UNCSA School of Filmmaking showcases student’s ‘Best of 2018-’19’
On Friday, the School of Filmmaking at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts (UNCSA) will open its doors to the public to attend its annual “Best of 2018-’19 Screening” event. It’s a chance to experience and enjoy the work of these talented young filmmakers – and it’s free of charge.
Topping the 90-minute program is Interstate 8, the third film produced in collaboration with Film University Babelsberg Konrad Wolf, which was filmed locally and completed last April. The story follows two women who meet by chance in a police car and, without a word spoken, come to realize that injustice looms before them.
In 2017, a multi-year exchange program was instituted between students from Berlin, who came to Winston-Salem that February, followed by UNCSA students who traveled to Germany that May. This unique collaboration became the subject of Berlin and Back, a documentary made by students at the School of Filmmaking that aired on UNC-TV in January 2018.
Two class project films – director/cinematographer Reagan Frazier’s experimental narrative Heaven’s Hue, and director/co-cinematographer Mateo Davis’s How to Never Stop Being Sad, an interpretive dance music video and a final class project for fourth-year cinematography students – were produced on 35mm film instead of digital equipment.
In the 21st century, digital filmmaking has become the norm in the industry; one reason being that film stock is more expensive. Nevertheless, the School of Filmmaking does provide that option.
“I don’t think many schools give the students the opportunity to shoot on film,” said Thomas Ackerman, professor of cinematography at UNCSA. “Depth and breadth of the curriculum is one of the hallmarks of a conservatory education. We’re proud to offer that to our students.”
Other films scheduled to be screened include director Grant Godbee’s Daughters, a fourth-year student film about a pregnant teenager coming to terms with her condition while trying to reconcile with her wayward mother; Do You Remember, an animated third-year film written, directed, and animated by Christi Neptune, Ryan Mulder, and Scott Rodeheaver; Haunted, an animated first-year student film that puts a spin on traditional ghost stories from writer/director/animator/co-editor Mckayla Singleton; writer/director Brian Storck’s High Stakes, a second-year student film that sends up the vampire genre; writer/director Connor Ryan’s Lonely Flowers, a second-year film about the effects of divorce on a young woman; director Jeff Yabrow’s Loser, a fourth-year drama about a woman struggling to make ends meet; director Michelle DeGrace’s fourth-year film Painted Love, in which a disillusioned debt collector discovers a portal to a magical world; and director Joey Moore’s third-year film The Big L, in which a young girl becomes her own superhero to fend off bullies.
“In the School of Filmmaking, we encourage our students to experience the full range of opportunities made possible by their conservatory education,” said Henry Grillo, interim dean of the School of Filmmaking. “The experimental films and the Berlin exchange film are two examples of how we are empowering our students, and we’re excited to share them with our community of film lovers and supporters, alongside some of our best animated and narrative films from the previous year.”
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The UNCSA School of Filmmaking’s “Best of 2018-’19 Screening” will take place at 7 p.m. Friday in the Main Theatre of the ACE Exhibition Complex, located on the UNCSA campus, 1533 S. Main St., Winston-Salem. Admission is free. For more information, visit the official UNCSA website, https://www.uncsa.edu/.