Monday, February 8, 2010

Collaborative Cinema: Filmmakers Workshop

// By Anna Krutzik //

This past Saturday February 6th a group of talented local film professionals got together at RDI Stages to give a crash course in film making to 35 Wisconsin high school students. The event was presented by Milwaukee Film as part of its Collaborative Cinema program, a unique education program that provides high school students the chance to experience all aspects of film, from scriptwriting to working on an actual film set. The event was free for students and made possible by the incredible generosity of the film professionals who donated their time, equipment, and knowledge. The Collaborative Cinema program is generously funded by the Richard and Ethel Herzfeld Foundation.

During the Filmmakers Workshop students rotated to different stations to learn about the art department, camera, and production and shadowed crew members as they shot a scene from the animated Pixar film Up, using live actors (including Collaborative Cinema's project director Mark Metcalf) instead of computer generated ones. Carlo Besasie (amazing local filmmaker and creator of the 2009 Milwaukee Film Festival sponsor and commercial trailers) directed the scene along with AboutFace Media's Ryan Dembroski as the assistant director. Local production companies like Independent Edit, North American Camera, and Blue Moon Lighting also helped out in filming the scene. DocUWM was on hand to document the excitement. All in all, it was a great example of the local film community coming out and supporting the future filmmakers. It was amazing to see the students' eagerness to learn. And kudos to all the film industry professionals. You guys make great teachers!

Of the 35 student participants, 5 will be chosen to work as interns during the film shoot this summer as Collaborative Cinema turns the winning script from its high school screenplay competition into a short film that will premier at the 2010 Milwaukee Film Festival. But first, the Collaborative Cinema mentors must chose the top 15 scripts to move on in the competition and attend the second writing workshop to be held February 27 at Discovery World.

Good luck to all the participants in the program and thanks to those who made Saturday such a great success!

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