Drake 48 Hour Film Festival

Seven teams produced films in just two days.

A screenshot from the winning film, “Jan”

Drake students were given two days to write, plan, film, and produce a 2-5 minute short film in a 48-hour film festival hosted by Drake Broadcasting System this past weekend.

Teams convened on Zoom at 5 p.m. on Friday and were given two genres and a line of dialogue they needed to incorporate into their film. Teams could choose between the two genres or incorporate both into the film.

Mia Alaimo, a sophomore at Drake, said the largest challenge was figuring out how to use the genres. Her group produced the film “Jan” and were given the genres of pirate and sports. She said they spent a lot of time simply brainstorming ideas.

However, Alaimo said she was proud of what they were able to accomplish.

“I think our team did such a good job with the stuff that we were given. I think we worked really well together. I think we put together a quality film in 48 hours,” she said.

First-year Sarah O’Neal, creator of “Others,” did not get much sleep during the event. She said they shot Friday night until 4 a.m. Saturday morning and again from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the same day. She has been involved with creating short films before, but never in this short time frame.

Alaimo said she also did not get much sleep.

“It’s a lot of work, I lost a lot of sleep, but it’s a lot of fun. Everyone should do it if they have the chance to,” she said.

O’Neal said the structure of the event completely changes the mindset of how she typically goes about creating a short film.

“I think the hard deadline really helps to get your creativity flowing. I feel like when you have a ton of time, when you have like a month, you kind of procrastinate and you put it off. Whereas, when you only have 48 hours for the whole thing, you’re not putting anything off. You’re doing everything right now,” she said.

Josh Randolph, one of the creators of the film “The Seeker,” said he has participated in the event in the past and is grateful for the opportunity.

Randolph said, “It’s just so easy for someone in our position to be able to do something like this. We’re just shooting on our iPhones and just editing with iMovie. We’re not using thousands of dollars of equipment.”

The winner of the short film is determined with two factors, a combination of audience choice and a panel of three judges. Audience choice is based on the number of YouTube likes on the video. The judges rank the films based on a range of categories, including creativity, storyline and usage of the genres and lines. This is a change from how judging was conducted in the past.

Zak Risken, a senior who also helped create “The Seeker,” said the change was beneficial, as it “feels like it gives more merit to the film.”

Randolph said the change in judging allows for films to do better with relation to the more technical aspects of the process.

The short film “Jan” was the overall judge’s choice and audience choice winner. “Others” and “Hemlock Holmes and the Mystery of the Fallen” tied for second in the judges’ score, with “Others” beating out Holmes with audience choice.

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