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Students to explore film through MovieFest

The Campus MovieFest (CMF) arrives at USF this week to kick off the week-long competition with an information session tonight at 6 in the Marshall Student Center (MSC) room 3700.

Every year CMF visits over 30 college campuses across the country to help students explore the field of movie making. 

The official launch of CMF at USF will be Wednesday. While registration online at campusmoviefest.com/usf is encouraged, students are also welcome to register at the launch event.

The CMF team brings film equipment to campus — including cameras, portable hard drives and laptops with the full Adobe Cloud suite — for students to check out and use to make a five-minute short film.

Each team, composed of between one and 20 students, is to create a five-minute film that’s shot and edited between Feb. 10 and Feb. 16. Other than actors, all team members have to be USF affiliates.

“This movie can be anything they want — any genre, any category,” Wey Lin, promotions manager of CMF, said. 

“It can be comedy, drama, horror. It can be a commercial … we always try to be a creative outlet for any student, especially those who aren’t in a specific art or communications major.”

CMF started at Emory University in 2001 when four students provided their peers with everything to make a movie for one week. Since then, it has become the largest student film festival in the world, with more than a million students participating annually.

After a week to create their movies, the top sixteen are shown at CMF’s Red Carpet Event in the MSC Oval Theater on Feb. 22 at 7 p.m., with the four winners moving on to the national finals in Atlanta in June. 

The national winner will receive $150,000, a one-year subscription to Adobe Creative Cloud and the chance to travel to the Cannes International Film Festival — the largest film festival in the word — for the Short Film Corner in the south of France over the summer.

USF teams have placed nationally before in the past nine years and is one of the largest participating universities. 

Due to the aid and support of companies, there’s no entry fee for students and all equipment loans are free. According to Lin, students have nothing to lose since if they register and find that the competition isn’t for them then they can simply return the equipment.

“There’s no money involved,” she said. “They don’t need to bring a team or a script. Just a student ID, another form of photo ID, and the equipment is there. It’s just a once in a lifetime opportunity for students … It’s a crazy fun experience, we’re only here once a year and it’s a great way to get some valuable insight into film.”