It was great seeing you all at the festival last night. We hope you all had fun! I think it was one of our biggest turnouts (close to 200 people)! Congrats to all the winners and to the rest of the cast and crews. You all are winners in my book. Thank you to all who came out to our event. If you want to purchase a copy of the program, please visit our Shop section
for more information. Our films are up online, please visit our 2013 Spring Film Festival
for them all. Thank you again and hope to see you at our future events!Award Winners:
Best Screenplay: Daniel Lerner, Putting It Off
Best Cinematography: Andrew Tse, The Last Laugh
Best Actress: Tiffany Jen, The Last Laugh
Best Actor: Kelston Thomas, Putting It Off
Best Music: David Butterfield, It Stalks
Best Editing: Ryan Weston, Putting It Off
Best Picture: Putting It Off
Audience Choice: Putting It Off
Starting off...sorry for the long delay in posting the meeting minutes on the website.
Usually we do a quick tutorial of celtx, but this semester I figured we could try and do something different so I had the very wonderful Jessica Esteves, of Algorithm fame, head a discussion on some of the many things to keep in mind while screenwriting.
We brushed through fleshing out characters. Jessica's tip for this is to write out a short paragraph on the
character. Nothing too formal, maybe some adjectives, some descriptive declarations. Here's the
example she provided for a character description:
Moral. Leader. Athletic. Brave. Ariella Cohen is the captain of the cheerleading squad and Matt Richmond's best friend. She always tries to do the right thing despite the repercussions....
*Ariella mean "Lion of God".
And you can see that it's very short, very basic, and she even gives her characters names (something I
generally haven't gotten that used to doing. I still use scripts with characters named “dude one,” “girl,”
etc). We didn't go over this much because she implied that writing characters too fully and becoming
attached to their characteristics can cause problems in the future (issues I'll mention later).
Jessica's next, and ultimately biggest, advice of the night was to watch short films. We discussed that a
lot of people don't watch short films simply because Television and Feature Length movie formats are
more readily distributed, and for this reason when we try to make short films as a club a lot of the
pitches, scripts and/or finished products end up being too long, and it's the fault of the nature of the
story itself. Short films are a different kind of animal, and as a result the kinds of stories that are told in
this medium are different than what you might be used to.
So here are some short films Jessica recommends you watch:
The Desk: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k_kIyihNd-A
Long Distance Relationship: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aQgdxLRk6eY
To Claire From Sonny: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8rKW-VRFczA
Faeight: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WoWIJa-2U4gTune for Two: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=MYw8HjN21bk
Forever's Not So Long: http://vimeo.com/3568757
I Love You Will Smith: http://vimeo.com/30926719
Camera & Lighting:
We got a little hand on experience with both cameras we have with the club: the Canon HD Vixia HF S100 & Canon HV40. If you missed the meeting, we have a tutorial about each camera in our Tutorials Section
. If you want some real hand on experience with it, come over to our office hours
in Room 0208E at the Student Involvement Suite in Stamp Union.
Lighting is important since it can make a huge difference on the tone of the scene.
We were in the WAM lab at CSS. We found out that night all the labs on campus have upgraded their Macs, including Final Cut Pro. With the same viewpoint as other professionals in the film business, we don't have high regards to the newest version of Final Cut Pro. We advise all members to please be careful with this program. It is known to not save your project properly. Also if you are accustomed to older versions of Final Cut, it is arranged differently. We advise that everyone edit with Adobe Premiere Pro. All the Macs on campus (include the office mac) has this program.
Thanks to all who came out last night. We heard many wonderful ideas. Unfortunately we were not able to pick them all. Here are the films that were from last night group favorites:
- How to Kill Your Roommate – dark comedy – Director Jeremy Snow
Plot: 3 roommates attempt to fake a suicide despite being idiots.
Need: writer, co-director, cinematographer, producer, production assistant, editor, musician.
- Found in the Woods – horror – Director Xiang Chen
Plot: A group of students working on a horror film in the woods stumble upon an unidentifiable shadow. Soon afterwards, they are hunted by the shadow’s creature.
Need: producer, production assistant, musician
- The Fight (tentative title) – comedy/romance – Director Daniel Luu
Plot: Chris, an average college student has been hopelessly in love with a girl from high school, since he first saw her. Being shy and awkward he hasn’t had the courage to confess his feelings to her. His friends hate to see him always talking and thinking of her so they take it into their own hands and help Chris out. However, one of his friends isn’t so fond of the idea. [shot in anime style]
Need: writer, cinematographer, producer, production assistant, editor, musician, special effects editor
We also selected a number of films from our returning members. These were selected before last night's meeting. New members you may have this opportunity next semester.
- Trickeration – comedy – Directors Alex Hammer and Matt Valade
Plot: Two college students find themselves overwhelmed in the world of drug dealing. What starts out as a small project to make money turns into a whirlwind of chaos, money, and murder.
- Ravioli Midnight – spaghetti western spoof trailer –Directors Eric Fowler and Jack Trimble
Plot: Southern bandit Minnasota Red kidnaps Claire Dames, causing bandit-turned-vigilante Dodge Forty to team up with straight shooter Sam West to get her back
Need: editor, musicians
If you're interested in joining a crew for any of these, please look over the plot synopses and available positions above and then email us at email@example.com with 1) your name and contact info 2) your top 3 film choices 3) your preferred position 4) other info (experience, interests, etc) BY FRIDAY AT NOON!
Here's to a productive semester!
The following is the words from our amazing secretary: Alex Oshiro.
We had a great first meeting, almost half of you were new and the rest of you were just as, if not more,
beautiful than when we left you. Peter said some stuff, Jim said a lot of stuff, I cracked a few jokes nobody
laughed at. It was a good time for everybody. We talked, met up with people, met new people, it was awesome.
If you missed it here are the major points you need to know:
Next meeting is for pitches. If you want to pitch a short film for this semester please follow the following instructions:
If you're returning: Fill out a form (see below) with your idea and details. Then set up a meeting with an officer by emailing us at the gmail account. In that meeting you'll pitch your film, we'll hear the pitch, then you'll leave, we'll deliberate then get back to you with whether or not it's going to be accepted.
If you're new: Fill out a form (see below) with your idea and details. Next meeting you'll pitch your movie to the club. The club will hear all the pitches then vote on which ones they want to see completed. The most popular ideas will be accepted to be worked on.
If your pitch is not accepted, don't be disheartened. There are still many opportunities to work on other people's films and build your rep so that you can come back next time better than ever. Who knows, you might find an opportunity somehow to make it any way, and that would be totally rad.
The meeting after that is for elections. We'll have more information on that later because this email is getting
a little long, just know that we're having them early because half of our officer board is graduating this semester. Try not to cry for too long. For a good idea of how long you should cry, I only did it for like, 8 days and I didn't even cry once in Les Mis.
Finally some other announcements. Member Patrick O'Connor wants to put together a union of actors and actresses for our club, just so that they have a more coheisive group. You can email him for more information.
So that's everything important. If you couldn't make it this time, we missed you dearly and hope you can make it to the next meeting. If you were there and are planning to attend the next one, we're looking forward to it. If you attended this meeting, but don't plan to attend next meeting, I'm sorry, I know Jim can be pretty intimidating, but he's a real good guy once you get to know him. So yeah, here's to an interesting semester.
Our first meeting is next Tuesday, Jan. 29th at 7:00 in 3207 ASY, and we'll be doing new member pitches the following week. But those of you who are returning to the club may already know of our proposal policy - any returning member can avoid the club voting process and pitch their film directly to the officer board! If this concerns and interests you, read on...
Okay first, we define a returning member in this case as someone who has been an official member of MDFC for at least 1 semester and who has in the past participated on a short film crew or cast, worked on a production, or otherwise gotten their name out there as an active member. You do not have to have been a director, just active in some way or another. You know who you are, and if you think this applies to you, we probably agree :)
So, if you have an idea you want to pitch, here's the process: Simple email us and we'll schedule you a 15 minute block to meet with some combination of officers. That's all there is to it, but pay attention: there's a DEADLINE for pitches, which is Feb. 5th, the second meeting of the semester. Also, you MUST fill out a proposal sheet and bring it with you to our meeting. You can pitch your proposal as normal to us, using the sheet as a guide, and then we'll ask you some extra questions to make sure you're covering your bases and you're truly committed to the film.
One big thing we will ask during the meeting is if you have a cast or crew in mind - yes, an advantage of this process is that you can work with whoever you want if you choose. If you have some people you want to ask, go for it. Whatever crew spots you don't have filled by our pitch, we can ask for among the rest of our members. Jim will assign you those positions as normal. As for cast members you still need, you will get a spot in our casting call in Feb. So please, spend some time thinking of who you might like to work with; if you don't have anyone in mind, that's totally fine, it's up to you.
If we get too many pitches we will have to limit the number we accept, and in that case we will pick the ones we feel are most likely to succeed and are not too overly ambitious. Finally, keep in mind that this semester we will be more heavily enforcing a shorter time limit for your films. We aim for 5-10 minutes; if it goes over a little it's fine but we cannot have 20-25 minutes films. We simply don't have the time at the festival, and you don't really have the time during the semester.
Have a great first week of classes and we hope to see everyone next Tuesday!
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It was great seeing you all at the festival tonight. We hope you all had fun! I think it was one of our biggest turnouts (close to 200 people)! Congrats to all the winners and to the rest of the cast and crews. You all are winners in my book.Thank you to all who came out to our event. It was great seeing you all at the festival tonight. We hope you all had fun! I think it was one of our biggest turnouts (close to 200 people)! Congrats to all the winners and to the rest of the cast and crews. You all are winners in my book. If you want to purchase a copy of the program, please visit our Shop section
for more information. Our films would be put up on Youtube shortly. Thank you again and hope to see you at our future events!Award Winners:
Best Screenplay: Sarah Gizaw, Words on My Hands
Best Cinematography: Ambily Bose, Algorithm
Best Actress: Jessica Esteves, The Case of the Campus Corpse
Best Actor: Juan Pastor, Words on My Hands
Best Music: Nicholas Hung, Algorithm
Best Editing: Ryan Weston, Words on My Hands
Best Picture: Words on My Hands
Audience Choice: Words on My HandsUPDATE:
The films have been uploaded to Youtube. We apologize for the delay. Please look at our 2012 Winter Film Festival
page to see them all and more.
The following is from the words of our lovely Secretary, Alexander Oshiro.
So film fest is just around the corner. Like seriously, and if you're panicking because you don't know what to do then stop because this email is here to save the day!
So the film festival is this Friday at 6:00pm Eastern Standard Time. Doors open at 5:30 and we would like club members to get there early so that you can help out.
Dress semi-formally. Button up shirts and slacks, jackets and ties optional. This doesn't apply to ladies, and I would give you a guide on how to dress if I knew, but you guys seem pretty adept at figuring that out without my guidance (it's the guys who really need it, but what are you going to do). You understand right? If you don't, feel free to ask questions by responding to this email, or on the facebook group, or retweet everything we've ever retweeted on Twitter
until someone helps you. Or like... do whatever you'd do on Google+ ON GOOGLE+. Anyway moving on.
Invite anyone you've ever met to attend. You're proud of your movie (you are, let's admit it, you so totally are) and you should show it to everyone. You will show it to everyone. It will happen and it will be awesome. You'll be the talking point among your friends for the next until-the-end-of-time! You ready for that kind of fame commitment? Of course you are. Get to inviting, like now.
Directors, remember to remind your cast and crew to attend. Make it a thing, meet up before and roll in together. You guys are tight, you're probably already on top of this.
Tonight in the meeting, we went over music recording. We used the audacity program to help import the tracks. Audacity is a free program for both PC & Mac. Check out our Programs section
for the download link. We used an electric guitar and an amp and connected that to our laptop. Depending on the amp, it can be connected directly via usb. However it varies from amp to amp. Also since every amp varies, sometimes a loud hum is also recorded. We discussed a method to remove that hum.
Next we went over the basics of Garage Band. We discussed track importing. You can also use Garage Band for live recording. Depending what you like, some people preferred Audacity for recording. But its all on personal preference.
Also a couple of reminders, our film festival is on November 30 at 6 pm. We would not
have a meeting next week. Lastly, all films are due Wednesday, November 21 (Before Thanksgiving--Next week!). If you can't get it done then, please let us know. We hope to have some editing nights for the next couple of nights before Thanksgiving. If you're interested, please let us know. It would be great since you can ask other officers or even members for help and it would be in an editing environment.
At this week's meeting we went over sound design. Starting in Final Cut Pro we discussed how to record and synch audio in order to dub over dialogue. We then taught how to edit a final cut sequence in Soundtrack Pro and get rid of background noise and mic hum. Once audio was synched and sounded good, we used Garage Band to find royalty free sound effects, room tone, and music. All of these programs can be found at the OIT labs on campus. In case Garage Band doesn't have the sound effects you need, you can always go online to websites like freesound.org to find hundreds of royalty free sound effects and music. Many members came to hang out and begin editing their own films. We plan to go over live music at our next meeting, which would be held in our original room (3207 ASY).
For starters, hope everyone and their family are safe after Hurricane Sandy. The safety of those affected would always be in our prayers. Tonight's meeting was that we had no meeting. We all went to see the Dark Knight Rises at the Hoff Theater. Glad to see the people who came out. It was great meeting you. For next week, we would have editing part 2. It would mainly be about sound editing. However we will have a refresher on the basics of editing, if you were not able to make it last week. Details would be posted soon. Hope to see you then. Stay safe!