The Future of Cinema Starts at Interlochen

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Film Festival is Tailored to Students of Film

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We provide a mix of artistic and educational opportunities that is perfect for any aspiring filmmaker -- or any student who just loves the cinematic arts.

This May, high school filmmakers from around the world will have the rare opportunity to meet with their peers and learn from some of the leading names in film at the third annual Future of Cinema International Film Festival. The event is one of only a few film festivals in the world created exclusively for high school students. The four-day event will take place from May 6 to 9 at the DeRoy Center for Film Studies on the campus of Interlochen Center for the Arts.

“At the Future of Cinema Festival, high school students are not squeezed into a category for young filmmakers -- they are the whole event,” said Michael Mittelstaedt, the festival organizer and director of the motion picture arts program at Interlochen Center for the Arts. “We provide a mix of artistic and educational opportunities that is perfect for any aspiring filmmaker -- or any student who just loves the cinematic arts.” During the four-day event, high school filmmakers will screen works created by their peers and by guest filmmakers and participate in discussions and question-and-answer sessions. The festival attracts entries from around the world -- the 2009 best of fest winner came from the Netherlands.

Festival guests will also interact and learn from established leaders from the film industry. Filmmaker Michael Moore will open the Festival at an interactive forum on Thursday May 6. “We are thrilled to have such a high-profile guest to kick off our third festival,” said Mittelstaedt. “Over the course of his career, Moore has opened doors for documentary filmmakers -- twenty years ago, it was unheard of for a documentary to be widely distributed in movie theaters but today there are so many more opportunities for aspiring filmmakers.”

Students can submit their own work in any of four categories including: narrative, animation, documentary, and screenplay. Detailed rules and submission guidelines are available online. Winners of each category will receive an iPod Touch and a $2000 scholarship to the six-week motion picture arts program at Interlochen Arts Camp. Additional scholarships will also be awarded. Entrants do not need to be present to win. The deadline for submissions to the festival is April 23, 2010.

Any high school student may attend, even if they do not plan to submit a film or screenplay. “This weekend is for students who love cinema. The discussions and learning opportunities last year were incredible,” said Mittelstaedt. “And it’s an ideal opportunity for any student who is considering submitting their work for 2011.”

The Future of Cinema Festival is part of the motion picture arts program at Interlochen Center for the Arts. Students study the fundamental components of screenwriting and production in the most advanced facilities available to high school students. Programs are offered through Interlochen Arts Academy, a fine arts boarding high school and Interlochen Arts Camp, a six-week summer session.

Other guests include:

  • Representatives of the ARRI Group, an industry leader in lighting and camera equipment, will provide hands-on activities.
  • Writer, director and actor, Cory McAbee will screen his works and participate in question-and-answer sessions with students. Best known for his film “The American Astronaut” and his serial film “Stingray Sam,” McAbee has been an innovator in finding new ways to distribute his work. He was selected by the Sundance Film Festival to create short films specifically for mobile phones.
  • Writer, Doug Stanton is the author of the New York Times bestsellers “In Harm’s Way” and “Horse Soldiers,” which spent over three months on the New York Times best-seller list, reaching the number-two position.
  • Actor, Photographer and writer, Benjamin Busch has appeared as an actor on several television programs including “Homicide,” “The Wire,” “Generation Kill” among several others. His first film as a writer-director, “Sympathetic Details,” was released in 2008. An accomplished photographer, he has created two photographic exhibits “The Art in War” and “Occupation,” which feature photos taken during his two combat tours in Iraq.
  • Ground-breaking cinematographer, Daniel Pearl has worked on hundreds of music videos, commercials and several feature films including the “Texas Chainsaw Massacre.”

Interlochen Arts Academy is part of the nonprofit Interlochen Center for the Arts, recipient of the National Medal of Arts and the only organization in the world that brings together: a 2,500-student summer camp program; a 500-student fine arts boarding high school; opportunities for hundreds of adults to engage in fulfilling artistic and creative programs; two 24-hour listener-supported public radio stations (classical music and news); more than 600 arts presentations annually by students, faculty and world-renowned guest artists; and a global alumni base spanning eight decades. For information, visit Interlochen online at .


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