Saturday, August 25, 2018

HollyShorts: BINI - Erblin Nushi Interview

Photo Content from Erblin Nushi

Born in Peja Kosovo in 1992, Erblin Nushi has been taking acting lessons since he was ten years old. His passion for film grew after following the footsteps of his sister who is also a professional actress. Among many passions, Erblin was a ski racer throughout his high school years. In 2010, him and his family moved to the United States. Erblin recently earned his B.A. from George Mason University where he studied film with a concentration in directing, and a minor in photography. 

In his two years at GMU, Erblin directed ten short films. His films have to festivals such as Virginia Film Festival, Washington West Film Festival, The Film Festival at Little Washington, Lux et Lex Film Festival, District Cinema Student Film Festival, Gold Reel Student Film Festival. 

BINI, short drama, 2018. (Writer, Director); The Eyes Behind BINI, short documentary, 2018. (Director); The Last Minute, short horror, 2018. (Writer, Director); Happy Moments, short drama, 2017. (Director); Gabriel’s Revolt, feature documentary, 2018. (Director); Peanut, short comedy, 2016. (Co-Writer, Co-Director); She’s Not Her, short horror, 2016. (Writer, Director); In Safe Hands, short drama, 2016. (Writer, Director); One Day, short doc, 2016. (Director); Black, short drama, 2015. (Writer, Director).


Photo Content from Erblin Nushi
When I was six years old, my family and I, along with thousands of other families in Kosovo, fled to a refugee camp in Albania to escape ethnic cleansing by Serbian forces. When we returned many months later, we found our oncebeautiful city ravaged. Homes had been looted and burned. The parks and playgrounds were destroyed. Our one and only movie theater decimated. As a child, I turned to creativity as a means of coping with the trauma, and I soon discovered the magic of storytelling and its transportive power. 

As an artist, I want to tell stories with the intention of helping to heal others. With BINI, I wish to do the same. I want people to see the innocence of children during war and how the actions of adults affect their future. I was just a boy who didn’t understand what was going on around him and because of it, I focused on protecting a piece of candy in the midst of chaos. Those who start war do so, in part, because they want something no matter what. My films intend to explore the darkness in adults and its origins as jealousy in children. I will continue writing from a place of experience and learned mistakes. Translating them into my films is important because I want to make films that educate, inspire, and empower people to not hurt themselves and others.

Lisa Thrasher, J.D., is an Independent Film Producer, Entertainment Law Specialist and a Film Business & Producing Professor at George Mason University. For over a decade, Lisa ran and served as the President of Film Production & Distribution at POWER UP Films, a Film Production Company for Women and the Queer community, overseeing all Film and content development, production and distribution, including: “GIRLTRASH: All Night Long;” “ITTY BITTY TITTY COMMITTEE,” (Berlinale “Teddy Award” Nominee & South by Southwest “Best Narrative Feature Jury Award); “Get to Know Us First” PSA (NBC, ABC, CBS); “Little Black Boot,” (Sundance) “Billy’s Dad is a Fudge-Packer” (Sundance) and “DEBS,” (Sundance, Berlinale); and Stuck (Sundance.)

At 20th Century Fox, Lisa conducted International Anti-Piracy Litigation, Trademark Prosecution, and International Anti-Piracy Affairs with Foreign Heads of State to protect the studio’s films. Lisa represented 20th Century Fox on the Motion Picture Association of America’s International Anti-Piracy Committee. 

Lisa earned her Juris Doctorate degree from Southwestern University School of Law in Los Angeles, focusing on Intellectual Property & Entertainment Law and studied at Parsons School of Design and Virginia Commonwealth University, earning a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Photography & Film. 

Lisa has spoken about queer filmmaking and distribution at a number of film festivals, including Frameline San Francisco LGBTQ; Miami LGBTQ; Belfast International; London LGBTQ; Out in Africa; Taipei Women’s; Barcelona LGBTQ; Madrid’s Spanish Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences; South by Southwest; and, was a Short Film Screener for the Sundance Film Festival. Lisa has served as a Juror at; The Tokyo Gay & Lesbian Film Festival; and, Torino GLBT Film Festival. In 2010, Lisa was named as one of the “Women We Love” by Go Magazine.

At the outbreak of the Kosovo War, six year old Bini is only thinking about his most prized possession, a piece of candy. When suddenly he and his family are packed into a crowded truck and faced with life threatening obstacles, Bini learns that candy may not be the only thing of value he loses that day.

Born in Prishtina, Kosovo in 2009, Lurni attends the elementary school of Prishtina, Emin Duraku. He is also currently enrolled at iSTAR, a private acting school for children and youth. Besides acting, Lurni is passionate about playing guitar and taking pictures with his camera.

Artiola was born in Gjilan, Kosovo in 2006. She’s the third child and the most ambitious out of the family. Artiola takes acting, modeling, and music lessons where she plays the piano. To date, Artiola has been part of many modeling events, piano concerts, and music festivals. She is currently acting in her second feature film. 

Born in Peja, Kosovo in 1986, Fjolla has been acting since her freshman year of high school. She attended the only arts high school in Kosovo where she majored in acting. She continued to the nation’s capital, Prishtina to earn her undergrad and master’s degree in acting from the University of Prishtina. After moving to the United States, Fjolla starred in two of her brother’s films and co-wrote one of them.

Born in Kosovo, Eshref Durmishi is one of the country's most established actors working across TV, Film & Theatre. He gained international success playing the lead role in the Greek / German co-production film Eduart. He also produced and starred in the Oscar Nominated film 'Shok' which portrayed elements of his life.

Armond Morina was born on December 1973 in Gjakova, Kosovo. He graduated in 1996 from the Academy of Arts in Prishtina majoring in acting. He acted and produced numerous short and feature films in Kosovo. He became a household name with his role in Kosovo’s sitcom “Modern Family.” He had a recurring role in the show for nine years.

Born in Peja, Kosovo in 2006. Elena has been taking ballet classes since she was seven years old. She has performed in multiple theaters around Kosovo and the National Theater of Albania. She’s an animal lover and a proud owner of her pup, Meg. “BINI” is her screen debut.

Born in Kosovo in 1987, Florentina fell in love with acting since her freshman year of high school. She studied acting and earned her B.A. and master’s from the Academy of Arts in Prishtina. She has received multiple awards for her acting roles in theater and film. Besides being a busy actress, Florentina also taught acting for two years at the private school, iSTAR. Florentina now lives in Los Angeles.

Erblin Nushi on the Red Carpet with JBN Journalist, Rachel Litfin.


HollyShorts takes place August 9-18, 2018 at the TCL Chinese Theater, Harmony Gold Theater and other locations in Hollywood. Nearly 400 short films will compete for the festival’s top prizes. Last year HollyShorts finalists included 3 out of the 5 Live Action Oscar nominees and the winning short Silent Child from Rachel Shenton and Chris Overton. This year, HollyShorts received an all-time record 5,000 submissions from over 80 countries. The competition will feature Live Action, Animation and Documentary Shorts as well as web series, student shorts, music videos, TV pilots, and VR. The festival also features a screenplay competition where the winning short gets greenlit, shot and shown at next year’s festival courtesy of Seattle Film Summit.

Video/Edit: James Vallesteros (@jamesvallesteros). Audio: Edward Chung.

HollyShorts Film Festival is an organization devoted to showcasing the best and brightest short films from around the globe, advancing the careers of filmmakers through screenings, networking events, and various panel and forums. The Oscar Qualifying HollyShorts Film Festival showcases the top short films produced 40- minutes or less. Categories include Short Animation, Short Live Action, Short Documentary, Music Video, Webisode, Commercials, TV, and Digital Microbudget.
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