Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Announcing the Department Sponsored Films

The Communication Arts Department proudly announces that this year the department will sponsor THREE student films. No, we haven't come into a vast fortune. We did, however have three distinct director / script proposals that we couldn't pass up. The following three films will be "sponsored" by the Communication Arts Department:

(w)hole - directed by Taylor Hazlett

Keepsakes - directed by Alyssa Pearson

Benedict Sexton - directed by Dusty Jenkins & Michael Popp

You should get involved with one of these films (or one of the several others that are also in production this year). More details about the production teams and production schedules will soon be available on this blog.

Stay tuned.

Monday, November 2, 2009


This year marked a new record in that eleven scripts were submitted for the Open Frame.

A panel of 18 alumni carefully poured over these submissions. Using a standardized ranking system, each writer will have the opportunity to receive feedback about their script this year. Due to the generosity of our alumni judges, Malone students will be able to read open-ended feedback and statistical responses -- an unusual privilege for beginning writers. (THANKS, alumni!)

Four scripts have been selected as winners this year (though only two will proceed to department-sponsored production); it is my sincere hope that each of these scripts will be developed into short films, regardless of the department sponsorship.

The next two weeks of our contest will provide directors the opportunity to apply for the department-sponsored film. You can read more about the director's contest here.

The winning scripts this year include:


BENEDICT SEXTON by Dusty Jenkins

KEEPSAKES by Alyssa Pearson

(W)HOLE by Taylor Hazlett

Congratulations to all four writers and to the rest of the writers who submitted their work to the Open Frame Script Contest. Thanks for your hard work, developing craft and your commitment to creativity, vision and beauty!

Director's Contest

This year, the directors contest will build on the Open Frame Writing Contest in a new way.

Each director applicant must turn in the following materials by November 12th at midnight:

1. A director's vision statement of one of this year's winning scripts.

2. A list of (1 - 3) producers or *key players* (editor, cinematographer, art director, lead actor) they have (tentatively) recruited for the project.

3. A 30 second - 2 minute reel, posted on youtube or vimeo, demonstrating their abilities as a director.

*please email Andrew Rudd for copies of this year's winning scripts.

Your Director's Reel

A director's reel may be comprised of previous projects you've completed. These projects may vary from newsreel footage to photography to other short films.

You will probably want to demonstrate some ability to use visual storytelling for dramatic development during at least one portion of the reel. The reel does not need to include sync sound, but it may.

You may collaborate others to help you create the reel -- a Director of Photography, an editor, and actors. You may also use footage from earlier projects that you participated in as a DP, editor or director.

Please only use music legally for your reel.

You may want to even shoot something as simple as dialogue from one of the winning scripts, using a flip cam and some good light.

A Director's Vision Statement

Should include a re-telling and analysis of the script they are proposing to direct.

(Directors may create vision statements for as many of the scripts as they would be willing to direct.)

A director's vision statement should highlight the key emotional highlights of the script and explain some ideas for executing the more challenging technical dimensions of the script. The director should include a statement about why this project works for them personally.

A directors vision statement should be no more than one typed page.