As the end of the semester comes closer, so do the due dates for final projects. Each student in Jay Hubert’s digital film production class, the digital filmmaking capstone course, is expected to write and direct their own three-to-ten-minute short film. Three students from the course discussed the plots of their projects.
Jacob DeMeyer, a senior Bachelor of Innovations digital filmmaking major, decided to highlight his strengths with his piece “Breaking News Room.” The film is set in a news studio and follows two anchors who have been given the chance to earn a performance-based raise. Their formerly playful relationship descends into fierce competition when they learn that only one of them will be granted a pay bump.
When one of the anchors dies in a car crash during their feud, the remaining anchor must cope with the fact that he had a hand in the death of his friend. His guilt worsens when he learns that he got the raise. Can he justify what he went through to get it?
DeMeyer has more experience on the sport communication side of things, and he chose to structure his film in order to show off his video broadcasting skills. The news studio setting will allow DeMeyer to play to his strengths and set the tone of the film thematically.
Jaxon Fox, a junior digital filmmaking major, chose to make a “Halo” fan film. The film begins with a Spartan super soldier and a team of fighters who launch an attack on a group of rebels in order to obtain an artifact in their possession. The planet they have landed on is in a state of siege from aliens, and the group must decide whether to save the inhabitants of the planet or take the artifact.
The Spartan is the only survivor after an ambush on the troop, and in the midst of combat with a rebel, he discovers he is fighting his own brother. When his brother reveals that the artifact is a bomb, the Spartan learns that he has the opportunity to save the planet after all.
Fox is one of the first student filmmakers at UCCS to be granted permission to use fake weapons in a project, as the rules are typically rigid when using them in that regard. Fox said that he had to prove himself responsible and trustworthy while pitching the idea in order to show that he was able to keep his crew safe. This was the first script he had ever written
, and his second time directing a film. He felt that he couldn’t have done it without such a wonderful film crew. Fox’s completed film will be posted to his YouTube channel, @MistahFox.
Justin Bramman, a senior in the B.I. digital filmmaking major, is making a film titled “Happy Tragedy,” but the title is subject to change before it’s completed. His film tells the story of 16-year-old Billy, who has just stood up to his abusive alcoholic father. Billy’s mom rushes around packing up their things to leave the house while panicking about the living situation she has subjected her son to, while Billy remains in shock about what just happened. The film builds suspense until the final moments where the camera reveals exactly how far Billy’s confrontation with his father went when he decided to defend his mom.
Bramman was inspired by a different short film titled “Nursery Rhymes,” and wanted to show the story of an unlikely hero from a broken “white trash” family. He also said that the course has taught him that you can never know everything there is to know about film production. Even with Bramman’s prior experience in filmmaking courses, Hubert’s realistic class organization continued to teach him just how many pieces go into making your own film. Bramman’s finished film can be found on his website, justinbramman.com.
These films are a few of many productions that will be coming out of the COMM 4270 class this spring, and several will be entering The Bluffs Film Festival. For those interested in seeing the results of the students’ hard work, as well as watching the premiere of season nine of “The Bluffs,” the festival will be hosted at the Ent Center on May 10th from 6-8 p.m.
Photo from unsplash.com.