Announcing: YEAR-FIVE Award Winners

Austin, TX -- Other Worlds Austin SciFi Film Festival is proud to announce its 2018 Audience, Mary Shelley, Dan O’Bannon, Screenplay, and Cthulhies award winners. Large and enthusiastic crowds enjoyed a lot of SciFi (and a fair amount of horror) during the four-day fest (Dec. 6-9 at Flix Brewhouse). Audiences sampled more than 50 films from around the world, along with captivating Q&As, workshops, parties, and more.


Audience Awards

The Best Feature Audience Award winner for 2018 is THE WRONG TODD, written and directed by Rob Schulbaum. In this SciFi comedy, Todd is having some issues with his girlfriend and after a thorny disagreement, he finds himself in a parallel universe, replaced in his own home by his other self. Now Todd has to stop Todd from stealing his own girlfriend. The question is, can he outsmart himself?

The Best Short Audience Award winner for 2018 is OXFORD COMA, written and directed by Jake Jarvi. OXFORD COMA (pun intended) clocks in at little over a minute, but makes its point while delighting and horrifying audiences.  


Mary Shelley Award for SciFi Filmmaking

The Mary Shelley Award winner for 2018 is Stephanie Donnelly, writer/director of the superhero short THE ADVENTURES OF PENNY PATTERSON.

According to juror Melanie Addington (Executive Director, Oxford Film Festival), Ms. Donnelly was selected “because while each of the films were unique and wonderful, [Stephanie’s] film captured the spirit that bears the name of the author in making a dynamic genre film that found a way to breathe new life into the superhero story with a fantastic lead female.”  

In its fourth year, the Mary Shelley Award is given to the best film that furthers the involvement and representation of women in the SciFi genre. This award is sponsored by Canine Productions, producers of award-wining shorts, music videos, and documentaries.

The Mary Shelley Award Jury for 2018 was:

Melanie Addington, Executive Director, Oxford Film Festival

Lizzie Borden, Filmmaker (BORN IN FLAMES writer/director)

Jacqueline Coley, Editor, Rotten Tomatoes

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Dan O’Bannon Filmmaking Grant

The winner of the Dan O’Bannon Filmmaking Grant for 2018 is Ronald Short. This grant is sponsored by The O’Bannon Company and Dan’s widow, Diane.

“Our fantastic jury considered many entries,” says Bears Rebecca Fonté, OWA Founder and Artistic Director. “After much deliberation, Ronald Short's film project THE RINK was selected as the most deserving of the grant bearing the great artist’s name. THE RINK is a small film with large aspirations and is the kind of project Dan O'Bannon might mull over for years. We are excited to help bring Ronald's vision to the screen.”

Other Worlds Austin will award a $2,000 grant to Mr. Short with the intention of giving a helping nudge to his promising and deserving SciFi project.

The Dan O’Bannon Filmmaking Grant jury for 2018 was:

Steven DeGennaro, Writer/Director, FOUND FOOTAGE 3D

Samantha Inoue-harte, Japanese Anime Producer, Animetropolis

Jason Gorber, Managing Editor,

Brian Salisbury, President, Austin Film Critics Association

Logan Taylor, Programmer, SXSW/Fantastic Fest


Other Worlds Austin Screenplay Awards

Other Worlds Austin’s ongoing mission to encourage work in Science Fiction resulted in its fourth annual SciFi Screenplay Contest to reward creativity in its earliest stages and encourage writers to keep working in the genre. The contest is sponsored by Save the Cat!® and The Script Butcher.

The Best Feature Screenplay for 2018 is INFINITUS, written by Euroy Tan.

"INFINITUS has multiple classic SciFi elements and fuses them together to create a unique and interesting world,” says Dan Repp, OWA Senior Programmer and Event Director. “Euroy Tan's writing balances character development and world-building with precision. He has developed an original writing style that still fits comfortably into the traditional rules of screenwriting.”

The Best Short Screenplay for 2018 is STUCK, written by Katy Erin.

“Katy Erin’s LGBTQ-tinged SciFi thriller plants an intricate two-character cat-and-mouse interaction into a lunar landscape, where it plays to greater tension,” says Fonté. “In just a few pages, she builds two complete characters and the suggestion of a full world well beyond the boundaries of the script’s length. It’s readily filmable and a great piece for actors.”

The Best Teleplay Pilot for 2018 is USSURIA, written by Liliia Rivers.

“Liliia Rivers’ original pilot USSURIA tells a compelling story of an alternative post-war world,” says Don Elfant, OWA Director of Marketing and Development, “in which men don’t exist, and Kayden, a young army graduate, is struggling to find purpose in life. But the script is really about love and betrayal and wanting to know where we came from. Rivers’ strong voice establishes multiple stages of foreboding and lends depth to the characters. All of this and a strong twist ending portends great possibilities for a future series. 

And the overall winner of the 2018 Other Worlds Austin Screenplay Contest is the feature INFINITUS, written by Euroy Tan.

Mr. Tan will receive a $500 prize, a consultation with The Script Butcher to help them hone and refine his script, and a copy of Save the Cat!® Story Structure Software 3.0: Structure your screenplay the Save the Cat!® Way.  

“Like all good science fiction,” says Eric Harrelson, OWA programmer and Screenwriting Director, “INFINITUS builds on what came before it without feeling stale and worn. Euroy Tan has built an interesting, dynamic, and exciting world and filled it with rich, relatable characters, all while rooted firmly in a classic and iconic SciFi setting. We are excited to see what else Tan has in store for us, and I genuinely hope to see his work on the big screen.”


In addition to its audience and juror awards, Other Worlds Austin announced the winners of the Cthulhies, a series of awards given by the programming team in areas such as Script, Cinematography, Visual Effects and Acting. The winners for 2018 are:

 Feature Male Actor
Richard Hatch, DIMINUENDO

Feature Female Actor
Sandra Mae Frank, SOUL TO KEEP

Feature Script
Chad, Archibald, I’LL TAKE YOUR DEAD

 Feature Director

 Feature Cinematography
Alberto Lee, CYGNUS

 Feature Editing
D.C. Hamilton, THE FARE

Feature Score or Music
Steph Copeland, I’LL TAKE YOUR DEAD

Feature VFX
Alex Gans, THE AXIOM

Feature Production Design



Shorts Male Actor
Charlie Pecoraro, MALACOSTRACA

Shorts Female Actor
Stacy Snyder, HEARTLESS

Short Script
Corey Aumiller and Colin West, HERE & BEYOND

 Short Director

 Short Cinematography
Andrew Scott Baird, STARLETS

Short Editor
Mark Kerins, ECHOES

Short Score or Music
Stefan Paul Goetsch, THE BODY CLIENT

Short VFX
Mike “J Hook” Noble, THE SILVER

Short Production Design


About Other Worlds Austin

Other Worlds Austin is one of the premiere SciFi film festivals in the US, championing filmmakers and writers and bringing the best films to the ‘Geek Capital of the World.’

With a diverse and approachable team of programmers, OWA is building a network of SciFi fans and filmmakers, leading a loyal community, and launching SciFi films into the wider world. 

The fifth installment of Other Worlds Austin SciFi Film Festival took place at Flix Brewhouse December 6-9, 2018.

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About Flix Brewhouse

In addition to its flagship location in Round Rock, TX, Flix Brewhouse operates in Des Moines, Iowa and Carmel, Indiana, with more locations coming. The Flix Mix lobby bar and cafe is open seven days a week to the public, no ticket required, so you can come in and grab a bite to eat or have a locally brewed beer anytime!