Mode Project wins at 2nd Annual Chicago Food Film Festival

The Doughnut Vault has won the "Best Super Short" Film Award at the Second Annual Chicago Food Film Festival. The film, which documents the sights and sounds of Chicago boutique doughnut seller The Doughnut Vault, premiered in front of a sold-out crowd at Intelligentsia Roasting Works on Chicago's near west side on November 19th. Guests enjoyed fresh Doughnut Vault doughnuts while the film was playing in what the festival terms "a multi-sensory full-bodied experience." The weekend-long festival attracted foodies and film enthusiasts alike and guests were invited to "taste what you see on the screen."

Mode Project director/editor Brooks Ruyle became interested in the tiny cash-only doughnut shop after he noticed they were sold-out within an hour every morning. "As film makers, we're always looking for stories which can be artfully told," said Ruyle. "After seeing the festival's call for entries we knew The Doughnut Vault would be a perfect subject." In order to become embedded with the doughnut makers, Ruyle used a lightweight DSLR camera, taking advantage of the camera's excellent low-light capability. "Mode Project captured the essence of what we create at The Doughnut Vault in a beautiful and stylized way," according to Doughnut Vault owner Brendan Sodikoff. "I love that no one describes how the doughnuts taste in the film, yet by the end the viewer is craving what they've seen. It's a perfect invitation to sample our doughnuts."

Presented in association with The James Beard Foundation and benefiting The Good Food Project, the Food Film Festival is the brainchild of George Motz, the NYC-based documentary filmmaker behind the award-winning Hamburger America film and book, along with co-creator chef Harry Hawk. 21 films were screened in the competition and the panel of judges included Chicago Tribune writer-columnist Rick Kogan, Chef Michael Kornick of Chicago's acclaimed MK, and WTTW's Chief Operating Officer Greg Cameron. "Mode Project is proud to have played a part in making the festival a success... it was a one-of-a-kind event and we're already thinking about next year," said director Ruyle.