The 48-Hour Film Project: Thoughts After the Fact

As promised, I am sharing the link to the film Team Marvette produced for the 48-Hour Film Project (see below). I’ll throw in a few extra thoughts since I’m here.

The film was shown to a crowd of interested folks–mostly cast and crew from the films–at Valencia Community College’s East Campus on Saturday, August 18. It was one of 31 films submitted in Orlando this year. They actually ended up running the films over the course of three nights, with approximately ten films shown per night. Of those films, the judges chose their favorite based on:

  • Artistic Merit (story, creativity, entertainment, etc.) – 45%
  • Technical Merit – 30%
  • Adherence to the Assignment – 25%

There is also an Audience Award, which goes to the film that gets the most votes from the attendees at the premieres. According to the 48HFP website other awards may include:

  • Best Acting
  • Best Cinematography
  • Best Directing
  • Best Editing
  • Best Musical Score
  • Best Sound Design
  • Best Special Effects
  • Best Use of Character
  • Best Use of Prop
  • Best Use of Line
  • Best Writing

We got an award for the best use of the required prop.

Before you watch the film, I thought I’d share the required elements all of the filmmaking teams needed to include for the Orlando competition:

Required Character: Chris or Christina Brownstreet, former child actor

Required Line of Dialogue: “No way. Absolutely no way.”

Required Prop: a spice

Our team’s drawn-from-a-hat genre was comedy.

So now that you’ve gotten that introduction, have a look at “Nick Napped.” Go ahead, I’ll wait (total run time is 6:12).

What do you think? Fun? Funny? I enjoyed it, anyhow.

One might gripe with the background noise on occasion, but otherwise, the cinematography and editing were TV quality, in my humble opinion. More importantly, in my view, it manages to tell a complete story. At the premiere our Director of Photography, Mike, noted that most of the directors would have liked to do more on their sound editing if they’d had more time. But, again, not too shabby for a 48-hour effort.

What was interesting to me was how the individual teams worked within the constraints of their genre and the three required elements. Many of the teams made the required character the center of their story. They also had fun incorporating the required prop, a spice. At least one other film I saw used pepper spray, though in their case it was literally pepper spray, not the humorous version we used. The genre seemed to shape how the required line of dialogue appeared in the script. Given the comedic nature of our script (and to have a little fun with the judges), we managed to tap-dance around using it–three different ways, once in Spanish–before it finally was spoken as written toward the end.

I was curious to see if I could recognize any of the locations the other teams used for their stories. I didn’t, but it was important to recall that everyone was working in the Orlando area for practical reasons–they had to drop off their entry at Valencia CC by 7:30 p.m., August 12. Team Marvette managed to shoot four different scenes in one location. Lacking a big budget, you work with what you have.

And I have to say it: there were some remarkable films among the ten I saw–serious competition! There’s a “best of” screening of the top ten films from Orlando, which I’d be tempted to attend, except that Team Marvette is having our belated “wrap party” at Orlando Brewing that night. Oh, well. There’s always YouTube.

I was pleased to learn that Mike and Curt forwarded my various blogs (here, here, and here) to the Orlando organizer. He plans to include them as introductory material for future participants so they get a feel for what the experience is like. Much like the space business, where the tech writer is not designing or building the rockets, in this case I wasn’t really making the film, either. Still, I found a role explaining what was going on–writing the “Making Of” story, as it were. Something to think about if you’re looking for a new/different place to apply your talents.

About Bart Leahy

Freelance Technical Writer, Science Cheerleader Event & Membership Director, and an all-around nice guy. Here to help.
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3 Responses to The 48-Hour Film Project: Thoughts After the Fact

  1. d2rector13 says:

    Two points of note:
    1) We got a NOMINATION for the best use of the required prop. The AWARD will be announced tonight.
    2) There is a WRAP Party tonight at an Irish Pub near the Cinema venue. Team Marvette isn’t hosting a wrap party tonight at Orlando Brewing, unless someone forgot to invite me…. Curt/D2’s feeling about Wrap Party is “pick a date when everyone has a chance of making it – and making it to work/play the next day.”

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