FLINT—JULY 11, 2017—The Flint Youth Film Festival opens Friday, July 21 at the Flint Institute of Arts with three hours of films created by area middle school, high school and college students. The screening begins at 7 p.m.
Additional screenings of the 21 films by 16 directors and involving 54 crew members and actors, will be take place at Saturday, July 22 at Mott College’s Mott Memorial Building Theater at 7 p.m. and at the University of Michigan-Flint University Center Kiva Theater at 2 p.m. The festival is free.
New this year, audience attending the festival will be able to vote for the Audience Choice Award, which will be presented at the award ceremony Thursday, July 27 at the FIA.
The awards ceremony celebrates the work of these 70 young filmmakers in traditional Hollywood style — red carpet, paparazzi, awards, cash prizes and an afterglow with refreshments. The event begins at 5:30 p.m. and is free and open to the public.
The films by directors and crew ranging in age from 14 to 25 are being judged by professional filmmakers locally and from around the country. Judging in the categories of non-fiction and fiction from middle school, high school, and college/young adult entries will determine those films that will be honored with cash prizes. Special awards also will be made to films for outstanding achievement in cinematic storytelling and authenticity and humane treatment of a subject.
According to Festival Director Rodney W. Brown, judges are evaluating entries for storytelling, overall production quality, originality, persuasive point of view, emotional impact, technical proficiency, and risk-taking.
The films are now on exhibition in the FIA’s Fleckenstein Video Gallery through July 30.
“The exhibition is the best prize of all for these filmmakers,” Donna Ullrich, Flint Youth Media Project director said. “The exhibition is resume building for their preparation to enter college or media career fields.”
The Flint Youth Media Project is a program of the University of Michigan-Flint Communication Department with partners Mott College Media Arts and Entertainment Technology program and the Flint Institute of Arts.
No special filmmaking equipment was required to enter the festival, according to Ullrich. Participants were encouraged to use smartphones, digital cameras, tablets and computers to film and edit their productions. “Whatever they had available. It was about how creative they could be both technically and in terms of content,” she said.
Entries came from school media programs as well as individuals, Ullrich said.
The FYFF also sponsored 14 film making workshops during the 2016-2017 school year for interested students and community residents. The workshops covered everything from preproduction to post production to lighting, camera work, sound, animation, editing, direction and script writing, and were hosted by Mott Community College.
The entries to the festival will also be available for viewing after July 30 at the festival website: www.flintyouthfilmfestival.com.
Additional sponsors are iMichigan Productions and Mophead Artistics. Funding was provided by the A.G. Bishop Trust, James A. Welch Foundation, Community Foundation of Greater Flint, UM-Flint, and the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs.
Student filmmakers are available for interviews.
Workshop photos available as well.