Ronald Guttman (THE HUNT FOR RED OCTOBER) plays a retired physics professor with his eyes set on a job at CERN–but with an all-consuming passion for ping-pong–in Zack Schamberg’s short HARDBAT. Guttman’s character makes his own spongy paddles, and practices ping-pong with a trainer in his garage. He is so attuned to aerodynamics of the ball moving through the air that when he is challenged to a game outdoors he balks at the impact of external factors.

HARDBAT was made with Sloan funding when Schamberg was in NYU’s graduate film program. This 12-minute comedy is premiering on Sloan Science & Film and will be available in future versions of the Teacher’s Guide making these films available to students and teachers.

The film is written and directed by Zack Schamberg, produced by Charlotte Rabate, and filmed by Ben Rutkowski. Other Sloan-supported filmmakers Bella Wing-Davey (THE RAIN COLLECTOR) and Shawn Snyder (TO DUST) also worked on the film.

HARDBAT played at the Hamptons, Woodstock, and Indy film festivals in 2015. It won the Audience Award at the Northside Film Festival in Brooklyn.