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A film festival thank you

| Monday, February 1, 2016

This past weekend, I was very fortunate to have one of my films featured in the Notre Dame Student Film Festival. I have been attending the Festival since I was a freshman in high school and was more than thrilled to be participating in one for the first time. For those who do not know, the Notre Dame Student Film Festival screens films made by undergraduates during the past year as class projects. These students study the art of filmmaking in advanced, intermediate and introductory film production courses taught in the department of film, television and theatre (FTT). All films are shot on location and often feature the acting talents of Notre Dame students and faculty.

After all the script revisions, cast auditions, long days on set and hours spent in the editing rooms, the Festival was the best reward I could have imagined. It is an incredible feeling to be able to sit back and recognize you and your classmates’ work as art, not just a completed assignment. The documentaries featured in the festival were excellent. Not only were they beautifully crafted, but they allowed me to see sides of this campus that I would otherwise may not have known. “Spark of Madness,” by Anna Gonzalez, finds the method behind the humor of Notre Dame Student Standups. This documentary featured Liz Hynes, a classmate I transferred into Notre Dame with and had class with last semester almost every day. I already knew she was a hilarious genius, but the documentary gave me insight into all the hard work that goes into the shows she puts on. In this same way, each film gave me some new insight into Notre Dame and who my classmates really are.

Sitting next to my family and best friends while watching these films was an experience I will never forget. To my classmates, Moira Hamilton, Tanner Cipriano, John Salazar, Liza Connor and everyone else that I have worked with in class: You are inspiring, creative individuals and an honor to work with. In the FTT department, I feel truly honored to be surrounded by so many people that I know will continue to be successful filmmakers in the future. This semester, I am lucky enough to be working with two very talented girls in my Advanced Digital Cinema Production class, Jill Chipley and Liz Konicek. In just the first two meetings I have had with them, I can already tell we have a great project in the works. Congratulations to all the Festival participants, and thank you so much to all those who came out to support your favorite Notre Dame filmmakers.

The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.

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