Archive for the 'film-festival' Category
One of my former 7th grade English students, Nic Weinfeld, created this cool recap video using footage he shot during our recent film festival. Nic will be a senior in high school this year at the acclaimed Interlochen Arts Academy High School in Michigan. Nic left one of our local high schools to go to school at Interlochen so he could study film. I think Nic was able to capture the excitement and energy from our film festival in this 60-second recap video. Great job Nic. Thanks!
Our third annual film festival was almost two weeks ago and I’m finally getting around to writing about it. The podcast above was created by Bob Madigan from the radio station WTOP, 103.5 FM. It was nice of Mr. Madigan to take the time to come check out our film festival this year. Thanks Mr. Madigan!
Once again, we filled up the 400-seat theatre at the American Film Institute. It’s a real honor to be able to screen our middle school films in such an amazing movie house. We showed documentaries, silent films, a collection of short scenes, a few animations, and some of the short movies students created. The festival could have been twice as long.
The one comment I hear each year from people who attend the festival is how surprised they are at the quality of the work. This year was no different. The students were glowing with satisfaction from having their films played on the big screen. We also were able to raise over $1,700 for our annual fundraiser. After we donate $500 to AFI, we still have plenty of money left over for more crazy projects next year.
Here’s one of the many films that made a big impression at our film festival this year, Can’t Let You Go:
Check out our website, Watch Out!, to see more of the films from this year. Thanks to all the students, parents, and other school staff members who helped make our third annual film festival a success. It’s a TON of work organizing this film festival each year, but it’s definitely worth it.
We’re almost ready for our 3rd annual film festival coming up this Tuesday at AFI. We’re screening close to two full hours of student-created films from the school year. Here’s our to-do list for Monday:
- create the $500 presentation check to AFI
- create concession sales posters
- finalize student helper lists
- contact all parent volunteers
- complete the film festival program and print them all (how many?)
- create small “Please Donate” signs for our donation jars
That’s all I can think of for now.
A few of my 7th grade students created this remix of the classic scene from A Few Good Men last week. We’re going to use this clip as part of the introduction for our 3rd annual film festival coming up on June 7th. We were brainstorming possible famous scenes to remix when someone came up with this one. We quickly youtubed it (is that a word?) and thought immediately that it would work for our remix purposes. It actually only took them about an hour and a half to pull this off. I was pretty impressed.
We’re having our film festival at the American Film Institute Silver Theatre and Cultural Center again this year. We just about filled up the large 400-seat theatre last year with students, parents, friends and other invited guests from the community.
Hopefully, we’ll fill it up again this year. The festival is about a week away and we still have quite a bit of work left to do to get ready.
Last week, our school community came out to watch two and a half hours of films created by my 6th, 7th, and 8th graders. We packed the theatre with close to 400 people for our 2nd annual film festival. I love teaching this film literacy class because we get to show off what middle school students are truly capable of. The one comment I heard over and over again from parents was how impressed they were with the quality of the student films, and how well-developed and engaging the plots were.
My students put a lot of work and time into carefully planning their stories and writing their scripts. It took almost four months to create these films. It’s demanding to ask middle school students to stay with a project for that long. Creating a short film with a clear, well-developed plot is a tough process. All the students who completed their films should be extremely proud.
We also surpassed our fund-raising goal. We raised over $1,800 dollars this year through donations and concession sales. After we donated $500 to the American Film Institute, we have $1,300 left over to buy new equipment for next year. Here’s one of the films shown at the festival, Clone for Life:
To see more student films check out our class website, Watch Out! Over the next week we will be posting all the student films created in the last four months. Thanks to everyone who volunteered to help out and make our 2nd annual film festival a success. Let’s do it again next year!
Can middle school students create interesting, engaging, well-made short films? Can they have their very own film festival at an actual movie theatre and invite 300 plus people from the community to attend? Is this possible? Of course it is!
We are just about done putting our film festival together. We remixed this old black and white film noir movie from 1949, D.O.A. This short video is part of the introduction for our upcoming film festival. I downloaded the film from the Internet Archives website. The film is licensed No Rights Reserved under Creative Commons. No Rights Reserved means you are free to do whatever you want with the video. You can download it, slice it up, overdub voiceovers, and post the finished product online.
If anyone doubts whether middle school students are capable of creating compelling, interesting short films, stay tuned. We will be posting all the films on our class website next week after our film festival.
Longfellow Ten veteran, VHD, recently completed this cell phone PSA for our upcoming film festival. I wasn’t sure he could actually top last year’s cell phone PSA, but he managed to do so. This is just one of many short pieces we are putting together for our film festival. We have a TON of work left to do in the next four weeks. Students are filming Act III of their movies next week. They have been working on these short films for about three months now.
It’s challenging to create short, concise 6 to 8 minute films. Everyone has been doing a great job and I can’t wait to see all the films on the big screen. I think we’re all feeling the pressure at the moment. It’s a bit stressful, but it’s also a lot of fun.
I’ve been so busy with end of the year stuff that I haven’t had a chance to blog about our film festival we had two weeks ago at the AFI theatre. Over 200 people showed up to watch the films my 6th and 7th grade film literacy students have created this year. It was a very exciting event for all of us. Marilyn Horowitz, the author of the screenwriting book we use in class, came all the way from New York City to attend!
This was truly a community event. My students, their parents and families, other teachers and school administration all came together to help make our first annual film festival a huge success. We were able to raise over $1200 through donations. We donated $500 to AFI (see large check above), and will spend the other $700 on new equipment for our program next year. (like more Blue Snowball mics!)
To watch some of the films featured in our film festival please visit our website, Watch Out! I hope we are fortunate enough to have another film festival next year.
Photos by Dan Gross. Used with permission.
My students and I have been working overtime in preparation for our upcoming film-festival at a local movie theater. The 30-second cell phone video shown here was created this week by VHD, of LF10. It’s part of a series of short videos we’re creating to use in the film-festival.
We’re also creating an original three-minute introduction, and a short documentary about making movies in middle school. We have two weeks left to wrap it all up!