Watch 8 New Shorts from Vimeo Staff Picked Filmmakers


Stories in Place is a new COVID-19 spurned series from Vimeo, and it’s bloody brilliant.

With so many people in the creative industries taking a hit this year, Vimeo decided to pay the love forward by selecting eight Staff Picked filmmakers, and asking them to make a short film remotely about a local business they love. All the films featured in Stories in Place were concepted, shot and edited in just 12 days, with $5K going towards the filmmakers and $5K towards their subject of choice.

Each film featured on Stories in Place focuses on small business owners who are changing it up to weather the coronavirus shit-storm, and the stories are as different as they are great—there’s surf filmmaker Morgan Maassen’s film about his sea urchin-diving dad, a Taiwanese restaurant who are feeding NYC’s overworked healthcare workers, and a dance studio whose entire business now lives on Zoom.

Check out all the films below.

Stories in Place: Jeff Maassen

You already know Morgan Maassen from his cinematic surf flicks, but have you met his dad, Jeff? Jeff Maassen had been diving for sea urchins for the past 40 years until Covid-19 brought his business to a grinding halt. Morgan hung out with his dad above and below the ocean’s surface to find out more.

Stories in Place: 886

Faced with closures, this NYC Taiwanese restaurant reached out to the internet for donations so that they could deliver bento boxes to healthcare workers and in doing so, keep their staff employed. A short film from Law Chen that highlights the resilience of New Yorkers in the most challenging of times.

Stories in Place: Coco’s Variety

This high energy animated film from Ornana (Danny Madden) documents how Coco’s Variety, a Los Angeles bike shop, continues to serve its customers and provide essential services.

Stories In Place: Afrocontigbo

Korma Aguh-Stuckmayer was faced with so many cancelled work events in her diary, she decided to lock it away in a cupboard. But, not one for sitting around, Korma decided to take her dance studio online, as seen in this short from Rachel Knoll, and discovered a community from around the world ready to come together and dance in their living rooms.

Stories In Place: The Virtual Salon

By the sheer volume of bad haircuts coming out of this isolation period, the world could do with a few more people like Darryl Watts. With his salon closed for business, barber Darryl now goes virtual with remote hairstyling in this film from Jesse Atlas, recreating the magic of his shop online.

Stories In Place: June Jung Art Tattoo Studio

In this era of social distancing, what does it mean when your art form and small business require human touch? This short film from Yoko Okumura documents how Jung Jung Art, a tattoo shop in Highland Park, CA, are changing it up.

Stories In Place: Desert Island Comics

Inspired by Desert Island Comics, the iconic Brooklyn shop now indefinitely closed, this cut paper animation from Case Jernigan speaks to the connective power of comic books.

Stories In Place: Plante.

Plante. is a slow lifestyle plant shop in the heart of Budapest that was forced to think beyond their physical store. Filmmaker Réka Bucsi captures this moment of transition through animated flora.

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