UT student’s film places first at Cannes Film Festival

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Longhorn alumni took first place at the Cinéfondation Selection of the Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, France on Thursday with a film they wrote, directed and edited completely in Austin.

Annie Silverstein wrote and directed the award winning “Skunk,” and Monique Walton produced it – both women received their Master’s in Fine Arts from the University of Texas at Austin in 2013. The film focuses on the story of 14-year-old Leila whose pit bull kills a skunk. She then meets the neighborhood boy Marco, forming an unlikely bond until things begin to spin out of control. The girl is then forced to protect what she loves most at the cost of her innocence.

The crew was also entirely UT students.

Silverstein began writing the film in 2012 and worked on the script with her classmates and Assistant Professor P.J. Raval.

The Cinéfondation Selection selects 16 finalists from the pool of applicants, which this year included 1,631 student films from around the world, before deciding on a winner. The top 3 spots will receive their Cinéfondation prizes on Thursday, May 22 this year.

“Skunk” was also selected as a finalist in the British Academy of Film and Television Arts – Los Angeles student film competition.

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