to raise the modest budget for the film; “138 funders from all over the world, including significant donations from the Philippines and France, supported the project.” More at www.whispersoflife.com