Point Loma Nazarene University
Contact: Nicholle Jaramillo
Point TV: Channel 23 Marketing & Promotions Mgr.
Advisor: Alan Hueth (619) 849-2358
Date: April 22, 2011
Written by: Nicholle Jaramillo
Student Short Film makes it to Cannes, FR
The French Riviera, the world’s oldest and prestigious film festival, the Cannes Film Festival. The non-public event gives Europeans the chance to market their films on the basis of artistic quality. For most, it is hard to imagine what attending and participating in the festival would be like. However, for two PLNU media communication students, this dream is not so far fetched.
Almost every semester, a group of PLNU media communication students study for a semester at the Los Angeles Film Studies Center. During their time there, each student works on the production of several short films. On April 7, 2011, Ashley Gulden, a senior media communications major, and Lucy Peterson, a senior media communications major received an email from L.A. Lyles, a fellow student from their fall, 2010, semester at the LAFSC. She informed the two that their short film, Camp Death, would be shown in the “Short Film Corner” of the 2011 Cannes Film Festival.
“It’s your classic tale of a man with a mask and a machete out to kill a group of campers,” said Peterson. “For some reason, people like that stuff no matter what way you tell it.”
Camp Death is a classic 1980’s slasher-film, and follows troubled teens at a rehabilitation camp. During their stay, they are hunted by an urban legend, ex-camper “Ethan,” in the woods. Each teen is followed as they struggle to stay alive in the woods.
When both Gulden and Peterson, they were both shocked and gratified. The film process took a total of about four months to develop—with the actual shooting being completed over two weekends of night-time shooting.
“I was pleased that I was apart of a team that is gaining international recognition,” said Gulden. “It was a wonderful experience that has paid off for my career.”
As for why the team thinks that it was picked, there are mixed reactions. The average LAFSC film might not be deemed “Oscar worthy,” but many film students tell tales of sleepless nights and dedication.
“I think it was selected because it is different from other current short films in the horror genre,” said Gulden. “It has artistic layers within the film including the lighting, production design, and camera angles.”
On set, Peterson was both script supervisor and editor. Editing a 10-minute short film is both a lengthy and time-consuming process. As the lead production designer, Gulden, scouted locations, designed the costumes, gathered the props, created the special effects and was in charge of visual elements. Although the end product was something to be proud of, that is not to say the crew did not face challenges along the ways.
“Dealing with locations and the crew was sometimes difficult,” said Peterson. “Plus it was really cold both nights we filmed. At one of the locations I even saw a coyote try to wander up to our set.”
Everyone knows gratification can come from hard work. For these two women, this recognition is went far beyond their expectations.
“When you put that much time into something, it becomes important to you,” said Peterson. “I guess it would be sort of like if you had a kid and you saw your kid make it into the school they wanted.”
For information on LAFSC and Camp Death please contact Lucy Peterson firstname.lastname@example.org, Ashley Gulden at email@example.com, and Alan Hueth at AlanHueth@pointloma.edu.