Drawing back the curtain on student productions, the dreams of all these aspiring filmmakers of Whittier College have been brought to life this week. On Wednesday, Nov. 9, Whittier’s Video Production Studios (VPS) premiered their annual Dub C Film Fest. This year’s theme was “Decades of Horror.” Eight films competed this year for the vied-after gift card prizes provided by VPS. This unique opportunity allows amateur filmmakers a chance to try their hand with professional film equipment and a serious deadline, completing their film within the span of a week.
“[Dub C Film Fest is] a short film competition,” said Senior Executive Production Manager Luis Manzo. “Basically, the premise is that you have to do a 3-10 minute short film. You have to shoot it within a week; then we screen it and we announce winners for various prizes. This year, we have four categories that you can win. There is ‘Best Short Film,’ ‘Best Cinematography,’ ‘Best Editing,’ and ‘Best Acting.’” This is the second year VPS has held this film festival, but this festival deviated slightly from the festival students attended last year. “It derived from Campus MovieFest, which is an outside organization with a similar premise. They do it nationally around other college campuses. They were a part of it last year, but we decided not to use [Campus MovieFest] this year because we weren’t satisfied with their performance.” Manzo said. “They weren’t present. They only had one person on campus and they asked for help a lot. We felt like we could pull off a better film festival and I feel like we have so far. We are still learning, so there has been some bumps in the road, but we are definitely working on it.”
Sophomore Sydney Summers, a part of A.D.R.N.T. Productions, is a part of one of the eight filmmaking teams this year. Comprised of all first-time filmmakers, this has certainly been an educational journey for both her and her team. “I wanted to take part in the Dub C Film Fest, because honestly, it would be dumb not to,” Summers said. “With access to so much great, expensive equipment for free, and so much talent, we thought, ‘why not take advantage of it?’ We stumbled upon great ideas and we followed through, which was a great feeling. It was also something new.” And new it certainly is: there are not many opportunities for college filmmakers, primarily due to a lack of funding as well as access to professional equipment, but VPS allowing amateur filmmakers who just want a shot to see what they are capable of. VPS provided all the editing and filming equipment and the results were astonishing.
Following the screening, VPS announced the winners. A huge congratulations to the cast and crew of A.D.R.N.T. Productions, sophomores Sydney Summers, Stephee Bonifacio, and first-year Lauren Porras, for Best Cinematography. Additional congratulations go to to senior Taylor Pool for Best Editing and junior Daniel Bautista for Best Horror.