Wildcat Spirit Short Film Festival

Electronic Media program holds first ever competition for high school and college students to compete in at WSC

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DaQuan Samuel, Staff Writer

The WSC Electronic Media program hosted the first ever Wildcat Spirit Short Film Festival April 5 in Ramsey Theater.

Prior to the festival, more than 120 high schools and colleges from across the nation submitted short films for review. The festival included workshops for pre-production, acting and directing. It also debuted regional and national high school film showings and national college showings.

“I think it was very beneficial that the department had workshops for the high school students that came,” said senior Emmalee Scheibe. “This way high school students could work with college students within the department, and get a more hands on approach to filming.”

Three previous WSC production films were shown, and senior Natasha White’s film “Kerfuffle” premiered to end the festival. It was followed by an award ceremony. “Kerfuffle” is White’s first film as the lone producer. She wrote the full script and was in charge of the entire project.

“Working on this project I learned that there’s a lot more that goes into making a film than I expected so I had to learn a lot of organizational skills and how to be a leader,” said White. “I’ve never been put into as big of a leadership position as this before.”

There were 10 people on White’s production crew which is larger scale for a Wayne State film. This led to a challenge of communication between the staff. The script itself took White six months to write and develop through the approval process.

“This script is very out of the ordinary with different characters and an experimental ending,” said White. “I wanted people to experience a film they didn’t expect.”

Four of the five production crews from the regional high school film showings attended the festival. The crews answered questions for the audience after their films were shown. Members from all four of the WSC films provided feedback as well.

“I enjoyed watching the films,” said Scheibe. “Especially the ones that were made by the surrounding high schools. They showed a lot of creativity, and you could tell how much time and effort they put into their films.”

Past WSC films including “The End,” “The Captain and Me” and “Orientation,” were all screened at the festival. Alumni Brendan Smyth and Sami Taylor both came back to Wayne to support the film festival as well. Smyth wrote and directed “Orientation” and Taylor wrote the script for “The End”.

Three Wildcats took home film awards at the Festival. Taylor won an award for her work on her film “The End,” Smyth won an award for his film “Orientation” and Scheibe won an award for her work in “The Captain and Me”. White’s Film was not able to compete for any awards since a delay in shooting caused the production team to miss the Feb. 1 deadline for submission.

“I think we had a great turnout for this being the first Wildcat Spirit Film Festival at Wayne State,” said Scheibe “It was really cool that Brendan and Sami came back to be a part of it all, I think their movies are really creative.”