During quarantine, Billy Kent (along with Mac Montandon) made a short film series called THE OTHER SIDE, shot entirely on Zoom chats. The series comedically examines the missed and mixed communication born of isolation and desperation. It’s about this crazy, intense, horrible, and absurd time we are all living through together. And alone. The filmmakers were inspired by the idea that at some point we will see one another on the other side of this pandemic. In the meantime, we can only see one another on the other side of the screen.
Episode 2, “Vale of Cashmere,” played at the 2020 Cannes Short Film Festival, and Episode 7, “The Disappearing Act,” was selected to screen at the Twin Cities Jewish Film Festival and the Atlanta Jewish Film Festival. Other festival appearances include Sunday Shorts, the Milan Film Festival, Lift-Off Paris, the Venice Short Film Festival, the Ann Arbor Jewish Film Festival, the Durango Film Festival, the San Francisco Indie Short Festival, the Joyce Forum Jewish Short Film Festival, and more.
Kent’s second feature film, HAIRBRAINED, (2014) starred Brendan Fraser, Alex Wolff, Parker Posey, and Julia Garner. Billy’s first feature THE OH IN OHIO (2006) starred Parker Posey, Danny DeVito, Paul Rudd, Heather Graham, and Liza Minnelli premiered at SXSW, and internationally at the Edinburgh Film Festival. Critic Wesley Morris of The Boston Globe called the film “one of the sweetest, smartest sex comedies I’ve ever seen.” Kent has been directing professionally since 1989, when his series of political satire promos for MTV helped define the network’s place in America’s cultural lexicon. He has directed over 300 commercials worldwide working with the world’s top ad agencies. Kent teaches commercial directing at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts and lives in Brooklyn.