Friday, December 3, 2010

Open Frame Scholarships For New Students!

Great news!

The Communication Arts Department has just been notified that we can award several $1000 scholarships to incoming new students next year. This $1000 will be awarded based on merit and participation in the Open Frame.

The deadline for applications is this coming weekend! (December 10th) Because of financial aid awards and the nature of the academic year, the turnaround time is really fast, but hopefully, if you know possible interested candidates, you can pass this information on.

** this just in: we can accept applications for one week after the deadline! **

Applicants will be invited to come to a scholarship day for interviews and screenings in January.

Please email arudd at malone dot edu for more information *or* at gmail dot com.

New Film Concentration at Malone

After eight years of Open Frame Films, and an increasing array of film classes at Malone, I'm thrilled to announce that Malone officially offers an academic "film concentration" within the Communication Arts Major.

Film Concentration students will take Media Production I & II, Editing, Directing, World Cinema, History and Theory of Film and choose between Scriptwriting (for the writers among you) and Photojournalism (for the documentarians and cinematographers among you).

We do also offer a general education course, History of the American Dream in Film: 1950s to the Present, which students may opt to take. We also strongly encourage our students to take advantage of the rich resources of the Los Angeles Film Studies Center -- a resource that Malone students regularly participate in.

Like all Communication Art majors, these students will continue to take courses that prepare them broadly for communication-related careers, and build key communication skills. And our program will continue to focus on developing students as STORYTELLERS committed to the COMMUNITIES they serve ENGAGING CULTURE (not avoiding or shunning it like some evangelical Christian Universities).

Film students will continue to make films for the Open Frame Film Fest, they'll continue to collaborate with our student journalists in the AVISO AVW, and they'll continue to make films for classwork and in the local Canton community (through programs like reelate.

Location:Malone University, Canton, Ohio

Aviso Coverage....

Have you checked out this story from Malone's student newspaper the Aviso, yet? If not, click the link. The story also features this video from last year's festival.

Open Frame Film Festival from Malone TV on Vimeo.

Those of you who are alum will appreciate the nostalgia; the music was composed by (now) senior filmmaker, Jordan Scott. The images were assembled by (now) senior, award-winning student-film producer, Monica Small. A section of (brilliant) editing was done by award-winning alumni, (the inimitable) Andrew Gates.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Upcoming Indie Filmmakers Workshop

Next semester’s Indie Filmmaker Workshops promise some great insights, skills and opportunities. Announcements about those should fill your inboxes soon.
Have you signed up for RSS feed from our blog?
or joined our facebook group?
Those are the best ways to stay up-to-date about Open Frame opportunities.
If you’d like to receive regular emails in the future, please *DO* email us at [at] gmail [dot] com

You can sign up to receive emails about:
  • all upcoming events productions,
  • receive emails ONLY about Indie FIlmmaker Workshops,
  • receive emails only about student film productions, or
  • receive emails about opportunities for non-student involvement.
Please indicate the type of emails you’d like to receive if you email us back!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Indie Filmmakers was a Good Time.

We had a great night hearing about the experiences, approaches and work of Ted Sikora and Chad Kapper. Everyone came away a richer filmmaker and film-viewer. Thanks to these talented guys and their willingness to share!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Grant Winners Announced

This year, we asked students to put together a proposal advocating for funding for their various projects. We received a number of proposals, and while the department will continue to support and develop any interested students and their projects, a jury consisting of faculty, staff and a filmmaker outside of Malone have voted on the proposals, and the following winners are the outcome.

Congratulations to

HIDDEN LIABILITIES (Dusty Jenkins and Michael Popp)


HATCHETMEN (David Garwood)

Each of these projects have been awarded $200 for production expenses.

Congratulations to Corinne Abbiss who wins the runner-up grant of $500 for her project, THE MEMORIES WITHIN. This script won this year’s script contest.

The winner of the $1000 grant is Taylor Hazlett for CUSTOMER SATISFACTION.

These projects along with many other student projects will be entering the production cycle shortly. Please get involved volunteering, crewing and collaborating with these students.

Chad Kapper Presents at Malone University.

Chad Kapper, local director and founder of Stonekap Productions, made SARAH'S CHOICE in 2009. He'll be talking about how to run an effective set along with Ted Sikora this Tuesday evening, October 26th from 7:30 til 8:30 at Malone University in the Silk Auditorium.

Here's the SARAH'S CHOICE trailer:

Sarah's Choice from Pure Flix on Vimeo.

The Indie Filmmakers Workshop is designed to resource student filmmakers with film-making skills and know-how. This session is free and open to the public.

Ted Sikora Comes to Malone.

Ted Sikora, writer and director of the award-winning HERO TOMORROW will be one of the panelists at the Indie Filmmakers Workshop at Malone University in the Silk Auditorium on Tuesday night at 7:30. This hour long session will include tips for running an effective set, and will include opportunities for Q & A.

Check out the trailer or HERO TOMORROW:

Hero Tomorrow Trailer from Ted Sikora on Vimeo.

Director Chad Kapper will also be on the panel and students and the session is free and open to the public.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Indie Filmmaker Workshop! This Tuesday!

This one hour session will feature two Northeast Ohio filmmakers who have made successful feature length films.

Ted Sikora and Chad Kapper will share some of their best tips for running an effective set, and there will be plenty of time for asking questions.

Networking is always featured at Indie Filmmaker Workshops, so come to meet other local filmmakers too!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Open Frame Grant Contest

This year the Communication Arts Department will award production grants to worthy film projects. The top grant will include a budget of $1000 along with priority access to equipment and facilities. Other student grants will also award priority for equipment and facilities and will include $200 budgets. Students may apply for these grants anytime from tomorrow (October 1st) until October 11th at 8 am.

The top grant will be awarded competitively based on which production application best meets the following criteria:

This film and production will exemplify the Malone University Mission and the Mission of the Communication Arts Department.

This film is based on a winning script from the 2010 writing contest.

This film will allow a very significant number of Malone students to gain filmmaking experience and contribute to their learning experiences.

The production application demonstrates the producer's / director's ability to plan well for the various demands of a film shoot.

The producer has either assembled an impressive crew of collaborators or presents a persuasive case that s/he will be able to do so.

*in cases when other factors are relatively equal, upperclass students will have a slight advantage over lower. In such cases, seniors would have the most advantage.

The mini-grants will not employ criteria number two to evaluate the validity of applications.

The grant selection committee will include Communication Arts Faculty members, Faculty members from other departments on campus, alumni and community filmmakers.

Your actual grant application should be no more than three pages. You should provide an additional title page and you may provide appendices of evidence to demonstrate the points you make in your application. While you may include any information you would like to in the application, you must include a one sentence summary of the short film and a one paragraph summary of the short film. Other materials you may want to include (either as appendices or in summary):

An artistic vision,

Statements about the project's unique merits

An explanation of the production approach

A tentative production schedule

Tentative storyboards

Tentative crew members (who have indicated interest)
Strategies for recruiting talent and crew

Tentative locations for filming

A list of other producers or collaborators.

Any letters of recommendation about the director's or producer's ability to complete a project like this one.

a director's reel

While any of these materials may be included, none of them are required. Applicants are STRONGLY URGED to make mention of each of the items in the appendices within their application to encourage the judging panel to examine them.

The winners of the grants will be announced on October 20th by 5 pm

You can see a short film proposal here. While this proposal was prepared for a micro-documentary, and to elicit the support collaborators, it gives you a rough sense of how a proposal might unfold.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Malone University Student Films to Screen at Canton Palace International Film Festival

Ten Malone University student films will play at the Canton Palace International Film Fest. Winning entries from earlier years were submitted to the festival, but once festival programmers reviewed the Open Frame discs, they invited four more films to be included, too.

The films playing at the festival include the following

Questionable Behavior directed by Stephen Thomas / 13 min. / 2008 / Narrative Fiction
Will the police officer succeed in his attempt to bring in this drunken driver? Will the driver manage to keep his wits about him? Or are these the wrong questions to be asking?

Another Winter in Canton directed by Dan Walton / 5:20 min. / 2009 / Experimental
One long day in Canton, Ohio shows the quiet and subtle beauty of winter set to the music of a local band, Wild Boy of Aveyron.

Definition directed by Alyssa Pearson / 14:37 min. / 2009 / Narrative Fiction
Val Carter feels trapped in monotony and decides to take drastic measures to escape her mundane reality. The further she is from familiarity, the more she learns that assigning meaning to her life does not need to be so definite.

Sloth directed by Dusty Jenkins / 16 min. / 2009 / Documentary
An impromptu game invented by bored college students becomes a cherished tradition lasting for seven years despite threats from the institution and even the city.

Benedict Sexton directed by Dusty Jenkins and Michael Popp / 12:44 min. / 2010 / Narrative Fiction
A break-in at midnight morphs into an unlikely connection.

Keepsakes directed by Alyssa Pearson / 16:26 min. / 2010 / Narrative Fiction
Aiden's estranged grandmother has just passed away, leaving him in a state of mournful disappointment. At the release of the will, he finds a to-do list written in her hand. Spontaneously, he decides to attempt the written tasks in order to get to know her.

Two for Tuesday directed by Ryan Baechel / 5 min. / 2009 / Experimental
One night with big questions is handled in a trippy, dreamlike (?), drugged-out (?) way in this experimental short about personal spiritual struggle.

(w)hole directed by Taylor Hazlett / 6:14 min. / 2010 / Narrative Fiction
This silent film uses iconic images to wander through a girl’s journey into adulthood. The story is big, the telling is simple. A parable about loss and recovery.

Always directed by Ashley Barstow / 3:49 min. / 2010 / Short Documentary Subject
This short documentary uses old family films to explore the connection between a song and a relationship.

Chalk Burst directed by Nate Ross, Chris DeMichel, & Meredith Borling /3:51 min. /2008 /Experimental. A class project yielded this stop motion meditation on beauty and movement; on art and nature.

The films will play at the Canton Palace Theatre downtown in Canton, Ohio on Friday, October 8th from 12:10 pm until 1:55 pm. Cost of admission is $4 per person. Some of the filmmakers will be on hand for Q & A afterward.

More information about the Canton Palace International Film Festival.

Monday, September 27, 2010


For the first time in Open Frame history, an OPEN FRAME winner is being announced in September.
This year, the OPEN FRAME for SCREENPLAY was determined by an illustrious jury of our alumni.

Seven different writers (including two collaborative scripts) wrote seven different scripts this year. The overall quality of entries was up (again!) this year, and the scores given by the judges to the top four scripts was impressively competitive.

The runner-up script HIDDEN LIABILITIES was written by writing team Dusty Jenkins and Michael Popp and included a psychological thriller noir tone.

The winner of this year’s OPEN FRAME for scriptwriting goes to.....

Corinne Abbiss for THE MEMORIES WITHIN.

This is the first script that Corinne has submitted to the Open Frame contest, and while she DP’d (W)HOLE last year, this script will be her first script - to - screen production this year.

THE MEMORIES WITHIN tells a story about loss and recovery through a visit to a flea market. It’s a non-linear story about memory, forgiveness, family and grief. Corinne spent her summer writing the script and is looking forward to directing it during spring semester. She’s looking to fill her crew positions now, so if you’re interested in producing or crewing -- let her know.

The top four scripts (because their scores are so close) will vie for the Communication Department Production Grant this year ($1000). The Communication Arts Department will also fund other films this year with mini-grants ($200 each). The grant contest entries are due on Monday, October 11th at 8 a.m..

Congratulations to the five qualifying writers. The qualifying entries this year are:


Dusty Jenkins & Michael Popp HIDDEN LIABILITIES

Taylor Hazlett & Erin Chilensky CUSTOMER SATISFACTION

Erin Chilensky TORN

Thanks to all of our alumni judges and our talented, hard-working writers.

Sunday, September 19, 2010


The first Indie Filmmakers Workshop focused on Pre-Production will be held


September 21st

from 7:30 to 8:30

in the Silk Auditorium

Mitchell Hall

Malone University

RSVP to Kerrie at 330.471.820

find out more by clicking this link.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Indie Filmmaker Workshops Return!

Some of you came to the SCREENWRITING INDIE FILMMAKER WORKSHOP last year; this year, we got a little *more* institutional support so that we can pull off even more sessions.

You can read about the sessions we'll be sponsoring and put them on your calendar now by clicking on this link.

More information will be rolling out about each session as they get nearer.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


This year the Communication Arts Department will sponsor a script writing contest to find one script that might be developed into a festival-ready short film of the highest caliber. All scripts submitted to the contest will be reviewed by five qualified judges. Writers will receive feedback both in the form of narrative comments and rankings based on the various criteria. The top three scripts will be eligible for the departmentally sponsored film. The top script (regardless of whether it is chosen to be produced) will receive an OPEN FRAME AWARD at this year’s festival event.

Scripts may be in any genre. Fresh innovative stories told in a cinematic way are best. Scripts may range from one minute to sixteen minutes (one minute = on page in screenplay format). Scripts must be submitted in standard screenplay format. Scripts MUST include a title page, but may NOT include the authors name.

You should submit your script by email. You should send the email to Andrew Rudd and your script should be in PDF format, with a title, but NO authorial name. In the email you attach your script to, you should list your name, major, script name, and indicate whether you would:

a. prefer to direct your script, but would allow someone else to direct it,
b. prefer NOT to direct your script, and desire another director for it,
c. be ambivalent about whether you direct your script,
d. prefer to direct your script, and would not want your script to be directed by anyone else.

Scripts open to other directors will have a slight edge in the competition.

Scripts are due on September 13th, 2010 at 8 am. Contest winners will be announced on September 20th at 5 pm on the Open Frame Blog.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Watch Great Short Films

There are many places to watch short films. The series FUTURE SHORTS on youtube is one of the best curators of good films, but you can find them in many other places, too.

If you live in Stark County (or while you're at Malone) there is a short film series that screens every month, first wednesday of the month at 6:30 p.m. at the downtown library. The films are excellent.

I recommend that as you watch short films, you try to develop a sense of what makes short subjects work. Jot down ideas for short films of your own.

Read Professional Scripts

You can find endless quality scripts online. I strongly advise you to read scripts for movies that you have already seen that way you can think well about how the film translates into visual storytelling.

I also caution you about some of the scripts you will find floating around on the internet. Many of them are simply transcriptions by hacks that are living in their parent's basement without anything better to do. Like write their own screenplays. In other words, I have nothing against living in your parent's basement. Just living in your parents basement transcribing fake screenplays from movies you dig. I have a problem with that. Am I off track here? Just wanted to warn you about those fake scripts. Once you've read a few real ones and compared them to standard Hollywood formatting, you'll be able to spot these fakes a million miles away.

Some sites I recommend include

Simply Scripts


The Screenplay Database

Both of these sites have excellent, legit scripts. Check them out.

Standard Screenplay Format

Because Malone is an educational institution, and the OPEN FRAME is an educational program, we're always interested in resourcing students for the things they may do after they graduate.

While script formats vary from medium to medium, one of the most important part of learning the craft of screenwriting (or any kind of scriptwriting) is learning to write within the formatting specs shared by professionals.

Standard formats help readers identify important elements of the script more quickly, they help producers organize pre-production and production more efficiently and they help everyone involved in the script have a more clear and shared sense of the vision, length, tone and dynamics of a script.

There are many excellent books on screenwriting. Most of them include a chapter or at least a section on formatting.

The best way to learn formatting, though, in my mind is:

1. read professional scripts, and

2. use professional screenwriting software to write your first script.

I strongly recommend using CELTX - a free software available for download at - for the beginning scriptwriter this software and its support materials offer a wealth of helpful resources. I also use Final Draft, an industry standard software. Final Draft is impressive in its updates, its resources, its ease of navigation...and the price? Well, it reflects the top-of-the-line status.

While standard screenplay format is essential (if you don't have it -- it's a deal breaker), it's not enough. Your main focus as a writer should be story. So try to balance learning the craft *and* building your storytelling muscles.

The best way to build your storytelling muscles is:

1. watch great short films,

2. write scripts!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Open Frame Film Fest Winners, 2010

Best Acting Performance - Chloe Asselin for That Kind of AFFECTION

Best Score - Joel Maze, Keepsakes

Best Cinematography - Nate Ross, Keepsakes

Best Editing - Jordan Grubbs for (w)hole

Best Publicity - Alyssa Pearson, Danyella Toneli, Monica Small, Connie Clapper, Keepsakes

Best Outside Contribution - Kate Tasseff, Lead Actress, (w)hole

Best Screenplay - Erin Chilensky That Kind of AFFECTION

Best Film - Keepsakes written, directed, produced and edited by Alyssa Pearson; Producers: Danyella Tonelli, Monica Small, Connie Clapper,

Audience Award - Keepsakes by Alyssa Pearson

Thursday, April 22, 2010

The Open Frame Film Fest Is Here!

Don't miss it, tomorrow night, April 23rd. This is the only night that these films will play on a big screen together to a packed house. Don't miss it.

written and directed by Dusty Jenkins and Michael Popp

written and directed by Alyssa Pearson

written and directed by Taylor Hazlett

conceived and directed by Ryan Baechel

a short documentary by first time filmmaker Ashley Barstow

**that kind of AFFECTION**
written and directed by Erin Chilensky

written & directed by Kyle Mallow

written & directed by Jordan Scott

written & directed by Dusty Jenkins

created by Nate Ross, Chris DeMichel, and Meredith Borling

written & directed by Stephen Thomas

written and directed by Dusty Jenkins

See you there!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Submission Information

The Open Frame deadline arrives! Soon!

Films are due to me, in my office by Tuesday, April 14th at 9 am. The length limit is a firm seventeen minutes INCLUDING credits — tho’ I hope we’re going to get some films that are shorter? Those are real audience pleasers. I know that we have at least ONE music video. Which I’m pretty excited about. I hope that we’ll have more than just one???

Anyway. Please remember that accepted filmmakers are required to volunteer minimally four hours during the week of the festival. If your film is accepted, you’ll be notified on the 14th. I need everyone to reserve at least one hour of volunteer labor for the DAY OF the film festival (April 24th), but encourage you to use your other volunteer hours to promote the event and specifically your film. I encourage you to make posters & hang them around campus — I encourage you to include some face to face promotion but web promotion is both encouraged and expected.

If your film is accepted, you will be asked to nominate people for the following categories. Not all categories will receive an award. Only fulltime Malone students are eligible for Open Frame awards (except the one award, obviously).

If your film is accepted, you will also be asked to submit two – three high quality stills for promotional and event purposes.

I prefer to receive your film either on a hard drive in QUICKTIME format — OR you may send it to me using BOX.NET (email me for more info on

Potential Award Categories:

Best Actor

Best Actress

Best Actor / Actress in a Supporting Role

Best Publicity

Best Original Score

Best Outside Contribution

Best Cinematography

Best Screenplay

Best Director

Best Film

Best Song

Best Experimental Work

Audience Award

Friday, April 2, 2010

Why have an "Open Frame"?

We hope that this contest is an opportunity for students to create films together that will provide visions of truth, opportunities for reflection, images of transformation and reconciliation.

Since making films is always collaborative -- the process of producing these films will invite students to create community with one another around this creative expression.

The film contest supplements Communication Arts Department curriculum by giving students an opportunity to enact skills taught in a broad range of courses and to develop qualities essential to personal and professional success.

Student films provide important portfolio material for students interested in careers in media production.

Creating films allows students an important opportunity to develop “voice” – the ability to tell a coherent story in an engaging way is a skill that will aid them in a broad range of contexts and careers.

We also hope that the audiences who watch these films will receive a new "frame" for seeing the world -- hopefully in a richer, fuller, better way.

This year's event will be held on Friday, April 23rd at 10 p.m. in the Johnson Center Chapel.