“I like to start in utter fear and then go into utter fantasy… and the third part is basically what needs to be done. What needs to be done wins every day,” says Deepa Shridhar. She’s head chef and owner of Anjore, a small pop-up restaurant in Austin, Texas. Anjore Austin, the short film with Shridhar as its centerpiece, won 2nd place in GoDaddy’s Small Business Stories Video Contest.
Each of GoDaddy’s ten small business finalists share this kind of grit and determination, whether veterans like Lynn and Greg Schweigert, owners of The Paint Mart, or Ron Hale of Cheapskates or the freshest of businesses, like The ManeStream, a 2-month-old clothing company started by a high school student.
The Paint Mart, which took 3rd place, was made by the Schweigerts’ son-in-law, Ryan Spencer. “When I saw that the Audience Awards had partnered with GoDaddy and the contest’s focus was a small business I was so excited to share their story! The Paint Mart to me is an amazing, humble example that with hard work and integrity anything is possible!” says Spencer. We think that was exactly the point.
Mustapha Mouflih, the subject of 1st place winner Heart and Soul, is the head chef and owner of Anima e Cuore, a very small neighborhood restaurant in London: His shop seats only 25. Mouflih, oozing heart and soul himself, says, “At the end of the evening, when you finish the service, you make happy 25 people.” The filmmaker who turned his camera toward the “frenetic, engaging personality,” is Ben Garfield. He worked hard to emulate on film the passion with which Mouflih operates. “The dishes are devised from scratch each day,” Garfield says. “It was important for me that the film should aim to capture this artisan spirit. Having experimented with a few approaches, I realized that the editing worked best when it synchronised with the rhythm of his speech, with short flashes of the location, the decor and the dishes, to try to mimic the bursts of creative inspiration which drive his process.” While GoDaddy’s contest didn’t focus on the quality of filmmaking, Heart and Soul is the perfect example of the power of a filmmaker to show the story in a way no one else can.
Audience Awards could not be more proud to have partnered with GoDaddy in this Small Business Stories video contest. Audience Awards’ filmmakers showed up like they do every time. As GoDaddy’s Chris Carfi says, “The video stories that were submitted as part of this contest exceeded even our highest expectations for quality and storytelling.” What rose to the top, garnering hundreds of comments and thousands of shares, were those small business stories that captured the fear and doubt of starting a business and chasing a dream.