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What Really Happened Was (2023) 7.0

What Really Happened Was (2023)

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General Information

Completed On: 08 Jan, 2023

Director: Jon-Claire Lee

Duration: 21 min 24 sec

Genres: Fiction, Short

Language: English

Country: Australia

Submitted By: Jon-Claire Lee

Festival Rating 7.3
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  • Director
    Jon-Claire Lee
    Greed, Innocent Killer
  • Producer
    Jon-Claire Lee
    Greed, Innocent Killer
  • Writer
    Debbie Lamedman
  • Cinematographer
    Jon-Claire Lee
    Songs of Sappho
  • Editor
    Jon-Claire Lee
  • Film Type
    Fiction, Short
  • Genres
    Drama, Sexual abuse, Bullying
  • Runtime
    21 minutes 24 seconds
  • Completion Date
    08 Jan, 2023
  • Production Budget
  • Country of Origin
  • Country of Filming
  • Film Language
  • Shooting Format
  • Aspect Ratio
  • Film Color
  • Student Project
  • First-time Filmmaker

Mobile Filmmaker's International Festival 2023
Tel Aviv-Yafo
Best Filmmaker Award 2023

Berlin Kiez Film Festival 2024
Best Mobile Film Award 2024

Washington DC International Cinema Festival 2024
United States
Washington DC
Best Mobile Film Award 2024

Swedish Academy of Motion Picture Awards 2023
Best Mobile Film Award 2023

Luis Bunuel Memorial Awards 2023
Best Mobile Film Award 2023

FilmsOnPhone Festival 2023
United Kingdom
Best Drama Film Award 2023

Toronto International Filmmakers' Festival 2024
Best Mobile Film Award 2024

Odyssey Script and Film Festival 2024
Best Mobile Film 2024

Jaipur International Film Festival 2024
Best Mobile Film Award 2024

Director's Biography

Jon-Claire Lee (Producer/Director/Writer/Actor)
Screen Producers Australia (SPA)
Australian Directors’ Guild (ADG)
Australian Writers’ Guild (AWG)
U.S.A. Screen Actors Guild (SAG)
U.S.A. Actors Equity Association (AEA)
American Federation of TV & Radio Artists (AFTRA)
Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance (MEAA) Australia

A graduate of New York University (Bachelor of Fine Arts in Acting, and Masters of Fine Arts in Film and TV Directing), Mr. Lee arrived in Sydney from New York in 1991 and established JCL Productions Pty Ltd, a film, TV and stage production company dedicated to the making of professional quality programs for international audiences. He also serves as director of Sydney Talent Company which focuses on professional actor representation and training in the Australian and international entertainment industry. He has taught and guided STC actors who have gone on to work in the industry, including Dieter Brummer, Kate Garven and Beau Brady (Home and Away); Luke Jacobz (Host for The X Factor); Delta Goodrum (Neighbours) and many others.
Mr. Lee himself has featured in international films (Mao’s Last Dancer, Muriel’s Wedding, Nim’s Island, Turning April, 13 Gantry Row, The Exorcist III, Raise the Titanic, etc.); TV dramas (Home and Away, GP, Singapore Sling, Heartbreak High, Joh’s Jury, All Saints, Wildside, Young Lions, Sea Patrol, Mako: Island of Secrets, Reef Break, Dead Lucky, etc.)

As a stage director and writer, his works include Shattered Jade (1993 Australian National Playwrights’ Centre’s opening event for its National Writer’s Week, & 2001 Sydney Carnivale Festival’s main theatrical event), Blood on My Blade (epic martial arts drama presented by Sydney Playhouse), We, In Australia (Australian Asian musical premiered at the Powerhouse Museum Theatre Sydney), Swept Under the Carpet (Australian drama premiered at NIDA Playhouse Sydney). He has also served as Artistic Director/Producer/Coordinator for numerous theatrical and festival events in Sydney, including the International Festival of Nations (Darling Harbour), the Asian Photographic Exhibition/Competition (Sydney Town Hall), the World’s Best Young Violinist Concert (Sydney Town Hall), China’s Top Young Musicians Concert (Sydney Opera House), Song of the Dragon (Darling Harbour), The “Forbidden City Collection” Fashion Show (Sydney Town Hall), Passions of the Heart (Short Play Festival at NIDA Parade Studios), Celebration of Australian Asian Artists’ Festival (40 events throughout Sydney), Cloud Gate Dance Theatre (Sydney 2000 Olympic Arts Festival).

As a film director, Mr. Lee has produced and directed two recent feature films: Innocent Killer (2017) and Greed (2019), which have gone on to do well at international festival
Innocent Killer (Co-Producer, Director, Co-Writer)
* Best Feature Film Award - NEZ Intl Film Festival 2017 (India)
* Best Feature Film Award - Intl Film Entertainment Festival Australia 2017
* Best Feature Film Award - Mediterranean Film Festival Cannes 2017 (France)
* Best Director of a Feature Film Award - Mediterranean Film Festival Cannes 2017 (France)
* Official Selection - Calcutta International Cult Film Festival 2017 (India)
* Best Drama Feature Film Award - Toronto Intl. Nollywood Film Festival 2018 (Canada)
* Official Selection - Australian Academy Cinema Television Arts (AACTA) Awards 2018
* Official Selection - London International Filmmaker Festival 2018 (UK)
* Official Selection - Depth of Field International Film Festival 2019 (USA)
* Official Selection – Great Lakes Best in Film International Film Festival 2019 (USA)
* Winner Award of Merit – Accolade Global Film Competition 2019 (USA)
* Official Selection - World Independent Cinema Awards 2021

Greed (Co-Producer & Director)
* Best Director Award - Intl Film Entertainment Festival Australia 2019
* Best Actor Award - Intl Film Entertainment Festival Australia 2019
* 2nd Place - Mediterranean Film Festival Cannes 2019 (France)
* Official Selection – New Indie Film Festival of London 2020 (NIFF London)
* Official Selection - Jaipur International Film Festival 2020 (India)
* Infinite Vistas Award (Top Prize) - NEZ International Film Festival 2020 (India)
* Grand Jury Award (Best Feature Film) – American Filmatic Arts Awards 2020
* Best Producers in Feature Film Award – American Filmatic Arts Awards 2020
* Best Feature Film – Barcelona International Film Festival 2021 (Spain)

Some of the artistic awards Mr. Lee has received include the following: the Australian Napoleon Award 1993 for “Arts and Entertainment”; the 1994 NSW Ethnic Affairs Commission Australian Human Rights Songwriting Award for Best Song to the musical piece “Passage,” the 1994 Junior Chamber of Commerce International award for being one of the “Ten Most Outstanding Young People (Overseas Chinese Division)” of the Year.”

Contact info:
Jon-Claire Lee
+61 404 232 888
[email protected]

Director's Statement

"What Really Happened Was" is a snapshot of what is going on in the minds of five teenage best friends as they struggle through the aftermath of an alleged rape case within their very tight-knit circle. A romance is shattered, trust is betrayed and, most tragically, a young woman's life will never be the same again. Each must make a decision on how to move on. This is their story, as each decides "what really happened was..."


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