Daria Kashcheeva-s-Electra - wins the best short in Toronto.

Blending live-action and stop-motion was the way to go at this year's Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), the two films that mixed technology were the Shortcut Competition

Daria Kashcheeva's Electra was the jury's favorite short animation or live-action. In addition to the CAD賞10,000 award for Best Short Film, Electra qualified for the 2024 Oscar. Her film "Daughter" was nominated for the best animated short in 2020.

Electra had loads of buzz coming off competition screenings at Cannes and Annecy and screened at the competition at the Ottawa International Animation Festival This film is told from a first-person perspective of an adult titular protagonist who recalls her 10th birthday and the lasting trauma it caused. Her memories are intertwined with dreams and imagination, and are expressed in an off-kilter mix of cinematic animation techniques. Complex parental relationships are alluded to, and Electra may be an unreliable narrator in terms of the fact of her youth, but her pain is real

According to TIFF judges:

idiosyncratic and skilled, this sickly sweet nightmare film packs a mighty final punch. Visceral and infinitely textured, it leads us down a distorted rabbit hole with thematic and visual prowess. With great pleasure, the jury presents a shortcut award for the best short film to director Electra Daria Kashcheeva. Electra resonates with discomfort under the skin after the film is over.

Electra was not the only mixed-media film to attract the attention of Shortcut judges. Renee Zhan's Shé (Snake) won the Share Her Journey Award at the Canadian Festival.

A combination of horror, comedy and 10-year-old anxiety, Snake is stressful on a young violinist in a London youth orchestra, causing her internalized monsters to take physical form.

The jury said:

Because of the film's incredibly original and surreal creativity, which is consistent with the beautiful acting, the jury is excited to give Renee Zhan the Short Cuts Share Her Journey Award for Shé (Snake). It is not common to be attracted to grotesque creatures in films, but here they captured the hearts of the audience thanks to their humor and charm. The film's main live-action trailer gives an immediate glimpse of one of the charming "grotesque" stop-motion creatures sitting at the dinner table.1

Hayao Miyazaki's boy and Heron, who opened this year's TIFF, were second runners-up in the feature-length competition. The next film will be screened at the San Sebastian Film Festival on 9/22 and will make its U.S. debut at the New York Film Festival on 10/1.