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Posts tagged with High School Film Competition

Full Results of the Pilot Team High School Film Competition

Team High School Film CompetitionFive schools. Six categories. One theme.

A new extension of the Heartland Film Festival High School Film Competition, the inaugural Team High School Film Competition challenged five teams of students from local high schools to create a three-minute film aligning with a theme (“passion vs. apathy”) that meets Heartland’s mission to promote positive change in people’s lives through the transformative power of film.

Beyond the theme, the film had to contain a character (either a Senior who is a varsity athlete but won’t play sports in college, a Junior who is struggling with grades and dislikes school, or a Freshman who has the highest GPA in their class but has not had to work very hard to get their grades yet) and a prop (an orange).

Participating schools included:
- Carmel High School
- Decatur Central High School
- Herron High School
- Lawrence North High School
- Pike High School

Team High School Film Competition

On Saturday, May 19, students from all five schools gathered at Pike Performing Arts Center to participate in a workshop, see their films on the big screen, and collect their awards.

The workshop, “How Can We Improve Our Film Creation Process,” was led by Andie Redwine, the writer/producer of Paradise Recovered (2010 Heartland Film Festival Official Selection). After the workshop, Andie teamed up with two other judges to view and critique the students’ films: Thomas Lewis (a filmmaker, video artist and photographer who teaches video production in Media Arts and Science at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis), and Sandy Pagano, a Heartland Film Festival screener and Truly Moving Picture Award Jury volunteer.

Roberts Camera is the Official Provider for the Heartland Film Festival High School Film Competitiion

After thoughtful consideration, the judges presented awards across six categories:

1st Place (Prize: Trophy and Roberts Camera gift certificate)
Winner: Carmel High School – Rotating Clock
A film about a frustrated student and a distracted guidance counselor that sets up the future where history does not repeat itself.

Carmel High School - 1st Place



2nd Place (Prize: Prize: Trophy and Roberts Camera gift certificate)
Winner: Lawrence North High School – Passion
A film about an aspiring baseball player, who on the verge of signing his letter of intent decides to follow his passion and instead become a ping pong player.

2nd Place - Lawrence North High School



3rd Place (Prize: Prize: Trophy and Roberts Camera gift certificate)
Winner: Carmel High School – Expectations
A film about a girl choosing between her passions of a future in soccer or culinary school.

3rd Place - Carmel High School



Best Use of Character (Prize: Trophy)
Winner: Lawrence North High School – Passion
A film about an aspiring baseball player, who on the verge of signing his letter of intent decides to follow his passion and instead become a ping pong player.

2nd Place - Lawrence North High School


Best Application of Theme (Prize: Trophy)
Winner: Decatur Central High School – A Small Gesture
A film about and athlete who has lost her passion only to have it restored through a small act of kindness.

Decatur Central High School


Best Application of Prop
Winner: Herron High School – Blue

Herron High School


Congratulations to all the winners! The top three films will be shown during the High School Film Festival grouping at the Heartland Film Festival in the fall.

Roberts Camera is the Official Provider for the Heartland Film Festival High School Film Competitiion

Thank you to Roberts Camera, the official provider for the Heartland High School Film Competitions.

Call for Entries: High School Film Competition Submission Deadline July 1

The Team Competition may have been a local event, but the Heartland Film Festival High School Film Competition is open to all high school student short films and is still accepting submissions! Hurry, the deadline is July 1!

High School Film Competition Underway!

We’ve recently started to get our High School Film Competition submissions. The competition is definitely tight! But the deadline hasn’t arrived yet, and we want to remind everyone if they haven’t sent their film in yet, that they should definitely start thinking about it. The deadline is June 1st, 2012. Everyone at Heartland can’t wait to see what all of you have come up with!

Need a little inspiration? Check out the 2011 HSFC Grand Prize winner, Sacrifices of My Father:

High School Film Competition Official Selections: One Small Step & Independence In Sight

This post is one in a series of posts highlighting our High School Film Competition winners and official selections. Heartland Institute intern Patrick Mitchell introduces us to each filmmaker and gives a sneak peek of what to expect when these films premiere at the 2011 Heartland Film Festival Friday, October 14.

One Small Step – Nick Heighway

Nick Heighway brought to us what stands to be one of the most technically sound contributions in our Heartland High School Film Competition. Both visually stunning and thoroughly compelling, One Small Step is a period piece that takes a look back at the tragic Challenger launch through the eyes of Tim, an aspiring astronaut. His big dreams of space travel are ultimately stunted by his small town surroundings. Tim’s parents and friends put pressure on him to pursue college in the wake of the Challenger explosion, but Tim is still headstrong in his ambitions to be an astronaut. Speaking strictly from a technical perspective, the film makes great use of foreshadowing through the use of editing techniques and flashforward sequences. The film’s excellent production quality is second only to it’s message of courage and determination, especially in the face of adversity. Of course “courage” is our theme for this year’s competition, and One Small Step fully meets the criteria of the 2011 theme. Nick’s vision is incredibly potent, especially for those of whom have ever faced a crossroads in their life where idealistic passions were met with realistic concerns.

This is Nick Heighway’s second year in Heartland. A senior at Lawrence North High School, he has twice participated in the 48 Hour Film Project. He interned in L.A. with Union Editorial. He wants to be a professional film director.

Nick Heighway

Independence in Sight – Lauren Lindberg

We are honored to present to you one of only three documentaries selected for our High School Film Competition. Lauren Lindberg’s Independence in Sight takes a look at the trials and tribulations of a group of visually impaired young people as they strive to achieve more independence. The Hatlen Center is a residential transition program for the blind and visually impaired and the primary focus of the film. The instant connection felt between the kids as they interact in their new environment is truly heartwarming. The interviews are an insightful look at an ability most people take for granted. The courage exhibited by these young people to seek independence despite a disability that most would find to be a terrifying experience is incredibly inspiring. The residents of The Hatlen Center face real life problems in a controlled environment in order to take step towards living on their own. The film begins and ends on the same note, a blacked out screen with a voiceover which serves as a means of meaningful perspective for the viewer.

Lauren Lindberg is a 17-year old Senior at Monte Vista High School in Danville, CA. She is an avid cheerleader and documentary filmmaker. She will attend Chapman University in the Fall to pursue her filmmaking interests.

Lauren Lindberg

High School Film Competition Official Selections: Shades of Gray & The Gift

This post is one in a series of posts highlighting our High School Film Competition winners and official selections.  Heartland Institute intern Patrick Mitchell introduces us to each filmmaker and gives a sneak peek of what to expect when these films premiere at the 2011 Heartland Film Festival Friday, October 14.

Shades of Gray – Laura Baker & Samantha DeMaria

As part of Heartland’s 2011 theme of “courage”, the duo of Laura Baker & Samantha DeMaria brought to us their emotional take on undergoing personal tragedy. Entitled Shades of Gray, the film uses color (or lack their of) as a literal representation of the lead girl’s state of being. Her life is physically and emotionally in a perpetual state of gloom, where all she sees and experiences are limitless shades of gray. The film is shot juxtaposing black and white shots with splashes of dispersed color. Due to unexplained reasons, the girl has immersed herself in a world void of color and consequently, happiness. Yet, through a series of seemingly uninspired conversations with a well-meaning boy, the girl eventually finds the courage to break her cycle of despair and live her life in a more positive manner. His positivity radiates color, and as a result of her new found friendship, the girl’s courage is marked by a splash of rejuvenated color as well. Despite being an unaccountable personal tragedy, the film manages to be universally relatable. It’s message of staying positive through inexplicable adversity is something everyone will be able to find strength in.

Laura Baker and Samantha DeMaria, from Carmel, Indiana, graduated from Carmel High School in 2011. In high school they studied IB Film under the direction of Jim Peterson. Laura and Samantha will both be attending Columbia College Chicago this fall.

Laura Baker

Samantha DeMaria

The Gift – Ryan Bowman

In one of the more heart-wrenching selections in the Heartland High School Film Competition, Ryan Bowman submitted to us his film, The Gift. Our 2011 theme of “courage” for this year’s competition was met with a slew of worthy competitors, but none quite as intense as Ryan’s film. As the title would suggest, the film deals with the gift of life and the struggle to choose what’s best for, not only oneself, but for a child who hasn’t been brought into the world yet as well. The plot details that of a young couple who recently find out they will be new parents soon. As part of this joyous occasion comes heartbreaking news as well, as the unborn child is diagnosed with trisomy 21, also known as down syndrome. The couple find themselves at a personal crossroads as they debate the fate of their child. The decision to go through with an abortion or to birth the child weighs heavily on the two young people. I won’t give away the ending, but instead will reveal that the couple ultimately agrees upon a courageous decision. The film is full of heart and moreover brimming with passionate vigor. It’s noble to see a young filmmaker tackling such controversial adult issues with such passion.

Ryan, from Zionsville, IN, attends APU in Los Angeles studying Business/ Film.Ryan participated in film at school and as a Media Intern at Eagle Church. Ryan thanks Heartland for letting him show The Gift at such an honored festival.

Ryan Bowman

High School Film Competition Official Selections: Focus & Always Sprinkle Pepper

This post is one in a series of posts highlighting our High School Film Competition winners and official selections. Heartland Institute intern Patrick Mitchell introduces us to each filmmaker and gives a sneak peek of what to expect when these films premiere at the 2011 Heartland Film Festival Friday, October 14.

Focus – Dylan Sullivan

One of the more abstract films in the Heartland High School Film Competition was submitted to us by Dylan Sullivan. His interpretation of our 2011 theme, “Courage”, is certainly the most universal in terms of its overall appeal. Dylan speaks to all of own fears and insecurities, boldly proclaiming at the start of the film, “My name is Dylan and I don’t have courage”. At one point or another in all our lives, we must dig deep down and find the courage to do something, no matter how menial or grandiose the situation may be. As the title would suggest, the film focuses on what courage is and how its interpretation may be perceived differently depending on the person. Yet, one constant still remains, the ability to be shaped by one’s own courageousness. Somewhere in the scuffle to pin down the identity of courage, Focus comes to a proud conclusion. You’ll just have to wait and find out what that realization is.

Dylan has been creating films for 2 years now. Besides making films he enjoys theatre and has a passion for the big screen. He currently lives in Aurora, CO and hopes to pursue his passion after his senior year.

Dylan Sullivan

Always Sprinkle Pepper – Evan Trout

A retelling of a classic Shel Silverstein poem, Always Sprinkle Pepper is a stunning piece of cinematic art. The film has all the energetic spirit of an aspiring high school filmmaker coupled with the eerily dark humor unique to Silverstein. The film is void of all dialogue, aside from the recital of the poem itself. In turn, Always Sprinkle Pepper relies heavily upon it’s imagery, which is absolutely stunning to say the least. If I weren’t aware that this was a High School Film Competition, I would be convinced that this was executed by a seasoned filmmaker. Being a fan of Shel Silverstein myself, I felt as if he would be proud of how his work is represented here. It’s refreshingly whimsical and playfully ominous at the same time. The cinematography is brilliantly executed, as is the attention to detail in terms of the use of lighting as well. Always Sprinkle Pepper is a true strand out in this year’s High School Film Competition.

By creating short films that are dialogue free, Evan challenges himself to focus on visual story telling. His public service announcements that highlight teenage social issues have won multiple competitions. Evan has received a full scholarship and is attending the International Academy of Film and Television where he is pursuing a career in cinematography.

Evan Trout

California Teen Takes High School Film Competition Top Prize!

I am so very proud to announce the winners and official selection filmmakers of the 2011 Heartland High School Film Competition. These fine filmmakers represent the 2011 theme Courage through many different lenses. With winners and official selection filmmakers representing five different states and ten different cities, we see that young filmmakers with amazing talent are everywhere. Their resources differ, but their desire to tell meaningful stories is the same.

Official Selection Honorees:

Always Sprinkle Pepper directed by Evan Trout of Fishers, Indiana
Focus directed by Dylan Sullivan of Aurora, Colorado
Independence in Sight directed by Lauren Lindberg of Danville, California
One Small Step directed by Nicholas Heighway of Indianapolis, Indiana
Shades of Gray directed by Laura Baker and Samantha DeMaria of Carmel, Indiana
The Gift directed by Ryan Bowman of Whitestown, Indiana

Winners:

(__) directed by Chad Werner of Fort Worth, Texas
Soap directed by Jon Sheets of Valparaiso, Indiana
You Walk I Glide directed by Joel Rosales of Fontana, California
The 36 directed by Nic Weinfeld of Silver Spring, Maryland

Grand Prize Winner:

Sacrifices of My Father directed by Miguel Lopez of Fontana, California

Miguel Lopez graduated from A.B. Miller High School in Fontana, Calif. this spring and says of winning this award:

“I’ve never been outside of California so this opportunity to travel by plane to Indiana is really special for me. I never knew what I wanted to do with my life until I met Mr. Lee my Freshman year of high school. He taught me about the power of film and it’s influence within our society. I believe, without a doubt, that I will pursue … the power of film to celebrate the average man. Everybody has a story. Whether it be of struggle, talent, joy, it’s important that these stories be heard. The power of film allows us to connect with society and touch many hearts.

As soon as I got the phone call stating that I won the Grand Prize for the Heartland High School Film Competition my heart started racing and the first thing that came to mind was ‘Is this a dream? This isn’t happening…’ I was overwhelmed by the idea that my father’s film was acknowledged by such a renowned organization.”

Miguel’s enthusiasm for Heartland, for filmmaking and for powerful stories is exciting to say the least. We are honored to have Miguel and his teacher Mr. Lee as our guests at the Heartland Film Festival this October and to have Sacrifices of My Father play as part of the High School Film Competition Collection. Miguel’s film defines the courage that a father has to support his family and the courage a son has to embrace his father’s story and make sure that it is heard.

Stay tuned for more details about the rest of the winners and official selection filmmakers as we highlight each one leading up to their films playing in the Heartland High School Film Competition Collection during the Heartland Film Festival.

Official Press Release: Heartland Truly Moving Pictures Announces Winners in Second Annual High School Film Competition (pdf)

Celebrate Creativity in Filmmaking with Heartland at CREATEfest

At Heartland we take pride in thinking creatively about everything we do. And as an arts organization we hold other people’s creativity in high esteem. Creativity is what fuels us and that’s why we are honored to be part of CREATEfest at Lawrence North High School in Indianapolis on March 15, 2011 at 7:30 p.m.

CREATfest engages audiences of diverse ages and backgrounds, and seeks to creatively reveal everybody’s abilities, talents and energies. Heartland’s presentation will focus on creativity in filmmaking and will feature screenings of select 2010 Heartland Highschool Film Competition official selections and award-winners. A discussion with three of our local 2010 High School Film Competition filmmakers about their creative processes will follow.

Nick Heighway
, Out of the Box
Olivia Huntley, Por le Facteur (For the Mailman)
Evan Trout, Lady and the Champ

Please help us celebrate creativity at this unique event.

Creativity in Filmmaking
Lawrence North High School
7802 Hague Road
Indianapolis, IN 46256-1799
March 15  @ 7:30 p.m.

High School Filmmaker Profile: Luke Broyles Honors Friendship Through Film

This blog post is one in a series, which documents the experiences of the High School Film Competition Award-winning filmmakers as well as those High School Film Competition official selection filmmakers at the 2010 Heartland Film Festival. The 2010 Heartland High School Film Competition theme was Hope. The 2011 Call for Entries opens January 15, 2011 and the theme is Courage.

When we started sifting through the 2010 Heartland High School Film Competition submissions, we were surprised to find such a powerful and well-made film from an 11-year-old. Luke Broyles’ film Michael is a well-crafted and wonderful examination of friendship and we were honored to have it play as an Official Selection in the High School Film Competition Program during the 2010 Heartland Film Festival.

Heartland wasn’t alone in honoring this tremendous film. Michael also received an honorable mention at the DocUtah International Documentary Film Festival, both the Judges Award and Audience Award at the REEL Teens Film Festival held in the Catskills of New York and Michael also played as an official selection in the Louisville International Festival of Film, the Durango International Film Festival in Colorado and the George Lindsey UNA Film Festival in Alabama. It’s been a big year for Luke and for Michael.

But with all these outstanding film festival honors, I think those of us at Heartland are most impressed with the non-festival awards Luke has been receiving for Michael. Luke will be receiving the Schemmel Award from the Cerebral Palsy Association of Greater Indiana at their annual awards dinner. The Schemmel Award is an annual in honor of an individual or organization that promotes ethics and understanding of those with disabilities.  Last year’s recipient was Jason Fishburn, honored Indy police officer.

Additionally, several local schools are also showing Michael at all-school assemblies over the next two months. These schools are showing Luke’s film as a way to help students think about understanding and befriending others who are different from them. This is the exactly the power we at Heartland believe films can have to help engage, educate and inspire!

It seems Luke is never without his camera or a story brewing and we can’t wait to see what he does next!

Watch Luke’s film, Michael:

High School Filmmaker Profile: Evan Trout’s 2010 HFF Experience Hypes Him Up for the Future

This blog post is one in a series, which documents the experiences of the High School Film Competition Award-winning filmmakers as well as those High School Film Competition official selection filmmakers at the 2010 Heartland Film Festival. The 2010 Heartland High School Film Competition theme was Hope. The 2011 Call for Entries open January 15, 2011 and the theme is Courage.

Evan Trout answers an audience member's question following a screening of his film Lady and the Champ at the 2010 Heartland Film Festival

It was amazing to have so many out-of-state students at the 2010 Heartland Film Festival with their winning entries for the Heartland High School Film Competition. However, we felt really lucky to have a local Finalist in the mix as well. Evan Trout (Lady and the Champ), an Indianapolis resident now in his senior year, was able to enjoy the entire Heartland experience. From Opening Night to Closing he was at each event and as many screenings as he could take in. And what we liked about him was the fact he knew how to take advantage of the experience, networking with other filmmakers and being emboldened to follow his future path as a filmmaker.

Evan shares his experience at the 2010 Heartland Film Festival through being awarded a Finalist in the High School Film Competition.

The general experience with Heartland was just plain amazing. I felt like the Heartland staff were working really hard to make everyone happy and you guys succeeded. I just enjoyed being a part of the whole process and seeing everything happen from behind stage. Even though we were just high school kids, we were still treated with as much respect as the professional filmmakers were.

I really liked how the film festival is focused on the filmmaker. I guess for me, it just kind of made me feel pretty legit. Being exposed to all of the other films really hyped me up about being a filmmaker. Seeing all of the other films also made me realize the importance of not just a well put together story, but a well put together meaningful story.

We can’t wait to have Evan back at the 2011 Heartland Film Festival, whether as an award-winner or just another amazing filmmaker making the most of what Heartland has to offer!

High School Filmmaker Profile: Regina Nicholson’s Next Project is on the Horizon!

This blog post is one in a series, which documents the experiences of the High School Film Competition Award-winning filmmakers as well as those High School Film Competition official selection filmmakers at the 2010 Heartland Film Festival. The 2010 Heartland High School Film Competition theme was Hope. The 2011 Call for Entries open January 15, 2011 and the theme is Courage.

Regina Nicholson

Regina Nicholson, student filmmaker from California, shares her remarkable battle with rare cancer Osteosarcoma in her documentary short, Glimpse of Horizon. This personal film not only take audiences on Reggie’s journey with her, but shows just how courageous this teenager is.

While we were  sad to not have Reggie with us at the 2010 Festival, we’ve been so lucky to stay in touch with her since she became one of the four Finalists in our High School Film Competition. Through emails with Reggie and her mother Mary, as well as thanks to the connectivity of Facebook, we’ve been staying up-to-date on all the goings on in Reggie’s life.

We just learned that Reggie got her Make-A-Wish a few weeks ago. She got to spend three days on the set of one of her favorite director’s newest movie and was able to shoot one of the scenes from the film! We also learned about The Reggie Project, a new film directed by Henry Corra, with Reggie, documenting Reggie’s battle with Osteosarcoma. The Reggie Project needs a minimum of 5,000 followers of the film on Facebook by the end of the year to qualify for a grant to help cover the cost of the film and it’s promotion. With 1,200 followers already they are well on their way to reaching their goal, but they still have a ways to go.

It’s tremendous to see that even during one of the most trying events of her life Reggie is still behind the camera and documenting life. She really embodies how enriching and energizing the arts can be!

Announcing High School Film Competition Official Selections!

Claire Norton, Director of Heartland Institute

It’s official.

We have an amazing High School Film Competition Program set for the 2010 Heartland Film Festival. We knew it was going to be great as we started receiving submissions, but now that the program is all in place we can’t help but sit back and smile.

As the 19th annual Heartland Film Festival grows near, we can’t wait to meet those student filmmakers who are making the trek to Indianapolis to be a part of the High School Film Competition Program. Grand Prize winner John Gordon, Dallas, TX, who will be in attendance as a guest of Heartland for his film, Clay says of his selection in our competition:

When I received the call to inform me that I had won, my heart was beating at the speed of light, I felt extremely ecstatic, and I was glad that my work had been recognized. …I was truly humbled by the experience and I give extreme thanks to the festival …. I plan on saving the money for a future professional short film I hope to make either during college or immediately after.

In addition to John, other finalists in the High School Film Competition will be receiving prizes and recognition: Sarah Johnson, Matthews, NC (I am Afraid); Melody Miller, Canyon, CA, (A Hat, Some Change, and a Shoe) Regina Nicholson, Long Beach, CA (Glimpse of Horizon); Evan Trout, Fishers, IN (Lady and the Champ).

But it doesn’t stop there. We have even more high school filmmakers to highlight.

It wouldn’t be a well-rounded program without highlighting our official selections. With the amazing talent we encountered in this first year of judging it was hard to make our selections. We couldn’t simply highlight the five winners – we expanded the program by adding six Official Selections.

Luke Broyles, Westfield, IN (Michael); Sam Evenson, Greentown, IN (The Picture Box); Nicholas Heighway, Indianapolis, IN (Out of the Box); Olivia Huntley, Indianapolis, IN (Pour le Facteur [For the Mailman]); Richard Mattox, Tallahassee, FL (Chicken Little); Cheffy Thomas, Carmel, IN (Death Becomes Him);

When can I see this amazing collection of films that embody what HOPE means to the next generation of filmmakers, you ask?

HSFC Program Screenings at Heartland FF
Date Screening Theater
15-Oct 5:45pm Castleton AMC 14
17-Oct 5:15pm Showplace AMC 17
20-Oct 6:00pm Castleton AMC 14
21-Oct 7:30pm Showplace AMC 17

Come on out and join the fun as we celebrate these emerging talents alongside all the other amazing folks who are going to be out in full force at the 2010 Heartland Film Festival. They deserve your support. They are the face of filmmaking to come. We’ll see you at the festival!

Announcing the Winners of Heartland’s First High School Film Competition

Heartland Truly Moving Pictures announced the winners of the inaugural Heartland High School Film Competition today, honoring aspiring, young filmmakers from across the country.

Grand Prize winner John Gordon of Dallas, Texas took top honors with his film Clay. Gordon’s short film embodies the 2010 Competition’s theme of HOPE and tells the story of a boy trapped in the rubble after the Jan. 12, 2010 Haitian earthquake. By recalling happy memories, the boy strives to hold onto hope in order to stay alive.

“My short film takes place during the traumatic event of the Haitian earthquake, and was made to instill a quiet sense of hope in the audience,” said the now 18-year-old Gordon, who was a senior in high school when he made the film. “When I received the call to inform me that I had won, my heart was beating at the speed of light…and I was glad that my work had been recognized.”

As the Grand Prize winner, Gordon will be awarded $2,500, paid travel and accommodations for him and one parent/guardian to attend the 2010 Heartland Film Festival, along with two FEST Passes to the 2010 Heartland Film Festival where Clay will be screened as part of the Heartland High School Film Competition shorts program. He will also be honored onstage during the 2010 Heartland Film Festival Awards Gala.

Gordon, who is now enrolled in the Film program at Full Sail University in Winter Park, Fla., plans to save the money he won to make another short film during college or immediately following.

“We believe that the best way to encourage young filmmakers is to provide them with opportunities and resources,” said Jeffrey L. Sparks, president and CEO of Heartland Truly Moving Pictures. “That’s exactly what the Heartland High School Film Competition does: it provides the opportunity for aspiring filmmakers to showcase their work that displays integrity and heart, and it rewards them with the financial resources necessary for them to continue pursuing their dreams.”

Other winners include the four finalists: Regina Nicholson of Long Beach, Calif. (Glimpse of Horizon), Sarah Johnson of Matthews, N.C. (I am Afraid), Melody C. Miller of Canyon, Calif. (A Hat, Some Change and a Shoe) and Evan Trout of Fishers, Ind. (Lady and the Champ).

Johnson, Miller, Nicholson and Trout will each be awarded $500 and two FEST Passes to the 2010 Heartland Film Festival where their films will be screened as part of the Heartland High School Film Competition shorts program. They will also receive recognition during the 2010 Heartland Film Festival Awards Gala.

During Heartland’s inaugural High School Film Competition, aspiring high school filmmakers were given four months to concept, shoot and edit their own 10-minute film that embodied the 2010 theme: HOPE. The competition was open to all currently enrolled high school students who had not graduated prior to the spring of 2010. Film submissions were judged on criteria similar to that of the Heartland Film Festival, including artistic excellence, technical merit and representation of Heartland’s organizational values such as: hope, integrity, tolerance and courage.

Winners’ films will be screened as part of the Heartland High School Film Competition shorts program during the 2010 Heartland Film Festival, Oct. 14-23 in Indianapolis, Ind. The complete schedule of films and special events will be announced Sept. 23. Tickets go on sale Sept. 24. For additional information, visit HeartlandFilmFestival.org.

The 2011 Heartland High School Film Competition theme is COURAGE. The call for entries will open Jan. 15, 2011.

Young Filmmakers Give Us Hope

Claire Norton, Director of the Heartland Institute

Claire Norton, Director of the Heartland Institute

While the winners of the first ever Heartland High School Film Competition have not yet been announced, the process has been a remarkable one and we’d be remiss not to share.

As the 2010 HHSFC Call for Entries came to a close, I sat at my desk and eagerly watched the number of student film submissions increase. As the films piled up, I got more and more excited to dig in and watch each second of every student film. After watching them all wide-eyed, I’m happy to say that the results of this competition are going to blow you away.

In the inaugural year of the HHSFC, we couldn’t have asked for a better turnout. Aspiring student filmmakers from 10 states and Canada answered our call to create films that embodied the theme of “Hope” and embraced the Heartland mission.

As our jury works its way through evaluating the films, not only are we enjoying learning what “Hope” means to a diverse set of young filmmakers, but we are realizing the tremendous talent that is ever-present among these youth. Their stories are bold, their ideas impressive and their desire and ability to create a well-told tale are admirable.

Through this competition we at Heartland are being reaffirmed in our belief that the future of filmmaking is bright and “Hope” is a lot more than just a theme. Hope is a sentiment shared by today’s youth, no matter what their situation. Whether it’s hope for their communities, hope for those people they have never met, or hope and belief that their future is going to be bright, the importance of “Hope” isn’t lost on a single young person.

Make sure you take time to come see what “Hope” means to the next generation at the 2010 Heartland Film Festival where the award-winning films will be screened and stay tuned for the winners to be announced in August.

-Claire Norton, Director of the Heartland Institute