Apricot Cast: Ewan Leslie, Laura Gordan
Director: Ben Briand
Genre: Romance, Drama
Synopsis: A chance encounter between a mysterious man and a beautiful woman soon becomes deeply personal. Playful prods about the woman's first childhood kiss sparks a series of fragmented memories. The intoxicating situation turns when the mysterious, handsome man begins to take notes on their conversation.
Cherub Pictures director, Ben Briand's critically acclaimed short film, Apricot (starring Ewan Leslie and Laura Gordan) has continued to achieve worldwide success by being voted Best Narrative Film on Vimeo by its community of over 3 million members, at the inaugural 2010 Vimeo Awards.
The Vimeo Festival & Awards honour the best in online film and video from around the world in multiple categories, with finalists culled from over 6,500 submissions and voted on by a group of esteemed judges from the global creative community considered the best in the industries of film, art and tech.
The Audience Awards were chosen by online peers and fellow creators on Vimeo, with Apricot the only "Narrative Film" to win the popular vote.
Vimeo was named this year by Time magazine as the top website for video and moving image content. Its online community is exceptionally active, with upwards of 16,000 new videos uploaded daily, 5,000 comments a day made and its users "liking" approx 30,000 videos daily.
Apricot has also enjoyed considerable festival success having screened on the opening night of the St Kilda Film Festival this year and at the 32nd Moscow International Film Festival 2010.
But it's online where the film has really captured the attention of film lovers and industry around the world and has garnered a massive following.
"The online success of the film via Vimeo is a true testament to our release strategy and capacity for the film to reach its audience." said Ben Briand.
"Apricot really found its audience through non-conventional channels and viewing mediums, with far more people having watched the film online than through the traditional festival environment. It's now achieved well over 300,000 views online, has been translated into over a dozen languages and has featured on over 200 blogs across a variety of film, photography, fashion and advertising sites worldwide. Attending the inaugural Vimeo festival in New York was an amazing experience but receiving this accolade from the audience and the Vimeo users is pretty overwhelming."
Sites that have featured Apricot include the prestigious UK film site Director's Notes; groundbreaking agency Weiden + Kennedy's influential blog; and pop culture authority, yayeveryday.com. There are also nearly 2,000 fans of the film on Facebook.
Ben Briand's award winning work is often praised for its distinctive approach. He forms delicately crafted visual images whilst eliciting honest human performances. His work is cinematic in style and his technical eye always enables a beautiful yet highly contemporary aesthetic.
Following graduation from the College of Fine Arts, he won the coveted major prize for the Optus ONE80 Project in its first year, directing the critically acclaimed one-hour film Hammer Bay, produced for MTV.
Ben has also directed a variety of distinctive projects featuring Cate Blanchett, The Vines and Public Enemy as well as directing TV campaigns for clients such as Sony Ericsson, Toyota, Telstra, Westfield, Ballantines Whisky, Moccona and frequent collaborations with high-end accessories brand Benah.
He was awarded a New Director Award at Adfest (2009) followed by a Silver SHOTS Young Director Award at the Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival for his Ballantines Soccer Can TVC, which also picked up two Pencils for Ben's Direction and Editing at AWARD.
Vicks VapoDrops Beatbox Choir has picked up numerous awards including Spikes, two Silver Medals at the Phoenix Awards and a Gold at the New York Festivals' International Advertising and Television and Film Awards.
2010 also saw Ben complete two critically acclaimed short films Apricot (starring Ewan Leslie and Laura Gordon) and Some Static Started.