Meet the winners of SHIFT Film Forum 2023

Professionals Jury and Audience decided on the winners.

The ninth edition of SHIFT Film Forum proved to be truly remarkable. Running from September 13th to September 17th, the event featured an engaging program with films, masterclasses and other activities for both filmmakers and the audience. The professional jury deliberated on three winners, while the audience had the chance to vote after the screening for the the winner of the audience award.


This year there were six films selected from Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands to compete in the SHIFT Short Film Competition. The professional jury deliberated on the winners for the Best Film and Special Jury Mention. Besides the film awards, they also deliberated on the SHIFT Film Pitch. Members of the jury were producer Sammy Wisniewski from the Netherlands, director Henry Disotuar from Belgium and German producer Lukas Koll.

Award Winners

  • Best FilmThank you for your patience!, Simon van der Zande (Belgium) 
    Jury statement:
     "The winning film talks about a very difficult topic in a a way that opens up dialog, without choosing a side. The acting and directing is sublime and shows a remarkable artistic handwriting and talent. Therefore we are really happy that we had the patience for this twenty minute bus ride."
  • Special Jury Mention – The Show, by Frederic Kau (Germany) 
    Jury statement: "Behind amazing acting, great production value and precise directing, this film discusses an array of important topics. Through an intimate decision of a young couple taken into the spotlight, The Show connects personal life decisions with global topics."
  • Audience Award – Thank you for your patience!, Simon van der Zande (Belgium)
  • Best Film Pitch – Jeroen Zeegers with The Excavator 
    Jury Statement: "The Excavator convinced us with a simple yet strong premise. Jeroen had a clear vision of the look and feel of the film. We believe that he can bring the comedy to the screen."

SHIFT Film Forum

SHIFT Film Forum 2023 took place from September 13 to September 17 in ECI Cultuurfabriek in Roermond and Royal Theater Heerlen. There were six short films selected for the SHIFT Short Film Competition. Besides that, we screened two Limburgian short films Days of Spring and Frost during our SHIFT Special out of competition screening. The Forum kicked off with a Ukrainian Focus special in Royal Theater Heerlen.

Next to the screenings there were also the SHIFT Masterclasses: Script coached by Anna van Melick and Producing by Ivo Siebum. Both masterclasses were sold out. This edition of SHIFT Film Forum included the SHIFT Film Pitch and the second edition of the European talent development program Directors Village.