Fitting, isn’t it? The list of short films revolving around motorsports is, indeed, very not-long.

This isn’t by any means a comprehensive list, since there’s plenty that have flown below most people’s radar. But I’ll just highlight a few that were very prominent in one regard or another, whether it was those involved, the subject matter or potential awards consideration.

This is timely, too, given NASCAR debuting its short film Die-Cast Mania on its YouTube page.

The Legend of Hallowdega (2010)

I already wrote about this at length a little over a year ago, but this is the only NASCAR one to make the list. It was directed by Terry Gilliam of Monty Python fame and starred David Arquette, who’s been in countless things, including the Scream franchise.

It revolves around the rumored Native American burial ground that Talladega Superspeedway was built on, which in the world of the short film leads to a paranormal-hunter expedition to the track to find out if ghosts of those long dead are causing crashes there.

Things kind of get crazy, as you’d expect them to, and it concludes with Arquette and a cameraman for the doc getting killed when a tent they’re in is landed on by Elliott Sadler‘s flipping car from 2003.

How did a crash from 2003 impact people in 2010? Gotta be that burial ground.

Dale Earnhardt Jr., of course, ran a paint scheme promoting the short at Talladega in the fall of 2010.

Le Mans 1955 (2018)

Potentially the highest-profile short of these four, Le Mans 1955 had the chance to be nominated at the Academy Awards the following year. Presented in English and French, it chronicles the horrific crash at the ’55 running of the race and the disaster that unfolded. Pierre Levegh crashed during pit stops, and the car essentially exploded into the crowd in that area, killing 83 spectators as well as Levegh.

The short film itself deals with the moral dilemma of continuing the race, specifically within the Mercedes Silver Arrow camp — Levegh was driving one of their cars. The other car was still competitive, piloted by Stirling Moss and Juan Manuel Fangio, but their team manager Alfred Neubauer struggled to decide whether to pull that car from the race.

He eventually did, of course, and it’s decades before Mercedes ever competed in motorsports again. It’s a really well-animated short with striking visuals, particularly during the crash aftermath.

Group B (2015)

Starring Game of Thrones‘ Richard Madden, this rally-focused short revolves around a driver still attempting to overcome being involved in a crash that killed his co-driver.

The rally portions are relatively brief, but what’s in there is solidly executed. I loved seeing Michael Smiley show up, too, as he’s been in everything from Star Wars to two Cornetto Trilogy installments in Shaun of the Dead and The World’s End.

It also stars the adorable, squatty MG Metro 6R4, which earns extra points from me. That thing is fun to drive on DiRT2. I might play that after writing this.

Castello Cavalcanti (2013)

Admittedly a glorified Prada ad, it’s still directed by Wes Anderson, so that’s an automatic qualifier there.

The mind behind classics like The Royal Tenenbaums and The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou and more recent fare like The French Dispatch and Asteroid City, this has all (or almost all) of Anderson’s directorial hallmarks: shots with the focal subject in the dead center. Whip pans. Fun dialogue. Whimsical music.

Jason Schwartzman, a mainstay of Anderson films, has been in at least 10 of Wes’ productions (eight feature films and two shorts). He stars as a driver in a seemingly cross-country race who, coincidentally, crashes right in his hometown.

Schwartzman’s character starts off pissed at his misfortune, but upon figuring out his connection to the town and getting along with the locals, he decides to stay for a while rather than hitching the first bus out of there.

Very Wes-esque ending, if I’m being honest.

Feel free to add yours below. Soon, we’ll be embarking on our “living-document” series, breaking down all of the movie paint schemes to ever hit the track in NASCAR.

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