Zooom showcasing area’s young talent
Wednesday, Oct 04, 2017 06:00 am
Budding filmmakers are making their debut on the big screen at Okotoks’ Zooom Film Festival this weekend.
Fifteen films have been submitted to the youth festival through the Okotoks Arts Council, featuring a variety of genres ranging from live action to narrative, according to Zooom Film Festival director Shawna Koski.
“We’ve got some that are almost documentary style and some that are very narrative driven and live actions and some are a little bit more abstract,” she said. “It’s all over the board.”
The films will be screened at Okotoks Cinemas Oct. 7 at 10 a.m.
This marks the third year the Okotoks Arts Council has sponsored the annual film festival, which challenges youth to share their stories through video.
The competition requires the team leader be between the ages of 11 and 18 and the films must be three to 10 minutes in length.
The submission deadline was Aug. 31.
Fifteen-year-old Maria Zimmermann created a film with her sister Taylor Hinton-Turik, 17, called Reminiscence, about two characters who fear they’re being stalked by a cougar.
Zimmermann took a different angle on the film after submitting a serious one last year about a girl who heals people with her voice, which won honourable mention.
“Last year’s was so serious and I had so many people involved, I thought we are going to keep it very simple this time,” she said.
Filming took about four days and Zimmermann said she’s happy with how it turned out.
“I like filmmaking so much and I love acting,” said the Alberta High School of Fine Arts (AHSFA) student. “I would love to be a professional actor in the film industry.
“This is a great opportunity, especially for people in the 12 to 15 age range where it’s really hard to get any other work in the film industry.”
Jack Pugh, also an AHSFA student, submitted an interpretive film he made with friends for a Grade 9 cinematography project called La Pizza.
He describes it as a clever parody of underground films.
“I thought it would be cool to see it on the big screen and see what other people are doing,” he said. “I like that (the film festival) is small so I can enter what I want without feeling too ashamed of myself.”
Many of this year’s films surpass last year’s selection and vary in theme, Koski said.
The Okotoks Arts Council hosted three workshops for young filmmakers during the spring to teach them how to make a film and encourage them to enter the festival, said Koski.
“We want to grow filmmaking in the community because we at the arts council are targeting different kind of arts forms,” she said. “Now with Okotoks having an adult professional festival we wanted to do something that is getting kids to practice filmmaking techniques.”
Koski said the top three films and two honourable mentions have been selected and the top prizes will be $600, $400 and $300.
A reception will take place before the screening of about 90 minutes of film footage before the winners are announced.
The cost to attend the screening is $10 and tickets can be purchase at the door.
The doors open at 9:30 a.m.