The festival is hosted by the Enzian Theater, located in Winter Park.
“The Enzian is like a lot of theatres in LA. in that they show lesser-known films,” Jesse Chapman, a graduate of UCF’s film Bachelor of Fine Arts program, said. “It exposes you to a lot of films you wouldn’t see otherwise, even though Orlando is a big city.”
The festival showcases short films produced by student filmmakers from high schools and colleges state-wide, including six from UCF, three from Dr. Phillips High School, three from Full Sail University, eight from Florida State University and 13 from Ringling College of Art + Design. Film types range from music video to horror and documentary to comedy, according to the Enzian Theater’s Web site.
Filmmakers and films from UCF include Allie Kenyon’s “Air Heart,” Jesse Chapman’s “The Exposition Report,” Corey Frost’s “Gone to the Moon,” Craig Calamis’ “The Drifter,” and Cristina Santa Cruz’s “March 31.”
Films were shown on both Saturday and Sunday at 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. There were two sets of about 12 films, per day, according to a press release provided by the Enzian. Each set was approximately 89 minutes long and admission to each program is $5.
Jesse Wolfe, a professor in the UCF film department, advises students on submitting their films to festivals. He said that many of the student films were submitted by UCF faculty, who choose the top films produced by seniors and create a “5 stories” compilation DVD. Many of the films made by UCF students were their capstone, or senior “thesis” films, Wolfe said.
One of Chapman’s films was featured in the festival last year, so he submitted another one this year. Chapman also entered his film into the Florida Film Festival on his own because those who are entered into the festival through Brouhaha are not eligible for awards, only showcasing, he said.
His film, “The Exposition Report,” is a news show-style mockumentary about a 1-800 number social service where children get to go into the opposite of foster care by picking out new parents. The film cost $1,500 to make.
Chapman, who now lives in Los Angeles and works for ABC Family’s television show “10 Things I Hate About You.” He said he likes making movies that are “simpler.”
“In LA, people laugh when you tell them you went to film school. A lot of people start making films with a high school diploma, but not everyone is ready for that,” Chapman said.
“You learn through experience,” Christina Santa Cruz said of the fact that UCF does not hold the rights to student films like many other institutions, allowing filmmakers to be completely independent. “You can build [a film] and make it what you want it to be.”
Cruz’s film, “March 31,” is an account of a young girl’s struggle with loss and grieving told without dialogue, through memories that are thought up and have not actually happened and through images inspired from Cruz’s sketchbook as well as dreams.
The film was dedicated to her grandfather, who died while she was filming a production, which kept her from being able to be present. She saved up for the film, which cost her $4,000 to make, by getting a job and paying out of pocket. Cruz was entered into Brouhaha through the “5 stories” selection.
She is currently beginning to shoot the feature film, “Theodore is Dying” in Scranton, Penn. with fellow UCF film graduate and Brouhaha entry, Allie Kenyon.
Others entered through FilmSlam, a festival open to all Florida filmmakers. In its third year, it occurs once a month every second Sunday, at the Enzian Theater. The winner for that month gets a spot in the Brouhaha festival, which is the finale for those who submitted to FilmSlam, according to the Enzian Theater Web site.
“With so much new technology, it doesn’t cost much to make a movie anymore,” Wolfe said. “Anyone can make a movie. That doesn’t mean a film is any good. A camera is just a recording device; story, theme, and performances are the most important things.”
Winners from this year’s Brouhaha will be selected by a three-member jury and will go on to be featured in a “Best of Brouhaha” program in the 2010 Florida Film Festival April 9-18. Jury members are Sheena Carlisle, Technology and Entertainment Coordinator, Metro Orlando Film Commission; Rave Mehta, CEO, Helio Entertainment; and Justin Strout, Film Editor, Orlando Weekly, according to the Enzian.
Source: Central Florida Future, Festival helps students get their start in filmmaking, by Camille Thomas; Published: Sunday, December 6, 2009, Updated: Sunday, December 6, 2009: Photo credit: Jesse Wolfe.