ShortList 2017: ‘No Other Way to Say It’ Delivers a Voiceover Nightmare (Video)

Posted by on Aug 9, 2017 in Voice-Over | 0 comments

Writer-director Tim Mason’s seven-minute short “No Other Way to Say It” started out as something he could make quickly in a familiar location, and ended up changing his career.

The comedic film, one of 12 finalists in TheWrap’s ShortList Film Festival is set in a studio where a harried voiceover artist is trying to record an ice cream commercial. She gets conflicting and baffling notes from the client (“Let’s try this batch with confident ambivalence!”) while also receiving confusing and alarming texts from her mother.

“I was looking to make a short film for my commercial reel, and the production company I work with has that location,” said Mason, who lives in Chicago and has been a Second City performer as well as an actor, writer, director and voiceover artist for close to 15 years.

“I wrote the film for that location, and it’s definitely a world I’m familiar with. I have been everybody in that film other than the guys running the soundboard. I’ve directed commercials and run a few voiceover things, and I’ve been a VO talent and definitely had my share of untraditional and confusing direction coming from clients.”

The B story, he said, was based on his own mother’s trouble with texting, and the trickiest part was to keep everything balanced: “We had to find the right mix of when to be in the booth, and when to be out on the couch with those guys [the clients], when to look at the phone… When I watch it now, I realize how good my editor Mike Berg’s timing is. We have a lot of different balls going on, and he keeps them all up in the air.”

“No Other Way to Say It” won the narrative grand jury prize at this year’s Slamdance Film Festival. In its aftermath, Mason said he landed representation in Los Angeles, and is now “pursuing writing and directing jobs and taking meetings” in L.A. “This little film has changed a lot of the trajectory of what I’m doing,” he said.

One additional bonus: It’s made his life easier when he does voiceover work.

“The short got passed around the advertising community,” he said. “And now when I do a voiceover session, people are afraid to give me notes.”

Watch the film above. Viewers can also screen the films at any time during the festival at Shortlistfilmfestival.com and vote from Aug. 8-22.

The Scene at ShortList 2016: TheWrap’s 5th Annual Short Film Festival (Photos)


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    TheWrap’s Sharon Waxman and Steve Pond join the finalists at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival on Wedenesday night at YouTube Space LA.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    “Maman(s)” director Maïmouna Doucouré accepts the Imax Jury Prize at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    “Slingshot” director David Hansen accepts the Audience Prize at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    “Thunder Road” director Jim Cummings accepts the Creators League Prize at the fith annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    Finalists on stage at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony
    Ted Soqui

  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    Finalist filmmakers mingle at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    “Glove” directors Alexa Lim Haas and Bernardo Britto at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    The crowd at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    “Thunder Road” director Jim Cummings and PepsiCo’s Ally Polly at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    The crowd at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    “The Send-Off” directors Ivete Lucas and Patrick Bresnan talk budgets at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    Director Jörn Threlfall,  jury member Jennifer Levine, Sharon Waxman and director Maïmouna Doucouré at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    “These C*cksucking Tears” director Dan Taberski speaks at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    The crowd at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    “Boxeadora” director Meg Smaker speaks on stage at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony
    Ted Soqui

  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    TheWrap’s Sharon Waxman and “Over” director Jörn Threlfall at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    “Honest Trailers” creator Andy Signore at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival, who presented the Audience Prize

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    The crowd at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    The crowd at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    “Killer” director Matt Kazman at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    The crowd at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    “Glove” directors Alexa Lim Haas and Bernardo Britto at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    Finalist filmmakers mingle at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    “Maman(s)” director Maïmouna Doucouré speaks on stage at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    TheWrap’s Sharon Waxman opens the awards ceremony at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    Finalists on stage at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    Finalists on stage at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • Ted Soqui maimoune doucoure

    “Maman(s)” director Maïmouna Doucouré on stage at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    Finalists on stage at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    Finalists on stage at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    Finalists on stage at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    “Thunder Road” director Jim Cummings on stage at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    Directors Maïmouna Doucouré and Dan Taberski at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    Jury member Jennifer Levine at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    “Slingshot” director David Hansen at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    “Boxeadora” director Meg Smaker at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    “These C*cksucking Tears” director Dan Taberski at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    “Maman(s)” director Maïmouna Doucouré at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    Jury member Kevin Iwashina at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    “The Send-Off” directors Ivete Lucas and Patrick Bresnan at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    PepsiCo’s Ally Polly at the 5th Annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    TheWrap’s Sharon Waxman at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    The crowd at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    PepsiCo’s Ally Polly on stage at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    The crowd at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony
    Ted Soqui

  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    The crowd at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    The crowd at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    “Slingshot” director David Hansen at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    The crowd at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui


  • TheWrap's 5th Annual Shortlist Film Festival Awards Ceremony

    The crowd at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival.

    Ted Soqui



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TheWrap honored the best shorts from around the world at YouTube Space LA

TheWrap’s Sharon Waxman and Steve Pond join the finalists at the fifth annual ShortList Film Festival on Wedenesday night at YouTube Space LA.

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