Short films to emulate famous directors

Written By Lauren Clouser

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The John P. Harris Society (JPH) is holding its second annual “Be the Filmmaker” festival, in which participants have 48 hours to create a short film.

Filmmakers have from 3 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 10 to 3 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 12 to complete their films, which will be screened in the JVH on Sunday at 6 p.m. Filmmakers will be competing for the title of best overall film.

According to Aurora Burgy, the president of JPH, the films will imitate the styles of various famous directors.

“Usually, in our regular Monday meetings, we kind of bounce back and forth big director names,” Burgy said. “Last year, we had Martin Scorsese, Edgar Wright and Tim Burton. Then we have teams of three, and you get 48 hours to write, shoot, direct and edit a film in the style of another director.”

Burgy said that JPH is planning to use some of the same directors that they used in the festival last year, while also introducing some new directors.

Senior screenwriting major Scott Kidwell was part of the team that won the festival last year. Their film parodied the style of director Martin Scorsese.

Kidwell attributed the victory to his teammates.

“I worked with a really good cinematographer, and the ability to bounce ideas off of everyone was a really strong point,” Kidwell said.

The team’s victory came as a surprise for Kidwell.

“Whenever you see you have 48 hours to do something, it could be pretty good or it could be not so good.,” Kidwell said.

The films are generally judged by the president of JPH, along with two other JPH board members. Occasionally a professor or an academic advisor will also judge. This year’s judges are not yet set in stone; the decision will be made closer to the time of the festival.

Kelsey Myers, vice president of JPH, is a potential judge for the festival. Myers provided some advice on what it takes for a film to win.

“Just being creative and thinking outside the box and having something that’s based off of the director and pretty close to the style, but still put in your own touch,” Myers said.

Both the festival and screening are open to students of all majors, regardless of whether or not they are in JPH, and it is not necessary to have a team assembled at the time of signing up. Students can sign up for the festival by messaging the JPH Facebook page. The deadline to sign up is Feb. 9.

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