After Film Club experienced a brief hiatus during the past year, Junior and Film Club President John Muth had the idea to host an event in order to reinvigorate the club for the future. The event, the 18|37 film festival, took place on Friday, May 18 from 7 p.m. to 1:37 p.m. the next day. Teams were allotted 18 hours and 37 minutes to write, create and produce a short film. The time designated for the Knox edition was modeled after
the year the school was founded: 1837.
“The group of us that are in Film Club took it over because it kinda died and disappeared all this year,” Muth said. “We wanted to bring [Film Club] back and end the year with a bang, saying ‘next year, we’re gonna be even bigger and better!’”
Muth had the idea to host the event, which is modeled after the 48 Hour Film Project, a globally recognized contest with the same stipulations of constructing an entire short film, yet in 48 hours. Being a non-traditional student, Muth has had years of experience in the arts across the United States: from earning an associate’s degree in Graphic Design and Illustration from the Art Institute of Pittsburgh to living in Los Angeles to work on the production of various feature films, music videos and commercials. He has thus far made four short films of his own. After taking an Introduction to Arts and Administration business class at Knox this term, Muth felt inspired to reboot the film club as a platform to share his passion and experiences with other students.
“I love short films because they are just a small nugget of a story,” Muth said. “It tells you the story, it gets you out and hopefully makes you thinkÐthe you move on with your day.”
With experience in educating at a film camp in New York and a filmmakers’ group in Washington DC, Muth is no stranger to teaching about film. He hopes that through watching films and sharing his knowledge with Film Club he can help give other students a feel for what a film major might be like, if Knox eventually decides to develop one. Knox has proven to hold an audience of students interested in film production, through numerous Film Studies minors and the outcome of the 18|37 Film Festival, which summoned an audience of 18 creators.Freshman Veronica Langley, who was a participant in the festival, hopes to eventually become a filmmaker. “When I saw that [the film festival] was happening É I signed up with no team. I got my teammates the day of,” Langley said. “I wanted to try it out, and I really wanted to get involved with Film Club as well.”
The stipulations for the festival required each film to incorporate a specific prop and a specific line. For Langley’s team, the prop was a Night of the Living Dead DVD case and the line was “Wanna cuddle in a hammock Tuesday?” She said that the entire production process took approximately 10 hours, and although her team’s stipulations set a challenge for a plot, the writing process took only an hour.
“[Our team] went into Alumni Hall and started coming up with ‘How do we put this very romantic line of dialogue with this very horror-centric prop?’” Langley said.
Her team ultimately submitted a 3 1/2 minute film titled Love at First Fright, which Langley described as a “weird zombie love story.” The film, which depicted a zombie spying on and making numerous failed attempts to meet her love interest, won three out of the four available awards: Best Use of Line of Dialogue, Best Picture, and the Audience Award. Film Club Treasurer Ariana Tull ‘21 was among the two judges for the festival. Although there were six teams in total producing short films, only two teams submitted their films by the deadline.
“[Veronica’s film] was our favorite because it was quirky and funny. [The other judge and I] were wondering what the heck they were gonna do [given their stipulations],” Tull said. “It had us on our toes watching it the first time, like ‘how are they gonna wanna cuddle in a hammock?’”
The members of film club were pleased with the outcome of the event; although not everyone caught the deadline, 18 individuals were present and interested in the production of six short films, whether or not they were produced on time. The club intends to host the event again next year, amidst other opportunities to get involved with Film Club. Information and films from this year’s festival can be found on the website for the event at: http://1837ff.wixsite.com/home.