Simple film magic; First Hawk’s Handmade Film Festival

The logo for the shirts was created by freshman Katlyn Blosser.; Many students will take with them the skills they built in producing these films.

Katlyn Blosser

The logo for the shirts was created by freshman Katlyn Blosser.; Many students will take with them the skills they built in producing these films.

Jessica Fannin, Reporter

     On April 22nd North Harford hosted its first Hawks Handmade Film Festival made up of a variety of different productions that captured the cinematic skills of students. It was put together by Team Film Festival, ITS, and Drama Club. The festival was a chance for students to put their creative minds and filming skills to use and tell a unique story. 

     Many students created their films around topics like music, cultural diversity, animation, and more. The many submissions were judged by teachers at NH such as science teacher Mr. Green, Misentity Literary Magazine Advisor Mr. James, and Journalism teacher Mrs. Chandler. Not only were the judges teachers from NH, but there was a special guest judging the videos, Peter Matthew Smith! He is a Broadway actor who played King George the third in Hamilton during the Angelica tour. 

     He felt that the films were “so creative and talented,” and he was, “so proud of all the students.” During his talk in the film festival Smith sang an encouraging song for the audience on his ukulele. The song was about hope and positivity when it came to dealing with the pandemic. 

     The generous prize of a sweet beeswax and goodies basket went to “the most inspiring film” called “The Girl Behind the Smile” by Courtney Dongarra, a senior. She shared a personal side to herself in the video about her journey with Epilepsy and how she perseveres through its challenges.

     Awards such as “most suspenseful, best editing, and best cinematography,” were received by sophomore Abby Saltzer and senior Tim Saltzer. They created a film that kept the audience on the edge of their seats called “The Return of Teddy.” The film depicted the story, “about a man who finds a teddy bear in his attic and goes through many trials to destroy it.” 

     They explained how they both came up with the story and both worked through a “very lengthy,” film process. After “months of ideas,” they put the story together over “three days of filming before editing.” It took Abbey, “about a week to finalize the movie.” 

     As the main character of the film Tim felt, “blessed with getting the lead role by being told that there was no say in the matter.” Despite having no choice of whether he was in the film or not, “at the end of the day we had fun and accomplished something pretty cool!” 

     A tricky shot they had to pay special attention to was how they made, “it seemed as though the bear was being destroyed without harming it.” They accomplished this clip, “through very specific camera angles.”

     At one point in the video it looked like blood was dripping from the ceiling! Tim called it, “simple movie magic.” He confessed the dramatic shot was achieved through, “a new sheet of drywall and red food dye that was bled through the back.”

     In the end Abbey and Tim’s commitment to the video quality paid off when they received all their awards. Abbey claimed, “it was rewarding to be recognized for the hard work.” It was also a great experience for her because she, “enjoyed working with Tim to make a film that people seemed to enjoy.”  Glady, Abbey promised “to buy ice cream,” for Tim for his contributions to the video.

     Overall, the festival was a success and many people discovered just how cinematically inclined the students at NH are.