Columbia Filmmakers Represent at PÖFF - Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival

Aisha Amin
November 30, 2022

Three films by Columbia filmmakers screened at the Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival (also known as PÖFF – Pimedate Ööde FilmiFestival), which ran from November 11-23, 2022. The Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival has grown into one of the biggest film festivals in Northern Europe and takes place in person in Tallinn, Estonia. The festival also claims the busiest regional industry platforms, hosting more than 1,000 guests and industry delegates, and over 160 journalists. Close to 250 features and more than 300 shorts and animations are screened during the course of the festival, and attendance reaches nearly 80,000 people annually.

The following three films from Columbia artists had the honor of screening at the festival in the PÖFF Shorts Live Action section.

The Fuse

Written and directed by Kevin Haefelin ‘21

Cassius, a worn-down Hispanic gladiator of modern life, fights to make a living as a nighttime garbage man in the concrete arena of the Bronx. One night, he’s laid off and faces his fear of becoming homeless and a pariah. On his own terms, he sets up his final farewell, but must wander through the night in quest of his truth.

Kevin Haefelin is a Swiss filmmaker based in New York. His latest short film, Trumpet, has been shortlisted for the 2020 BAFTA Student Film Awards. Chosen as a script reader for the 2020 Sundance Institute's Screenwriters Lab, Haefelin is now writing his first feature film.

The Berry Pickers 

Written and directed by Agnes Karlsson '22

During an exceptionally hot summer in Sweden, a Thai migrant worker must navigate the forest and his increasingly quarrelsome relationship with his older brother in order to find the blueberries needed to afford passage home.

Agnes Skonare Karlsson is an LA based writer/director born in Stockholm, recently graduated from Columbia University with Honors as an MFA Screenwriting graduate. Agnes’ work is rooted in character-driven stories that live in the world of social realism, often focused on characters trapped in claustrophobic situations.


Written and directed  by Rodney Llaverias ‘20 

Dolores, a robust and disconnected woman relegated to the care-taking of her crazed and ailing mother, is suddenly usurped from her usual life when a wounded dog falls from the sky onto the rooftop of her home. Through this newfound friendship, Dolores finds a way out of her monotony and embraces her wild side.

Rodney Llaverías is a Dominican-American filmmaker with a graduate degree in Screenwriting & Directing from Columbia University. His shorts have screened in Rotterdam, New Orleans Film Festival, Miami Film Festival, Max Ophüls Preis Film Festival, Outfest, and the Guadalajara International Film Festival. Rodney received the Katharina Otto-Bernstein production grant for his short film, Tropicalía.