Just The Facts
Friday at 7:30 p.m. the 13th annual BGSU Film and Media Festival gets underway at the Gish Theater.
Friday night: Showcase of stand-up comedians and judges will take questions from the audience after a screening of their work.
Saturday: Student film exhibition, student work will be screened in two blocks, the first from 3-6 p.m. and the second from 7-11 p.m.
Sunday night: 7:30 p.m. The awards ceremony (has been moved from the Union theater to the Gish)
A night of stand-up comedy, student film and awards are in store this weekend as the 13th annual BGSU Film and Media Festival gets underway. The event is dually hosted by BG Reel and the University Film Organization.
Quinn George, University Film Organization president and senior, said he hopes the festival will do two things.
“I hope that it brings attention to the high quality of work being created by BGSU students,” George said. “And that student’s work will be recognized and rewarded amongst their peers.”
George discussed why they have decided to show some of the judges’ work to start the festival.
“It will help the participants know who they are being judged by so they have a point of reference,” George said. “We brought in an alumnus, Matt Smith, as one of the judges to show the work that BG film graduates have been able to accomplish outside of college.”
Jordan Salkil is the other judge, and he is a local film-maker who runs Eye Open Pictures.
More than 30 student films will be shown on Saturday, the number was difficult to come to, George said. Last year there were only 30 submissions, but this year submissions included 50 films, and it was difficult to cut a lot of them, George said.
As president, George has had a lot on his plate the last month. He aided in selecting the student films and making sure all are “up to par,” secured the judges and locations, tracked down prizes and awards and basically took care of any of the organizational minutia that goes into an event of this size.
“It has been quite stressful,” George said. “This is the second year I have helped organize the festival, and I would not have been able to do it without all the help of the UFO officers. They have been a huge help.”
George discussed why the festival is so important to the film community and the campus in general.
“We want to have a big blowout event for all the film students at the end of the year,” George said. “So they can see other work that has been going on outside their circle of friends and can have their work recognized.”
Ethan Roberts is the treasurer of UFO and is on the planning board for the Film and Media Festival. He also discussed the festival and its significance.
“Any university with a film production program needs a venue for students to showcase their work,” Roberts said. “There is an important tradition of viewing film.”
This year the Festival opened up for students all over Ohio to submit their work, and while it was only University students who submitted work this year, Roberts explained why they decided to make it available to everyone.
“We are hoping to increase our size and name brand,” Roberts said. “That way, winning the festival will have more weight and create as much diversity as possible.”
Not all of the students who submitted films are film majors, and Roberts said anyone interested in media production, including telecommunications, visual communication technology and broadcast, should get involved with the festival.
Richard Sanders, a sophomore film student, submitted two films, but neither was accepted into the festival.
“It is a very strong year for the media festival,” Sanders said. “There were strong submissions in the drama and comedy category and overall a very competitive year.”
While Sanders did not have any films accepted, he is hopeful for the future.
“You learn better for the following year, and it allows you to work on your craft more,” Sanders said. “Not getting in was disappointing, but hopefully I‘ll be there next year. It is a great opportunity to grow as a film-maker.”
Sanders said he is really looking forward to two films; “Funeral Procession” by Courtney Hutton and “Razorblades” by BG Reel.
“[Razorblades] looks to be a pretty killer film,” he said.
Cynthia Baron, an associate professor in the film department, has seen the progression of the festival.
“It’s a neat process to see the evolution because I’ve seen all thirteen years of the festival,” Baron said. “It is part of a continuing tradition and builds on past ones.”