The Saddest Boy in the World

The Saddest Boy in the World

Dir. Jamie Travis
35mm / 13:30 / 2006

Timothy Higgins, picked last for the team, is the saddest boy in the world. Friendlessness, suburban complacency and prescription drugs have conspired against the youngster to make this his worst year yet. Musical Chairs and birthday cake can't save him now - at his ninth birthday party, Timothy prepares for a show-stopping suicide.

c. Modern Family Productions

Official Selection - Highlights: 

2015 Prague Short Film Festival, Czech Republic *10 year retrospective of the best short films
2007 Karlovy Vary Film Festival
2007 Rotterdam Film Festival
2007 Slamdance Film Festival
2006 Toronto International Film Festival
2006 Vancouver International Film Festival

Festival History: 

2006

Toronto International Film Festival (ON)
Atlantic Film Festival (Halifax, NS)
Cinefest Sudbury International Film Festival (ON)
Vancouver International Film Festival (BC)
Calgary International Film Festival (AB)
Edmonton International Film Festival (AB)
Resfest Canada (Vancouver, Montreal, Toronto)
Image+Nation International LGBT Film Festival (Montreal, QC)
Whistler Film Festival (BC)

2007

Slamdance Film Festival (Park City, UT)
International Film Festival Rotterdam (The Netherlands)
Moving Pictures Film Festival (Vancouver, BC)
Victoria Independent Film and Video Festival (BC)
Reel to Real Youth Festival (Vancouver, BC)
Cineworks screening (Vancouver, BC)
NFB screening (Vancouver, BC)
Island Media Arts Co-operative (Charlottetown, PEI)
Women in Film Festival (Vancouver, BC)
Mardi Gras Film Festival (Sydney, Australia)
Reel Canada Screening Series (Toronto, ON)
Miami International Film Festival (FL)
South by Southwest Film Festival (Austin, TX)
Florida Film Festival (Orlando)
Melbourne Queer Film Festival (Australia)
Kingston Canadian Film Festival (ON)
East Lansing Film Festival (MI)
Cleveland International Film Festival (OH)
NexT International Short Film Festival Bucharest (Romania)
Festival de cinema des 3 ameriques (Quebec City)
Small Potato Film Festival (Pocatello, ID)
Toronto International Film Festival Film Circuit (Red Deer, AB)
Crossroads Film Festival (Jackson, MS)
IndieLisboa (Lisbon, Portugal)
Kansas City Filmmakers Jubilee (MO)
Indianapolis International Film Festival (IN)
Philadelphia Film Festival (PA)
Independent Film Festival of Boston (MA)
Antelope Valley Independent Film Festival (CA)
Outfest (Los Angeles, CA)
Medina del Campo Film Festival (Spain)
Gen Art Film Festival (New York City, NY)
Outtakes New Zealand Queer Film Festival (Aukland, Wellington, Christchurch)
Resfest Brasil (Rio de Janeiro)
Fairy Tales Film Festival (Calgary, AB)
Maryland Film Festival (Baltimore)
Edges Film Festival (Victoria, BC)
Turin Gay & Lesbian Film Festival (Italy)
Screen Door FIlm (Austin, TX)
InsideOut Toronto Lesbian and Gay Film and Video Festival (ON)
NewFest (New York, NY)
Provincetown International Film Festival (MA)
Frameline International LGBT Film Festival (San Francisco, CA)
Seattle International Film Festival (WA)
Karlovy Vary Film Festival (Czech Republic)
Leo Awards Film Festival (Vancouver, BC)
Yorkton Short Film and Video Festival (SK)
Philadelphia International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival (PA)
Walker Art Centre (Minneapolis, MN)
Milwaukee Gay and Lesbian Film Festival (WI)
Artscape (Baltimore, MD)
Copenhagen Gay and Lesbian Film Festival (Denmark)
La Casa Encendida (Madrid, Spain)
IndyFringe (Indianapolis, IN)
Brussels Pink Screens Film Festival (Belgium)
Imago International Young Film and Video Festival (Fundão, Portugal)
Milwaukee International Film Festival (WI)
Southwest Gay and Lesbian Film Festival (Santa Fe and Albuquerque, New Mexico)
1 Reel Film Festival, Bumbershoot Festival (Seattle, WA)
Mecal Festival Internacional de Cortometrajes de Barcelona (Spain)
Lesbian and Gay Film Festival Hannover (Germany)
Vladivostok International Film Festival (Russia)
Brooklyn Independent (NY)
Hamburg International Lesbian and Gay Film Festival (Germany)
Fresno Reel Pride (CA)
Denver Film Society (CO)
Bunker International Film Festival (Ventimiglia, Italy)
Outfest Wednesdays, Egyptian Theater (Los Angeles, CA)
Warsaw International Film Festival (Poland)
Q Fest: Houston Gay and Lesbian International Film Festival (TX)
LesGaiCineMad, Madrid's International Lesbian and Gay Film Festival (Spain)
InsideOut Ottawa (ON)
ImageOut: Rochester Lesbian and Gay Film and Video Festival (NY)
BendFilm (Bend, Oregon)
Tampa International Lesbian and Gay Film Festival (FL)
Mix Brasil (São Paulo)
St. Louis International Film Festival (MO)
Uppsala Kortfilm Festival (Sweden)
Portland Lesbian and Gay Film Festival (OR)
Seattle Lesbian and Gay Film Festival (WA)
Pittsburgh International Lesbian and Gay Film Festival (PA)
Pink Film Days (Amsterdam, The Netherlands)
Chicago Lesbian and Gay Film Festival (IL)
Czech Lesbian and Gay Film Festival (Brno, Prague)
Casa Décor (Miami, FL)
Santa Barbara Lesbian and Gay Film Festival (CA)
Cucalorus Film Festival (Wilmington, NC)
Idaho Queer Film Festival (Boise)
Northwest Film and Video Festival (Portland, OR)
Hong Kong Lesbian and Gay Film Festival
Festival du cinéma international en Abitibi-Témiscamingue (QC)
Spokane Film Festival (WA)
Notre Dame Film Society (Cleveland, OH)
Reelout Queer Film and Video Festival (Kingston, CA)

"One of our favourite short films ever. Seriously. Jamie Travis, of the superb Patterns 2 & 3 (part of the Short Cuts Canada Programme 1) has created a miniature masterpiece; impeccable set design, humour and timing. The self-explanatory story is a wonder, and if Jamie Travis isn't the next big thing we'll be entirely gutted. This man has talent, and we can't emphasise this enough - you must see this film. 5/5" The Torontoist
Mathew Kumar (Sept 07, 2006)

"...there is an exhilarating, off-the-wall trio of films by British Columbia filmmaker Jamie Travis. As one of the most original voices in Canadian cinema, Travis contributes Patterns 2 and Patterns 3 - the sequels to the fractured love story he screened in Toronto last year - plus the twisted, cruelly funny drama, The Saddest Boy In The World."
- The Toronto Sun, Bruce Kirkland (September 8, 2006)

"In a jarring juxtaposition that plays with your logic, The Saddest Boy in the World features a color palette and musical score that is more reminiscent of a happy old-style physical comedy than a melancholic look at childhood depression. Timothy Higgins, our titular saddest boy, is cute and pathetic at the same time, and is wonderfully played by Benjamin B. Smith. Jamie Travis' film keeps you wondering whether to laugh or to cry at Timothy's plight, and culminates in a fantastic yet disurbing final scene. This is hands-down the best short film I have ever seen."
- BlogTO, Sameer Vasta (September 9, 2006)

"His shorts combine the macabre subject matter of David Lynch and Todd Solondz with the art direction of Wes Anderson. The end result is something that seems wholly original and much more than pastiche . . . Passivity isn't really an option when watching his films as the mise en scène is handled with the meticulousness of a serial killer and immediately draws you in . . . If Travis can pull off a 90 minute feature that keeps your attention like his 15 minute shorts do, then surely he'll have his own stable of agents, managers and leeches all hugging it out behind the scenes."
- Ion Magazine, Michael Mann (November 2006)

Awards

Best Live Action Short - St. Louis International Film Festival (MI, USA)
Honourable Mention, Best Canadian Short, Atlantic Film Festival (Halifax, NS)
Best Canadian Short, Calgary International Film Festival (AB)
Best Short Film, Victoria Independent Film and Video Festival (BC)
Best Comedy, Kansas City Filmmakers Jubilee (MO)
Audience Favourite, NexT International Short Film Bucharest (Romania)
Best Male Short, InsideOut Toronto Lesbian and Gay Film and Video Festival (ON)
Special Jury Mention, Turin Gay & Lesbian Film Festival (Italy)
Best Male Short, Philadelphia International Gay & Lesbian Film Festival (PA)
Best Overall Sound in a Short Drama, Leo Awards (Vancouver, BC)
Best Sound Editing in a Short Drama, Leo Awards (Vancouver, BC)
Best Costume Design in a Short Drama, Leo Awards (Vancouver, BC)
Best Art Direction, Golden Sheaf Awards (Yorkton, SK)
Special Jury Mention, Prague Short Film Festival (Czech Republic)
Honourable Mention, Best Short Film, Czech GLBT Film Festival Mezipatra (Prague, Brno)

Nominations

Best Direction in a Short Drama, Leo Awards (Vancouver, BC)
Best Cinematography in a Short Drama, Leo Awards (Vancouver, BC)
Best Male Performance in a Short Drama, Leo Awards (Vancouver, BC)
Best Musical Score in a Short Drama, Leo Awards (Vancouver, BC)
Best Production Design in a Short Drama, Leo Awards (Vancouver, BC)
Best Makeup in a Short Drama, Leo Awards (Vancouver, BC)
Best Direction, Golden Sheaf Awards (Yorkton, SK)