Studio47, a Pomona College Club where student filmmakers can connect with each other and gain support for their film projects, originally started out as a place where students could rent film equipment.
Over the last year, however, the members have started trying to produce films as well. During Reading Days, May 9 and 10, the club is planning to screen the films they have produced this past year. Two films, written and directed this semester by members Andy Biekert PO ’16 and Reid Mitchell PO ’16, will be screened. A third film, directed in the fall of 2012 by Allegra Breedlove SC ’15, will also be screened.
The three films are shorts that deal with the experiences of undergraduate students.
“Because of the actors that we have access to, it’s easier to write about college students. But if we wanted to, we could, of course, branch out,” Mitchell said.
Mitchell’s film is titled Blackout.
“It is about a guy who got blackout drunk at a party, and his girlfriend breaks up with him as a result. There are some twists in the plot,” Mitchell said.
Biekert’s film is titled Maxwell’s Demon and deals with the struggle between science and spirituality.
“Basically it’s a sci-fi drama about two research students who accidentally discover a perpetual motion machine. Psychologically, they get a rift between them because they don’t know what to do with it [the machine]. One of them has a more spiritual reaction, and the other one is more practical about it. So the film is about how they react to the situation differently,” Biekert said.
Breedlove’s film, titled Just a Minute, addresses the question of mortality.
“It’s about a girl in her dorm room, and death comes knocking on her door. The film is a conversation between the girl and the personification of death through her door. It is quite interesting,” Mitchell said.
The student directors expressed their feelings that people are often intimidated by the filmmaking process. Because of this, one of the goals of Studio47 is to encourage and excite more people about filmmaking.
“My philosophy is that we need to educate as many people as we can. Then, fewer people will feel intimidated about making a movie,” Mitchell said.
Biekert agreed and said that he enjoyed the filmmaking experience.
“I think this semester is about getting experience because [Mitchell and I] are both freshmen. The club is trying to build itself up, so it will be nice to have a spread of knowledgeable people to take up their own projects in the future. That’s our goal,” Biekert said.
They are trying to achieve their objective by giving their crew a variety of experiences.
“The people who I was working with had some experience. Some knew editing, and some had held a broom light before. But I think what was really helpful was that we rotated positions. The more people that can have that baseline knowledge of all the things that are required to go into making a movie, the more movies we will end up producing,” Mitchell said.
The club is eager to increase its member base to increase film productions next semester.
“Anyone can show up. We meet at 5:45 on Mondays in the basement of Clark V. It’s open to everybody!” Mitchell said.