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  • Writer's pictureGabriel Rhenals

Blog Post #104: Gasparilla Int'l Film Festival 2011!

Updated: Jan 2, 2022

Ten years ago, I attended the 5th Annual Gasparilla International Film Festival in Tampa, FL to represent my/Hard Edge Films' 11th short film, The Nap! It was my first full-fledged film festival experience and quite an unforgettable one at that!

Seeing my first HD production on a sizable screen with a sizable audience was a definite thrill as was fielding questions during my first-ever Q&A (I thought I performed rather well considering this was before I joined Toastmasters!). I also enjoyed seeing many interesting shorts and a feature or two from other South Florida filmmakers.

Left to right: Alonso J. Rhenals and Gabriel Rhenals

At the festival, I met Billy Corben, director of Cocaine Cowboys, in the first of several interactions I've had with him since then. I also saw famed character actor, M. Emmet Walsh, and veteran actor, Tom Berenger, both of whom were receiving lifetime achievement awards at the festival that year. But more importantly, I forged relationships with several other local filmmakers and/or film festival organizers throughout the event: Aaron Hose, R. Presley Stephens, Nick Corrao, John Schaub and Presley Adamson.

It was a great experience overall and the festival laurels will always keep special memories for me!

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