A few weeks ago, filmmaker Dane Clark (Long Branch, January 2013 screening) contacted me in order to introduce me to his friend Tara Woodbury. Tara is the director of a really interesting program for young filmmakers called the CityLife Film Project. It’s an intensive multi-month workshop for “disadvantaged youth” from 18-25 to help them tell their stories and build towards careers in film, television and other creative industries. The culmination of the program is that the ten participants write, shoot, and edit three short films, chosen from their ten individual pitches.
With the demise of the Worldwide Short Film Festival, Tara needed a way for the students to see more short films, so she asked me to put together a selection of films and come in to talk to them. Since they’re in the early part of the program now, focussed on screenwriting, I brought a few films where the writing was strong enough that the film could get away with one location or very simple cinematography.
Although I never feel like much of an “expert,” I did have a previous life as a teacher, and I have to say I probably got more out of answering their many questions than they did. It was inspiring to see such a motivated and hungry group of creative young people and I’m now eager to follow their progress as they are molded into filmmakers. So, a big thanks to Tara and to the students for having me there.
You can find out more about CityLife and how to support their program on their web site.