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Seven student films featured in Campus Film Symposium bring together cinematographers, students

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Films featured in the first Campus Film Symposium included “Super Gangsters,” “Wizardy 101,” the documentary “Let’s Talk About Education” and the half-hour feature film “The Runner.”

The first annual Campus Film Symposium took place on a cold, wet Friday night and gave students an opportunity to escape the weather and watch a series of short student films. 

The symposium, hosted by the recently-formed Film Production Society, featured six short student film pieces, as well as the Film Production Society’s half-hour feature “The Runner.”

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Professors Pam Knaus, Jana Raadik Cottrell and Kristina Quynn served as guest judges and evaluated the films. The panel voted on the top three productions. The audience also participated in the award process by voting on their favorite film.

The audience pick for best film was “Mr. Dirty” by Ramlife Entertainment Crew. 

“We got a bunch of people together to film and it turned out all right,” said Beau Rainey, the film’s director and editor.

The film, written by Rainey and the actors on a Thursday night, was filmed over the course of 10 hours the following Monday, takes a comedic angle on the Procter and Gamble cleaning supplies’ character Mr. Clean. Mr. Dirty is the misfit in the Clean family, and one day the Clean family does an intervention to discuss the ways of Mr. Dirty. In short, the intervention does not go as planned and leaves one of the family members murdered by a bottle of ketchup. Attempts are made to revive the family member using bar soap as defibrillator electrode pads. 

“I think the humor (of the film) fit and connected with the audience,” Rainey said.

The first-place judge’s pick was the introduction to the documentary “Let’s Talk About Education” by senior Dylan Drendel. 

The four-minute clip featured the stillness of empty lecture halls and the fast-paced campus life. The voiceless clip incorporated silence as well as a musical accompaniment produced by Drendel.

“I didn’t really know what to expect coming into it, but I was just really happy to get that kind of feedback. I thought it was cool to get some professors to come and watch the films,” Drendel said.

The second-place judge’s pick was the comedy “Super Gangsters” produced by GBJ Studios. It included an undercover cop, a mock-serious interrogation and a crew of gangsters with impractical superpowers. The third-place judge’s pick was “Mr. Dirty.”

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Freshman Robyn Pierce starred in “Wizardy 101,” produced by the Film Production Society president Jacob Berg. 

“I’ve always loved acting, and when Jacob said he needed a main character, I stepped up and wanted to see what it’s like,” Pierce said.

The film takes place in the brightly-lit library basement and features a magical battle between a sorceress and a hooded stranger. The film relied heavily on special effects. 

Playing the role of the sorceress was not an easy pursuit for Pierce.

“It was a little bit challenging. It’s hard to be scared when there’s nothing to be scared of. Acting in general is difficult,” Pierce said.

The film symposium served as an outlet for students to share their creative works, as well as bring together cinematographers and movie-lovers alike.

“The film community should be bigger at CSU,” said Riley Ross, a CSU sophomore. “I think it’s awesome that Jacob brought them together.”

Collegian Reporter Nicole Towne can be reached at news@collegian.com or on Twitter @nicole_towne21.

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