The Evanston Art Center (EAC) is calling all aspiring young directors, actors, set designers, cinematographers, composers, editors, costume designers, makeup artists, hairstylists, gophers, and aspiring movie moguls to enter its First Annual Evanston Youth Film Festival competition. The Festival, open to filmmakers under the age of 19 working in all genres, is an opportunity for youth from Evanston and the surrounding area to create and present their own short films. Festival organizer, Anne Stevens says, "We know our local youth are making excellent short films at home, in after school classes and clubs. We want to gather and celebrate their creative work with a public screening."
The Evanston Youth Film Festival is the inaugural endeavor of EAC's newly formed springBoard, a group dedicated to bringing fresh ideas and innovative programs to the Art Center and the audiences it serves. The springBoard's intention is to provide a new outlet for artistic expression and a way for young people to showcase their talents, as well as address the issues they feel are most important in their lives and communities. Festival organizer and springBoard member Michael Finnegan says,"Our goal is to engage and activate the Evanston youth in a creative and positive way and provide a forum for them to present their ideas. In addition it is very important that we create local partnerships and use this event as an opportunity to reach out into the community and provide workshops, resources and guidance to the kids involved." Art Center Director, Norah Diedrich could not agree more. She adds, "I’m thrilled that the Evanston Art Center, through the efforts of our dedicated springBoard group, is supporting a youth filmmaking project. Film interweaves so many expressive elements, from sound and writing to visual sequencing and storytelling. I’m looking forward to viewing the submissions."
The March 17th screening of the winning films will take place at Rotary International in Evanston. The festival organizers are proud to be affiliated with the office of Rotary International and very appreciative of the use of this venue. Rotary has graciously offered their brand new, state of the art theater at 1560 Sherman Avenue in Evanston for the premiere. This joint effort marks the first time that the Evanston Art Center and Rotary International have worked together in this manner to sponsor an event.
Festival guidelines stipulate that film submissions be no longer than two to five minutes in length. The submission site is now open and entries are being accepted through March 3, 2013. There is no fee for entering the competition and cash prizes will be awarded in elementary, middle, and high school age groupings. The winners in each age group will be selected based on the recommendations of a board of independent expert jurors. Multiple prizes of $50, $100, and a grand prize of $200. will be announced during the red carpet screening on March 17, 2013. While there is no entry fee for submitting a film, tickets must be purchased for $10 each to attend the screening. All funds raised will go toward youth scholarships for Evanston Art Center classes.
For more information regarding the festival, its sponsors, to submit a film, and dates to remember, visit the festival website or call the Evanston Art Center at (847) 475-5300.