There are many quotes about how the youth of today is our future tomorrow, and yet as adults we have a habit of dismissing what the youth have to say. The Youth In Action Short Film Festival (YIASFF) is designed to give today’s youth a voice. This is an organization and film festival that m & s Marshall productions co-owner and 12 Disciples co-founder Matthew Marshall supports and encourages.


“I think this festival is an outstanding outlet for Youth to express themselves through film,” Marshall says. Marshall has grown up with a love for film and has dedicated his life to making films and dramatic productions to share with the world. Marshall has won a number of awards for his past work, but no so as much as recently where his feature film Daughter of the King won 28 awards and had 15 Official Selections, 3 Nominations and an Official Finalist at Film Festivals around the world. As he finishes post production on his newest short Tuned In through 12 Disciples he hopes to go back to the festival circuit and have more success.


Marshall felt privileged to joined the judging panel of the YIASFF and to give back to the next generation of film makers and to a festival that is dedicated to recognizing and awarding the future film makers of the world.


Film today is a powerful tool that can be used to inform, inspire, and hopefully ignite change. During the YIASFF the students are given an opportunity to use film to tell a story that can bring forth awareness of complex issues (ranging from social, environmental, economical, and more) along with highlighting possible solutions. Film is powerful because it gives the audience a visual understanding of how these issues effect the lives of individuals, families and communities; despite maybe never experiencing them for ourselves.


YIASFF is a film festival for students of elementary and secondary schools. It is designed to give youth a voice about today’s issues. This year had some outstanding films.  Two out standing films were; A message in a bottle and The Candy Girl.  The theme of A Message in a Bottle was one that Marshall related to with the theme being child marriage and child trafficking. A topic close to Marshall’s heart with human trafficking being the feature theme in his Daughter of the King. A message in a Bottle took two awards including the top prize.  The other outstanding film The Candy girl took the festival winning four awards and created a buzz amounst people involved with the festival including winning the People’s choice Award.  It’s fun loving topic of trafficking candy in a school where candy has become forbidden had a serious tone of parallel to drugs.  Followed by an honourable mention would go to Home (Done by the makers of “The Candy Girl” as well.  Home took “home” two awards. These three films cleaned up the awards at the festival. Included below are the winners of the festival


Best in Festival. A Message in a Bottle.

People’s Choice Award to ‘The Candy Girl’

Best Director award to Joshua Costea for ‘The Candy Girl’.

Best Actress award to Maia Costea for her role of Amanda in ‘The Candy Girl’.

Best Supporting Actor award to Matt Kennedy for his role of Principle/Mr.Shultz in ‘Candy Girl’.

Best Film Editing award to Home

Best Sound award to Home.

Best Cinematography to A Memory in a Bottle

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