Emmaus student film festival, with a monster-movie twist, opens registration for 19th season
- The 19th annual Emmaus Arts Commission Student Film Festival has opened registration, giving students throughout the Lehigh Valley opportunities to make something for the big screen
- A kickoff event will take place at 2 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 24 in Emmaus Community Park's Arts Pavilion
- Organizers say the event serves to make the creation and presentation of art by young people in the community accessible and celebrated
EMMAUS, Pa. — The annual film festival giving young talent in the Lehigh Valley a chance to see their work on the big screen is back, this year with a monstrous twist.
Emmaus Arts Commission's Student Film Festival opened for registration this week, planning to bring middle and high school students' creativity to life at Emmaus Theater for a red-carpet event of screenings and awards.
After sign-up, teams will select their genre from a provided list unveiled at the kickoff Sunday event. In-person signups also will be conducted at the kickoff event.
This year, given that the Oct. 22 finale event runs close to Halloween celebrations, films must include one from a list of classic film monsters and characters: Wolf person, Frankenstein, Bride of Frankenstein, Mummy, Creature from the Black Lagoon and Phantom of the Opera.
Filmmaker teams will be assigned a line of dialogue and one of the characters to be incorporated into the film. An identifiable shot referencing or including Emmaus also must be included in visuals or dialogue.
Forms for teams to enter must be completed and submitted by Oct. 8. The festival costs $15 to enter.
Participants will have until Oct. 15 to complete their films.
"Just having that opportunity in the community, I think is really important. Something to give them an avenue to be creative, and to see their stuff on a big screen, I think, is really important."Emmaus Arts Commission Student Film Festival Chairman Wayne Lawler
Organizers note a big goal of the festival is to make the creation and presentation of art by young people in the community accessible and celebrated.
"Just having that opportunity in the community, I think is really important," event Chairman Wayne Lawler said. "Something to give them an avenue to be creative, and to see their stuff on a big screen, I think, is really important."
They note schools in the region have varying resources, from full programs to limited opportunities, for learning film and visual arts. She said that in the past, the festival has been host to very experienced groups as well as those creating films like this for the first time.
Emmaus Arts Commission, a self-funded group of volunteers appointed by the borough, uses the event and partnerships involved as a fundraiser for its efforts throughout the year.
Kickoff event to give resources, mentorship
Organizers say all interested or registered participants should attend the kickoff party at Emmaus Community Park's Arts Pavilion at 2 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 24.
They say it will include local professionals in the industry and DeSales University students in film and television who will be available to provide mentorships for the teams.
"We're hoping this really helps to move those students toward other opportunities in the community, and also opens their eyes to film and the industrial arts that are available in Lehigh Valley for them to pursue in college, if that's something that they really like,"Lindsay Kleinberg, acting president of the Emmaus Arts Commission
"We're hoping this really helps to move those students toward other opportunities in the community, Emmaus Arts Commission Acting President Lindsey Kleinberg said.
"And also opens their eyes to film and the industrial arts that are available in Lehigh Valley for them to pursue in college, if that's something that they really like."
Kleinberg said in prior years they had upwards of 140 students participating in a given year throughout the region.
Finale event scheduled for late October
The screening of submitted films will take place at 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 22 at Emmaus Theater, followed by an awards ceremony.
Organizers describe the event as a red carpet, semi-formal event with presenters who work in the media industry.
The premiere will be open to the public, with a general admission cost for all in attendance, with registered participants getting a free ticket for the movie premiere.
Run time for middle school entries is two to three minutes, while high school entries are to run three to five minutes.
Following the screening, awards will be given in categories such as best direction, best acting, best editing, best use of sound, best costume/makeup, best writing and best use of visual effects.