AND…MOTHER OF THE WEEK WINS THE “AUDIENCE CHOICE AWARD”
Okay, so I was nominated and didn’t win “Best Actress in a Short”, but I’m fine with that because the competition was STIFF! I am honored to be included with the other ladies nominated, including the winner, who were amazing and so were their films. BUT, I did win “Breakout Performance in a Short Film”, and Mother of the Week won the “Audience Choice Award”!!!!
Now, I had a speech prepared if I were to win “Best Actress” and here it is:
“First of all, I’d like to thank Larry Rosen and his amazing staff at the Northeast Film Festival. This is a great honor to share a screen with all the incredibly talented actresses and filmmakers here. I’d like to thank: our awesome cast which includes our generous and patient EP, Mark Lobene; my co-producer, jewelry designer, and best friend since 10th Grade, Adrienne Paxton; my inspiration, Pam Gordy; our DP Hai-Tao Wu; our set designer Rhonda Malhotra; our wonderful editor Nick Guldner; our scorers Robert Kessler and Ethan Neuberg; Steve Pollak/ Dude of Life, and Charlie de Saint Phalle who wrote our theme song; of course, our director Lee Davis and the rest of the fabulous crew; my co-writer Fred Stroppel- THE funniest writer I know. And finally, my babies: Miles and Mac and my husband Phil (I promise none of this was written about you– right..) I love you. And I’m sharing this award with my Mom who more than taught me how to burn pork chops.”
Well, when I didn’t win…
…I could feel the adrenaline drain down out my candy apple red toe nails. Slowly, I pretty much slouched down in my seat and got comfy, calmly cheering on and supporting all of my fellow filmmakers. My “Mother of the Week” team in attendance got up and snuck out because of their early mornings the next day.
Boy, am I certainly glad I didn’t loosen the straps on my shoes! Because out of the blue I hear, “For Breakout Performance in a Short Film: Jennifer Jiles in Mother of the Week!” WHAT??!!! I look over to Rhonda, who was the only one from our film left besides me, and she’s like, “WHAT?!!!” And so I run down the stairs to get the award and this is what I can remember of what I said in my acceptance speech:
“OMG! I can’t believe this! I was totally slouched down in my seat. So unexpected! Thank you, Larry! (big hug to Larry) Thank you to the amazing crew of Northeast Film Festival! Wow, this is so nice! Omg, what an honor to be here with all these amazing actresses and filmmakers! Like that one there (staring into the eyes of one who in shock, is staring back)! Omg, okay, I’d like to thank all the wonderful actors in our film who made me look so good and my Executive Producer Mark Lobene who also plays my husband, and especially for saying we should make a film and my jewelry designer, co-producer and best friend Adrienne Paxton and Hai Tao Wu, our DP, and (I see Rhonda filming my speech on her phone) and to Rhonda Malhotra our set designer and all to all the rest of the crew and to SO MANY PEOPLE! Omg, thank you so much! Wow! blah, blah…wh…ohh…ooo… (and whatever the eff else I said.)”
Lesson learned: rehearse and memorize your speech and be ready for anything! YOU NEVER KNOW (thanks NY Lottery writer for that phrase).
PS: Almost directly after that, I hear: “And the winner of the Audience Choice Award: Mother of the Week!!” So, I get up and grab Rhonda and then halfway back down to the stage I say, “Do I come down again?” Larry says “yes”, we keep making our way to the podium. Before we get there, I say, “We had a lot of people come to the screening! heh, heh” Then we get to the mic, I hug him and thank him again and say “Thank you! (pause) That’s it! (look over to Larry) Should I say more?” Larry smiles and says, “No, that’s good.” And then I laugh and continue with “Omg, wow, thanks so much to everyone who came to the screening and for voting for us!!!” Rhonda smiles and we make our way back to our seats, both grinning ear to ear, me, a deer in the headlights.