DU Film Club Kicks off a New Year
After over two years of trying to connect with burned-out students on Zoom, DU’s student organizations are finally feeling an upswing in engagement as life starts to fall back into more familiar rhythms. DU’s Film Production Club has more members than ever and its board has big plans for the future.
The Film Production Club is now entering its fourth year on campus. Students from any major are invited to join weekly to talk about films, learn about filmmaking, and become a part of a production team that creates short films from start to finish — no experience required. While the finished projects have not typically been available to the public, this year they have been posted on YouTube.
This quarter, the club is working on a 72 hour horror film challenge. The club members met to brainstorm concepts for the spooky challenge and chose 2 projects to ensure that all of the students would be able to have a role on set. They’ve been working hard to complete each film in under 72 hours total, and will be premiering their final cuts soon.
In addition to writing, shooting, and editing short films, members of the Film Production Club have access to the expertise of upperclass members and club alumni, who often come back to lead masterclasses on different aspects of the filmmaking process. Club president, Max Halle-Podell, has scheduled workshops on crafting a narrative, cinematography and editing so far this year and plans to bring back more alumni to lead more sessions next quarter.
This access to new professionals is a draw for many Film Production Club members. Film production classes at the MFJS department are popular and fill up quickly. The workshops hosted by the Film Production Club give students the opportunity to get a head start on learning and using the production skills taught in the classroom.
As president of the Film Production Club, Halle-Podell sees himself as a facilitator for the rest of the members, as someone who can provide resources and help guide those with less filmmaking experience. His goal is to have built the Film Club into a self-sustaining film production organization and networking community by the time he graduates at the end of 2024. He hopes to complete a comprehensive guide to editing on Premiere as well as other guides for each element of the film production process to provide a template for students to follow from start to finish. He also hopes to have access to regular funding which would allow students to pay for additional resources like music licensing and equipment rentals.
While in the past the club has mostly focused on creating short films, Halle-Podell is also hoping to start adding music videos, fashion pieces, and sketch comedy to the mix.
“I’m passionate about breaking molds about what filmmaking is or should be,” he says.
The Film Production Club is also dedicated to being a space where every member can have a voice. Egos collide in any creative space, but the film production process must be collaborative.
“Filmmaking is patriarchal,” Halle-Podell says, “the loudest voices always dominate.” It takes work and consistent teamwork to create a better culture and to be sure that every participant feels heard and has a role in the process.
Find out more about DU’s Film Production Club and how to get involved on Instagram at @DUFilmProduction or on Crimson Connect. And be sure to watch this fall's 72 hour horror challenge films on YouTube!