Chicago-made ‘Knockout’ is going to Cannes

Melody Angel in "Knockout"

Melody Angel in “Knockout”

Alley Cake’s
story about
a female boxer
becomes second
48 Hour Film Project
winner to screen
in the Côte d’Azur

Chicago-made Knockout, a seven-minute short completed during last year’s 48 Hour Film Project, will screen at the 2019 Cannes Short Film Corner. Created by Alley Cake Films, it becomes the second consecutive 48HFP to earn a slot at the venerable program on the French Riviera, taking place May 20-25 this year.

The story of a female boxer who confronts massive opposition, Knockout begins with a fast-moving cascade of sight and sound before settling into a comfortable groove. The narrative is brought to life by compelling performances and impeccable editing.

The film also includes a character named Alexis Tacaro, a sleeping bag, and the line of dialogue, “you ask a lot of questions.” These elements were required to appear in every entry competing at last year’s 48 Hour Film Project. They were revealed to the participating team at the start of the weekend competition.



Besides shooting, cutting, and dealing with the last-minute details, the Knockout team wrote the script and secured filming locations over a two-day stretch last summer.

After winning Best Film, Best Editing, Best Writing, and the Audience Award at the 48 Hour Film Project, Knockout earned Best Editing, Best Cinematography, Best Lead Actress, and Best Directing honors at the 2018 Filmapalooza competition in Orlando.

The victories helped it become one of three from the U.S. that will screen at the 2019 Cannes Short Film Corner, May 20-25.

The last 48 Hour Film Project winner from Chicago to gain that distinction was HAMMERSMITH: Hurdle Of Dreams, a mockumentary completed during the 2017 competition.

Also read: Chicago-made HAMMERSMITH going to Cannes.

Among those thrilled by the back-to-back triumph is filmmaker Jerry Vasilatos, Chicago City Producer of the 48 Hour Film Project.

“That a Chicago 48HFP team will be going to the Cannes Film Festival for the second year in a row is a tremendous testimony to the quality and talent of Chicago’s independent film community,” he says. “We’re very proud to congratulate director Erik Scanlon and his team for once again demonstrating what Chicago has to offer!”

The 2019 48 Hour Film Project competition will take place August 23rd-25th, 2019. The entries will screen at the Music Box September 22nd and 23rd. The awards will be held on September 25th, 2019. For more information, click here.


The 48 Hour Film Project is an opportunity for filmmakers of all levels to practice their craft while making a film in a weekend and having it screen before an audience at a local theater. For more information, click here.

The Short Film Corner, true Forum dedicated to shorts filmmakers, takes place at the heart of the Film Market. For one week, it offers participants an opportunity to take part in a program of Professional Meetings, Workshops, Masterclasses and Panels — broaching different topics as distribution, festival strategy, and coproduction. The program aims to promote emerging talents and bring together both creation and the industry. Neither a selection nor a competition, the Short Film Corner — as a Film Market — is designed to boost networking between professionals.

   Melody Angel
   Lily Mojekwu
   James Earl Jones II
   William Dick

Director – Erik Scanlon
Director Of Photography – Cody Nieset
Editing – Cody Nieset, Erik Scanlon
Sound – Erik Scanlon, Cody Nieset, Savannah Stratton, Rosebud Harrison
Producers – Erik Scanlon, Savannah Stratton, Cody Nieset
Written By: B. B. Browne, Jonathan L. Green, Erik Scanlon Michael Mellini, Cody Nieset, Ian Martin and Savannah Stratton

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