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Filmmakers feel Adrenaline rush

Posted on March 10, 2014 | in News | by

Lane students showcase skills in local film competition

Teams of local students and filmmakers will hustle to create a short film in 72 hours during the fifth annual Adrenaline Film Project. Cinema Pacific will screen the films at University of Oregon.

Each team is allowed only three primary members. During those 72 hours, teams will create, from scratch, a short film lasting three to five minutes.

On the final day of the competition, participating groups will view each other’s completed work. This screening will then be followed by a ceremony, in which the teams that created the top three films will receive cash prizes and equipment.

“Everyone gets a certificate of completion and we give away first-, second- and third- place prizes. Last year, it was all cash. The year before that, they gave away cameras, I think,” Project Coordinator Laurette Granger said.

An invitation is extended to anyone who wants to be involved.

“We do want it to be a community event,” Granger said. “We would like to see more community participation.”

She has been working to increase participation from Lane students and community members since the project’s inception.

“Last year, we had 12 teams: one team from Lane and a community team — the rest were from UO,” Granger said.

Lane student Jonathan Klimoski contributed a film last year.

“Adrenaline’s cool. It’s definitely the most intensive and rewarding 72-hour experience I’ve had,” he said.

As they grind through their projects, the teams are not alone.

Three industry professionals visit the UO campus to mentor the competitors from start to finish. The mentors drive around Eugene and visit each set. If any team is struggling, the professionals assist, sources said.

Granger said this year, students get to pick the brain of Kick-Ass 2 director and acting coach Jeff Wadlow.

Contestants also come to L.A. mentors when they are ready to move to the next phase in the filmmaking process.

“Until they give the green light, they can’t move on with their film,” Garner said.

To apply, teams must provide a short film no longer than 10 minutes and an application, in addition to a $30 fee. But not every team makes the cut.

“Last year, we got 38 applications, and we take 12 teams,” Garner said.

The selected teams get together for a meet-and-greet on the first night. At that time, they meet their mentors, select talent from a pool of actors and receive the three criteria their films must satisfy.

“It’s kind of an unveiling. They get everyone together after you’ve met all your potential cast. Last year, we got our genre first. They laid out cards on the ground. Then, team members went up to select one and that was your team genre. After that, once everyone knew what vein of storytelling they were going to be working in, you got your prop and your line of dialogue,” Klimoski said.

The prop and dialogue aren’t random. They’re inspired by cultures that border the Pacific Ocean. Hence, the project’s name: Cinema Pacific. Each year, two focus nations are chosen. This year, the countries will be Chile and Taiwan, Garner said.

Once they’re given the criteria, the teams are free to begin the creative process.

“There was no sleeping involved,” Klimoski said. “I maybe got eight hours collectively of sleep from the first two nights — the third night, absolutely no sleep. I had been awake for 52 consecutive hours by the time the after-party wrapped.”

Organizers selected this particular format to keep things different year to year. By keeping themes a secret, it levels the playing field. It also keeps students from using already established work and forces them to create a new product exclusively for the festival.

“You can’t really prepare. That’s kind of the fun of it — or the stress of it. Everyone has a great time, and it can be stressful, but that’s part of the learning process,” Garner said.

Lane multimedia arts director Jeff Goolsby said 72-hour film projects have become increasingly popular over the years.

He is glad that Lane has students who are willing to participate in events like these.

“It’s super-intense. There’s a lot of emotion on the set. There’s time pressure from the start, but they come out with really wonderful short films. It’s one of those activities that the students will say was the most horrible thing they ever did, and they can’t wait to do it again,” Goolsby said.

The deadline for the Adrenaline Film Project was recently extended to March 7. Coordinators have done this as a courtesy to students and community members that may have had trouble meeting the initial March 3 deadline, Garner said.

“We try to be accommodating. We’re part of your community,” she said.

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