A unique project called iMovieFest has just concluded at Emory University in Atlanta, GA — and it had lots of freshmen making desktop movies.
Over 40 first-year residence halls came together to create desktop movies using Macs, digital camcorders, and Apple’s iMovie 2 software. The Apple Student Core group at the university provided training in movie making. During the week of iMovieFest, students filmed and edited their own movies, which you can check out for yourself at the iMovieFest Web site. And over 800 students and faculty showed up to catch the showing of the best original short films created for the festival and to se the top three filmmaking teams win prizes.
“They learned how to use iMovie to powerfully communicate, plus they had fun as they worked as a team with other students from their hall,” David Roemer, president of the Apple Student Core group at Emory, told MacCentral. “The creativity demonstrated in just a five-day span was amazing. Now, the technology is available for students to make movies for classes, student groups, and more.”
MovieFest was the brainchild of David Roemer, an Emory business school student who made his first digital movies in 2000 using a compact DV camera and iMovie. Impressed by how much fun he had in the process, David thought that his fellow students might enjoy creating their own movies, as well.
So, according to an Apple Hot News story, he decided to stage a campus film festival comprised of short iMovies that teams of students would shoot and edit. He structured the competition so that students on each of the 42 undergraduate residence floors could submit one iMovie, which meant that they had to collaborate with their hall mates to make their films. Roemer was helped in the endeavor by his friend, Dan Costa, a resident advisor at Emory who shares David’s interest in computers.
Each iMovie the students submitted could be up to five minutes long and could cover any subject. But all the contest participants had only five days to make a complete desktop movie. At the end of the five days, students from 31 out of 42 residence hall floors submitted iMovies to the team of independent judges, which included a professor of film studies, an administrator from Campus Life, two people from the Multimedia Center and four students.
“Subjects ranged from the humorous to the thoughtful,” said the Apple Hot News story. “One film dealt with a hapless resident assistant who tries in vain to get students involved in group projects. Another hall made a mini-documentary about racism on campus by watching how groups behaved in the cafeteria and asking some of the students to express their views on racial segregation. One group traveled downtown to the Atlanta courthouse to film and interview people who were protesting the modification of the Georgia state flag. The winning iMovie spoofed classic scenes from big-screen feature films including Cast Away, The Matrix, Forrest Gump, The Perfect Storm, and Pulp Fiction.”
A sequel is in the works for 2002, with plans to expand the festival to include iMovies made by upperclassmen.