WA festival boost for young filmmakers

The upcoming Uni Goonies Film Festival aims to encourage more students to pursue a career in film and persuade students to join screen arts courses after high school.

University and TAFE students across Western Australia will get a chance to show their short films at the festival, which will take place for the first time on November 17.

The festival—run by students – aims to promote filmmaking from young directors and encourage them to join the industry professionally.

Uni Goonies Film Festival director Luisa Mitchell said she was confident the festival would provide career opportunities for the future.

“This festival is really unique because it strives to give more career opportunities in the long-term for students that both run the festival and those that submit films to it,” she said.

Curtin University screen arts senior lecturer Michelle Johnston was hopeful awareness would be created for screen arts courses in the wake of decreased course enrolments across WA universities.

“Potential students who are passionate about filmmaking will undoubtedly be looking at a festival like this to help with their choices for study,” she said.

Revelation Film Festival director Richard Sowada hoped the festival would persuade young people to join screen arts courses.

“Studying film can give you exposure to the traditions of cinema in a compact and defined way,” he said.

“The onus is on the individual to live and breathe film.”

Ms Mitchell hoped the festival would encourage students about to enter university to enrol in film-related courses by inviting high school students to the festival.

“We are inviting a very lucky group of students from a Perth high school to attend our festival, in the hopes that they will see why choosing a film career can be so rewarding,” she said.

The festival will also aim to raise social issues affecting youth and promote Indigenous filmmaking.

“Our Fountain of Youth category hopes to bring light to certain issues that only young people face, that aren’t talked about enough,” Ms Mitchell said.

“Our ‘Black Out Films’ category is there specifically to give Indigenous filmmakers a chance to shine and make our industry more diverse.

“I hope we can connect to that audience in a way that other people haven’t been able to before.”

Mr Sowada said it was important to see where new voices in film were being tested.

“If one person goes on to make a better film—or better still go on into a career—because of one small moment at this festival then it would have done the trick,” he said.

Dr Johnston believed the festival would help increase the confidence of directors who aimed to show their work publicly.

“It is important for our students to see what other filmmakers are doing,” she said.

“A festival such as this helps create a sense of community for young filmmakers.”

Despite being wholly student run, the festival will be attended by industry professionals who hope to find young talent wanting to enter the Australian film industry.

“The more you and your name appears the wider you cast the net,” Mr Sowada said.

“Filmmakers need to turn up…you never know who you might meet.”

The festival aims to solidify Perth as a viable place to study film.

“It will be one small step towards making Perth and WA an exciting place to make and celebrate film,” Ms Mitchell said.




Categories: Arts