Beacon Features: Film students, alumni aim for more awards

By Luther Hollis
Opinion Editor

A film production crew comprised of Palm Beach Atlantic University alumni and current students is making its imprint in the film industry. From their early days of collaborating on film class projects to taking first place in the 2008 Miami 48 Hour Film Project, this talented team has accomplished a great deal.

The journey of the eight-person crew kicked into high-speed upon entry into the Miami 48 Hour Film Project in August 2008. Fresh from a lackluster showing in the Tampa 48 Hour Film Project just a month before, the crew decided to toss their hat into the Miami contest hoping for a better experience.

With their trip to Miami came success, and the final cut resulted in the “Best of City” award along with four other sub-category wins.

 

Photo courtesy of Round 2 Productions

Photo courtesy of Round 2 Productions

Winning the Miami 48 Hour Film Project is no easy task, especially when going up against professional and experienced film production crews.

Teams are given 48 hours to produce a film within a chosen genre, containing a specific character name, prop and line of dialogue.

Under the team title of “Round 2 Productions,” Noah Carlson, Danilda Gutierrez, Jon Hout, Caitlyn Howe, John LaSorsa, Ryan Jensen, Dalysabel Mojica and John Spencer Post came together and brought up the character “Bastion Augustin” from an old film-class project.

After being assigned to do comedy, Howe remembers confidently saying, “We can do comedy.”
Essentially, a short-film masterpiece emerged from their work, entitled “Odie and Troy: A Filmmaker’s Odyssey.”

Perhaps the crew’s most important asset is its ability to approach their work with a true “team” attitude.
Gutierrez described the Miami 48 project as “so collaborative in every sense of the word.”
None of the three representative members, LaSorsa, Howe or Gutierrez, could say who is the head of the team because all members “were able to put in their two cents on everything.”

The group operates as one unit, and they say that is what helped catapult them to first place in the Miami 48.

Even though the crew is the close-knit unit that it is, the individuals have certain feats that they hope to accomplish at some point in their film production careers. Howe has aspirations of becoming an assistant director; Gutierrez would like to concentrate on documentaries and “based on a true story” filmmaking; and LaSorsa would like to make a full feature-length film.

Other current projects include a documentary on homelessness in West Palm Beach that Gutierrez and Howe are working on for the city. There are also talks for the crew to work on a series of Internet commercials for an upcoming clothing line based out of West Palm Beach.

Running on the momentum of the big win in Miami, after a year of pre-production work the crew recently wrapped up another installation of the “Bastion Augustin” films. It is expected to release the final cut in January 2010.

As a bona fide film production crew, the team is not above working on projects commissioned by third parties. Whether it is a music video or a company’s promotional video for the Internet or television, it is all welcome work to the crew.

Beyond the Miami 48, the crew plans to submit films to prestigious festivals like the Cannes Film Festival, Sundance, Venice and others.

To watch the Miami 48 awards video, visit the Bastion Augustin Myspace or the official Web site to watch “Odie and Troy: A Filmmaker’s Odyssey.”

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