Blood Moon Awards – 2021



Winner:  The Guard Station by Matt Zappala

“With good atmosphere, a solid homage to the creature feature movie genre, and good cinematography – The Guard Station is a winner.” – Xavier Baeyens

“Startling, and emotionally dark, brooding – even carnal… The Guard Station gets under your skin, just like one of those dirty late-night VHS films that no one forgets from their childhood. As I often say to great entrants – when can we expect the next film please?!” – Ben Rider

Nominees: He Made a Big One by Kolja Haaf, Selva Oscura by Jacob Swafford, Under the Surface by Trevor Hagen


Quarantine Category

  • 45 Days Later by Baptiste Perraudin – Winner: Best Score (Arnaud Cordelier), Special Mention: Winner: Best Sound (Baptiste Perraudin and Arnaud Cordelier) “The use of sound in this short film is exceptional – there’s a real sense of tone and style through it.”
  • Finding Light by Katrina Villarreal – Nominated: Best Director, Best Quarantine Short Film – “The film’s style, and the imagination behind it, is solidly delivered in this whacky animation film. Very enjoyable.”
  • Killer Brownie by Ignacio López Vacas – Nominated: Best Quarantine Short Film – “A fun blend of comedy, lockdown baking and horror.”
  • The Other Side by Tom Xu – Nominated: Best Quarantine Short Film – “This film wastes no time being just a flat out fantastic horror!”
  • A Stop for Nothing by Deep Malhotra – Nominated: Special Mention: Best Surreal Horror – “The short finds a sort of balance when it comes to VFX and wacky storytelling. All in all a fun theme park ride to be had.”
  • Long Distance by Yudi Zhang – Nominated: Best Quarantine Short Film – “Personally tired of the zoom video shorts at this point… but this is a really well-acted one, congrats!”
  • He Made a Big One by Kolja Haaf – Winner: Best Quarantine Short Film: “At the core of this film is a really grand understanding of cinematic language – one which is used to great strength by the team behind it… the acting is on point, the photography and edit are really quite solid, engaging and eye-catching… the concept is fresh and unique.”
  • Selva Oscura by Jacob Swafford – Winner: Best Director, Nominated: Best Quarantine Short Film, Nominated: Best Actress (Lindsay Vernon) – “Fantastic short. Fantastic carefree performance by Vernon, who clearly trusted and engaged with the film’s vision. And also – one personal side note to the auteur: Dear Mr. Swafford – please stop making short films and make a feature film… this was just a perfect delight and you deserve a larger canvas!”

Film Entries 

  • The Performing Chef by William OatesNominated: Best Short/Feature Film: Budget – between $1,000 – $5,000, Nominated: Best Actor (Patrick Bell) – “The simple almost silent story is largely dependent on two factors here: the delightful gothic flavour that Oates cooks up, and well – the convincing menacing performance of the comical Mr. Bell. All in all, this is a well-balanced horror meal. Eat up!”
  • When The Ticking Stops by Barbara Spevack – Nominated: Best Ensemble Cast – “The cast of Ticking help confirm it as a sort of mash up of horror and kitsch comedy. It’s entertaining and light-headed thanks to this.”
  • Red Hill Phantasia by William Stancik – Nominated: Special Mention: Best Micro-Budget Use – “The film seems a bit lost in its own digital world… but that also happens to be the highlight… the film is a ‘new media’ project, and very much feels like an exploration of the medium as well as the story it is telling at hand.”
  • Crock Pot by Ty Jones – Nominated: Winner: Best Cinematography (Chris Commons), Short/Feature Film: Budget – more than $5,000, Best Actress (Jessi Burkette) – “Flashy with its looks… and stylish, this crock pot is cracking good fun… Burkette sort of steals the show.”
  • The Guard Station by Matt Zappala – Winner: Short/Feature Film: Budget – more than $5,000, Winner: Best Writing, Nominated: Best Director, Best Actor (Jayden Arts) – “Ron Arthurs help introduce the film with a comedic palette… but it is the shift change, which recalls the fiery opening, which really seals this as a fantastic short film. Jayden Arts, as this fumbling leading man, is perfect bait for the beautifully designed creature film. Just fantastic overall really.” 
  • Godforsaken by Ali Akbar Akbar Kamal – Winner: Best Ensemble Cast – “A solid performance is to be had by all… including that feeling of satisfaction from a self aware POV camera story.”
  • Seeds by Skip Shea – Nominated: Short/Feature Film: Budget – more than $5,000 – “Nicely shot, especially with its use of black and white.”
  • Orcus by Peter Daniel Kane, Jimmy Hagri – Winner: Short/Feature Film: Budget – between $1,000 – $5,000, Nominated: Best Ensemble Cast – “Mighty vomitty good fun for the entire family!”
  • The Perfect Boyfriend List by Ambre Vanneste – Nominated: Short/Feature Film: Budget – between $1,000 – $5,000, Best Actress (Lana Howe), Best Actor (Ruben Francq) – “Overall, the project is very nicely rounded… though a little long/slow at times for a short… the lighting is very creative, as are the props at hand… but the real highlights are the performances and scale of the project. The acting is the best bit… the actors do their best to make these scenarios convincing.”
  • Wicca Book by Vahagn Karapetyan – Nominated: Short/Feature Film: Budget – less than $1,000 – “Wicca Book is wicked good fun!”
  • Stalker by Rodrigo V. Bustamante – Nominated: Best Director (Rodrigo V. Bustamante) – “Lovely atmosphere is raised here by the colour filters, the sound and the general strong understanding of film language.”
  • Never Go Alone by Yaneira Davis – Nominated: Short/Feature Film: Budget – less than $1,000, Best Actress (Yaneira Davis) – “Davis creates a true urban horror here. Her almost silent performance is fantastic. The slasher dip of genre is also delightfully scary!”
  • Devil by Karl Hanner – Nominated: Budget – less than $1,000, Best Writing – “The film does at times suffer from what I’d describe as prop porn: too much emphasis is placed on props being used for performance and so on… but all in all, the film slides carefully into a particular tone which is often neglected in horror films – the fear of mankind itself, and the uneven psychological devices that may occur when a weapon is introduced into the world.” 
  • BRAINS The Cure for Hope by Anastasios Traikopoulos – Winner: Best Editing (Łukasz Augustyniak, Anastasios Traikopoulos), Nominated: Best Ensemble Cast, Best Actor (Anastasios Traikopoulos) – “The film finds a great balance of comedy and performance… but the real star is its assembly – editing plays a key part in good this short is.”
  • The Finishing Touch by Johan Nayar – Nominated: Short/Feature Film: Budget – less than $1,000 – “The film is perhaps a breath away from being perfect. The photography has some great camera angles, but it trips up occasionally… and likewise, the pace is close to being great, but too trips a bit… overall though, it is quite satisfying, and a very impressive use of low budget production.”
  • Sleep Well by Mauro Grosso – Nominated: Best Sound – “The film has a great sense of mood thanks to its use of sound design.”
  • Sorrow World by Bryan Ortiz – Winner: Short/Feature Film: Budget – less than $1,000 – “There’s too much music in this… but overall, the cast do a great job, and the overall use of location is very impressive.”
  • Don’t Wake Up in the Middle of the Night by Matthew Quaid – Nominated: Best Director – “Quaid’s use of camera angles and sound design is a great layered effect in terms of creating a solid atmosphere.”
  • Special by Joshua Nelson – Nominated: Best Writing – “There are plenty of characters here… and plenty of stories to go with them…”
  • Night of the Jarrawog by Paddy Malone, Jack Malone – Winner: Best Actor (Jack Malone), Nominated: Best Writing – “(Jack) Malone does this over the top horror comedy thing that the likes of Bela Lagosi built a career on. Likewise the script is just a great blend of character, comedy and horror. Bravo!”
  • The First Boy by Zak Bandit – Winner: Best Actress (Liana Osgood), Nominated: Best Writing – “Osgood is barking mad… her co-star is also wonderful. But she (and her character) really bring the nuts to the fruitcake!”
  • Under the Surface by Trevor Hagen – Nominated: Short/Feature Film: Budget – less than $1,000, Best Director – “A seriously good use of VFX, imagination and genre in this one. Also, the lead’s performance is spot on!”
  • Dwellers by Drew Fortier – Nominated: Best Ensemble – “The cast of characters provide add a great feeling of locale to this project.””


  • Dream State by John Aldridge – Nominated: Best Cinematography – “Though I am personally not convinced that this is a web series (ie it was entered in the wrong category), I will say this regardless – Dream State is brilliantly shot. It has a scent of Herzog’s remake of Nosferatu. It’s really enjoyable.” 


Christmas Slasher poster

Winner: Christmas Slasher by Destiny Soria – “Bold in its style, technique and texture –  Slasher is presented as a retro poster with much to desire.”

Nominees: Inner Demons by Mihnea Cernat, Surprise by Mihnea Cernat, The Performing Chef by William Oats, Selva Obscura by Jacob Swafford, Miss Final Girl by Andrea Hays, The House At The End by Neil Harget, Kneeling by Stanislav Domanský, Can You Breathe by James C Newman and Amityville Legend by Michael Moutsatsos.

The Scripts

Best Script: Winner: Casual Dating by Michael Lake and Stuart G. Robertson – “Overall the script is quite well rounded, and definitely has that something that actors will love biting their teeth into.” | Nominees: A Loving Embrace with Malicious Intent by Tyler Schultz – “The texture and setting of this script is lovely.”, Lockridge by Mikeal Burgin – “This one oozes style.”, George Washington Slept Here! by Sam Robotham – “A lovely and unexpected blend of concept and genre.”

Best Scare: Winner: The Man in the Hat by Phyllis Allison – “Some genuine creepy stuff here.” | Nominees: The Strawberries Ain’t For Picking by Milethia Thomas – “Lovely subgenre of horror here – it’s all nature, slugs and bugs. Yuck.”, , Amityville Legend by Michael Moutsatsos – “I’m quite the Amityville fan myself… I’ve even read the books… so I can safely say this stab at the established world is quite great.”, Dummy by David-Matthew Barnes – “Overall the tone is consistent and quite horrible (in the best of ways).”

Best Script Technique: Winner: Mourn by DW Medoff – “There are some typos, but ultimately it is the rather unusual concept, and its structuring into a horror film, which makes this a fantastic example of film writing technique. Story becomes cinema in these sorts of contemplations.” | Nominees: Calling Card by Peter Hardy – “Whilst not written with traditional scriptwriting software (as this was a word doc), it is impressively organised to be a traditional script. Bravo!”, House Rules by Daxton Dubach – “Very concisely written.”

Best Micro-Budget Script: Winner: Wrathwood by David J Keogh – “In the context of what horror features often look like, this location based horror is quite great and tightly written. It may be a little heavy handed on the (quietly) predictable side… but when it comes to horror, that is also rather important – it helps sell the product to an audience (so this is a compliment). Watch out for so many actor cues in terms of delivery… remember they like some freedom too.” | Nominees: Shadow Fable by Margaret Kane-Rowe – “A nice low cost project, with solid use of a few locations… ps. Watch out for those slug lines – some seem to confuse the syntax of time of day and location.”

Special Mention Winners: Best Subgenre: Meth Bears by Max Leabo – “Comedic and fun. We suggest you submit the script without the reader’s notes.” | Best Dialogue: Meddle Like Hell by Michael J. Mantsourani Jr. – “The characters come alive with lots of pop and fizzle dialogue.”, Best Use of Locales: The Demons I Sleep With by Endija Stanislavska – “The spaces inhabited in this script shape it. They’re creepy – and the script is chilling thanks to this factor.”, Best Characterisation: Penny by Rachel S. Thomas-Medwid – “Hands down the best characters in this season’s submissions.”

The Trailers

Winner:  The Ballad of Lucy Sands by Steve Baldwin – “This looks like one mighty project… but above all – the trailer is designed to entice, and it has definitely wet our appetite!”

Nominees: Ebersberg by Manuel Weiss, Christmas Slasher by Destiny Soria, Sid’s Lake by Kevin Ruiz, Can You Breathe? by James C Newman and The Last Wolves by Iker Bilbao.

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