With entries ranging from a story about a woman falling for a serial killer to a look at why clowns are frightening to some people, the 2014 Statesboro Film Festival was an exciting evening for short film lovers of all genres.
So, the Statesboro Herald and the Averitt Center for the Arts will team up again for the Seventh Annual Statesboro Film Festival to find and honor the best locally made films. The festival is scheduled for 7 p.m. Friday, April 17, at the Averitt Center in downtown Statesboro.
As in the past six years, the festival offers everyone a chance to do what Hollywood does — make your own film. But there are two firsts for this year’s festival: After being held on a Thursday night every year previously, the 2015 festival will take place on a Friday night. And a cash prize — at least $500 — will be awarded to the maker or makers of the best film.
Matt Bankhead again will serve as event coordinator. He is a video producer for statesboroherald.com and the lead producer for The Statesboro Herald Report on Northland Cable and the Studio Statesboro vodcast.
“One of our goals in starting the festival was to provide a creative outlet for filmmakers in the community,” Bankhead said. “That’s our goal again this year. I really encourage everyone to give it a shot.”
Simply put, the Statesboro Film Festival wants your films.
Last year, top honors at the festival went to Daryl Sullivan, who produced a film - "Stabby Stabby Stab Stab" - with no dialogue, but offered an offbeat tale with a serial killer pursuing a young woman in a comical manner. The woman and the man in the mask and hoodie end up having dinner to a bouncy tune. It looks like a happy ending for all, or is it?
Bankhead said the festival is a great venue for not just experienced filmmakers to show their work, but for anyone who has always liked shooting video for fun but wants to take the next step.
“I urge anyone with an itch to see what they can do with a camera to give it a shot,” said Jim Healy, the operations manager for the Herald. “We’ve had films with very high-end production values and films that you wouldn’t say had slick production win awards. The key is having a good story and a passion for wanting to tell that story in a short film.”
Some of the basic submission rules for the festival include: all films can be no longer than eight minutes, there is a $15 submission charge for films submitted by April 3, and $18 after April 3 and by 5:30 p.m. April 10, the final deadline. Also, entered films cannot be shown on YouTube, Facebook or any other mass media site until after the April 17 festival.
All rules and information about the festival can be viewed at www.statesborofilmfestival.com, the festival's official website.
Selected films will be shown at the 2015 Statesboro Film Festival inside the Averitt Center on April 17. Awards will be given for Best Film, Best Director, Best Cinematography and Best Editing.
“Even if you don’t make a film, come to the festival,” Healy said. “For $5, you get to watch about a dozen films, enjoy a delicious catered intermission spread and have a great time.”