The Boise State Film Festival got a makeover this year.
After a dozen years of accepting submissions from local professional and amateur filmmakers, the festival, hosted by Boise State's Dead Eight Film and Video Club, realigned its focus this year on students of all ages. Going into year 13, the festival—which is a fundraiser for Treasure Valley Community Television—nixed its professional, amateur and non-student categories to accept only submissions from junior high and high school students, in addition to university students.
"Students don't often have a place to show their work, and that really is why we've existed from the very beginning—to have a venue for them," says Susan Randall, coordinator for Boise State's University Television Productions, which is co-sponsoring the festival.
While the festival will continue to function as it has in the past with regard to soliciting submissions, screening a selection of top films and even judging winners, this year's festival, says Randall, is more like a showcase of student work.
About a half-dozen entries came from area junior high and high schools, according to Boise State student Tyler Neisinger, Dead Eight's current president. In total, Neisinger anticipates to screen at least a dozen films—although he's hoping to pull in a few last-minute submissions—in various genres.
"We have some documentary films, and there are a few 3-D animation films—much like what Pixar does," says Neisinger. "They are pretty short, but they're being produced here on campus, and those are definitely interesting because it's unusual to see that at this level."
As for what's in store for the festival's future with the new changes, Randall says festival organizers may consider opening up submission to even younger students in coming years.
"Video production is such that anybody can do it now," she says. "It's become affordable to do it, and the kids are doing great stuff."
Judging will be completed prior to Saturday's screening; however, the audience will have an opportunity to weigh in on the audience-choice award.
Saturday, Feb. 9, 3 p.m., $3 general, $2 students. Boise State Student Union Special Events Center. For more information, visit BoiseState.edu.