Busy few days for young film-makers

You may have heard of the 48 Hours film competition, but you probably have not heard of the more lenient 168 and a Bit Hours Film Festival.

Pupils from Columba College in Dunedin have spent the past week creating their own short films to be put on the big screen.

Head of English John Hayden said the school had planned to hold its very first Christmas festival, but plans had to change because of Covid-19.

Instead pupils from years 8, 9 and 10 would celebrate the end of the year by creating films between 90 seconds and three minutes long.

Each film needed to follow a genre assigned by drawing lots from a hat and had to make use of a candlestick as a prop.

The line of dialogue ‘‘It’s all done and dusted’’ also had to be included in the script, he said.

The festival was announced on Wednesday, but with a few days of admin time and a bit of leeway for the pupils it came out to ‘‘a bit more than 168 hours’’.

Films needed to be completed by Monday, whether they were presentable or not.

Filming a scene for the school’s short film festival are Columba College pupils (from left) Emily...
Filming a scene for the school’s short film festival are Columba College pupils (from left) Emily Roy (13), Ellen Riley (13) and Isabella Oakley (12) at the school yesterday. PHOTO: PETER MCINTOSH

Learning the film-making process would be a valuable experience for the pupils even if the final product came out ‘‘a bit rough’’.

Film-making was a difficult art with multiple different aspects, such as script writing, cinematography and editing.

He believed the pupils would remember and be proud of their work no matter what.

The school would screen the films at a special assembly featuring a red carpet and mock paparazzi, he said.

The films would be judged by experienced Dunedin production company Bus Of The Undead, which had a lot of experience with the 48 Hours film competition.

Script writer and actor Poppy Edmond (14) said the production process had been really fun.

Her group’s film was a mock documentary about an alien race of sock puppets.

The project had gone well so far, but there was still a lot to do, she said.




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