Although it didn't ultimately take home the Best Picture Oscar last weekend, writer-director Damien Chazelle's Whiplash is widely regarded as one of the best movies of 2014. J.K. Simmons ended up taking home the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor for his portrayal of the brutal music professor Fletcher, but before that, he played the same role in Damien Chazelle's short film, also entitled Whiplash. The short ended up winning the Short Film Jury Prize at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival, which lead to the feature film getting produced, and today we have the full short online.
Damien Chazelle's Whiplash screenplay landed on The Black List in 2012, a list of the most popular unproduced screenplays in Hollywood. Since he had never directed a film before, the writer picked a lengthy scene from his script and directed it himself, bringing on J.K. Simmons to play Fletcher and Johnny Simmons (21 Jump Street) to play young drummer Andrew Neiman. After the short won the Sundance Short Jury Prize, several producers wanted to cast a different actor as Fletcher for the feature-length version, although Damien Chazelle ended up bringing J.K. Simmons back for what would be his Oscar-winning role.
The short film ended up causing a bit of controversy itself, since it was the reason why Damien Chazelle's screenplay was nominated for Best Adapted Screenplay, and not Best Original Screenplay. Although the short film was literally a scene taken from the already-written full-length Whiplash screenplay, the Academy put it in the Adapted Screenplay category. At any rate, take a look at the full short film below, along with a clip from this same sequence from the Whiplash feature film, starring Miles Teller as Andrew.