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Campus MovieFest highlights student filmmakers

Less than a week before the Academy Awards, students rushed to turn in the short films they had produced in less than a week to the worlds largest student filmfestival, Campus Movie Fest (CMF).

The festival travels to 70 collegecampuses across the world. Over the past 12 years, more than 500,000 students have participated in making their own short films.

This is the sixth year USF, one of the largest participating schools in thecountry, has been a part of the CMF tradition, with several USF teams placing nationally in the competition.

Nishant Gona, promotionsmanager for CMF and a USF alumnus, said this year 180 teams from USF areparticipating.

The rules were simple.

Each team, composed of one to 20 students,created a five-minute film that was shot andedited between Feb. 12 and Feb. 18. On a first come, first serve basis, teams received a Mac Book Pro with editing software, a Panasonic HD camera and 1,300 licensed free songs. Other than actors, all team members had to be USF affiliates, andprofanity, nudity, drug use and graphic violence was prohibited.

Other than, participants had free reign tocreate their films on topics as serious ormundane as they chose.

Most students produce short fictional films but there are also a few other types such as documentaries, Chad Elswick, ajunior majoring in business and MoviesDirector for the Campus Activities Board, said. Last year was his first yearparticipating in CMF, and this year hedecided to get more involved with thecampus activities board.

Justin Diehl, a sophomoremajoring in engineering, said he got involvedafter seeing a CMF display in the MarshallStudent Center.

Ive always wanted to be an editor, he said.

Diehls film is a collection of randomfive-second clips for which he and his team hope to enter the category ofBest Comedy.

Sophomore Nick Conde and his team, which won the Campus Best Dramacategory last year for its film Bad Beat about a man who finds himself through a game of poker, made afantasy film this year in hopes ofwinning again.

(The idea) just came to me, Conde said.

The event is free, and there are noparticipation or equipment rental fees.

The winners of this years campusmovie fest will be announced at the Red Carpet Event Finale on Feb. 26 at 8 p.m. in the Oval Theatre, when awards will be given out to the Best Picture, BestComedy, Best Drama as well as Best Actor and Actress.

All winners receive a CMF winner t-shirt, and winners of Best Picture, Best Comedy and Best Drama move on to the international event, CMF Hollywood in June 2013. These teams also win a one-year subscription to Adobe Creative Cloud, which includes all of Adobes products, a $600 value.