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Department Of Theatre And Media Arts

Movies, Monsters and More at BYU's First Spooktacular Film and Art Festival

The BYU Student Film Association Hosted its First Spooktacular Film and Art Festival on Saturday, Oct. 29

Stories of spoiled milk, pumpkin-headed zombies and more graced the screen of 1040 WCCB on Oct. 29 during the Student Film Association’s Spooktacular Film and Art Festival.

Media Arts Program Coordinator and Student Film Association (SFA) administrator Grant Gomm said the SFA started the year with no members, but several began showing up to help plan the event.

“This was 100% student film driven, from the original idea to the execution,” Gomm said. “They organized themselves, coordinated tasks and just got it done.”

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Students pose with their Tetris costumes while waiting for the Spooktacular Film and Art Festival to begin. Attendees were encouraged to dress up for the Halloween-themed event.
Photo by Trevor Myers

Attendees were encouraged to dress up, and several showed up wearing group costumes with their friends, including Mario characters, Tetris blocks and the Smurfs.

The event featured screenings of 14 original short films directed, filmed and edited by students. Several films also featured original scores by students.

Each entry had a runtime of three to six minutes and a team of at least three individuals fulfilling the roles of director, writer and poster artist.

Prior to the doors opening for the event, attendees were encouraged to view the posters for each of the films that were hung up outside of the auditorium and vote on their favorites.

Following the screenings, audience members were also invited to vote on their favorite student film of the night.

One entry won the audience choice awards for both best poster and best film. The film “Stranger,” directed by Evadne Hendrix, was about one woman’s experience after her date when she learns that there is a stranger hidden in her apartment.

In between showings, entries were given Spooktacular Awards and a representative for each project walked up to the stage to receive a glitter-covered light-up pumpkin.

“Falling Apart,” directed by Joseph Wood, followed a scientist and her monstrous creation and won the award for best makeup. Other nominees for the Spooktacular Award for Best Makeup were “Midnight Snack,” directed by Cameron Vines and “Ground Meat,” directed by Rebekah Page.

The winner of the Spooktacular Award for Best Screenplay was “Stuffed,” a story about two detectives trying to catch someone who is leaving mutilated stuffed animals around town, directed by Bridger Nebeker. “The X-Rayonic Monster,” directed by Austin J. Lawrence, and “Bloody Shadows II,” directed by Megan Scarlet Keys, were also nominated for best screenplay.

The next winner of the night was “Ring,” directed by Barret Schoenrock, which won the award for best sound design. “Ring” took audience members along with the main character’s unnerving experience in the forest. “Dread,” directed by Kirkland Fullner, and “The Hand,” directed by Cecily Rowland, were nominated for best sound design as well.

The film “Skeletons in the Closet and Monsters Under the Bed,” directed by Joseph Duque, won the Spooktacular Award for Best Performance. The project centered around three roommates and what seemed to be a harmless prank. “Smashing Pumpkins,” directed by Tony Boxer, and “Stranger,” directed by Evadne Hendrix, were the runners-up for the award for best performance.

The films “Ghost Hunters” and “October 11th” received several laughs from the audience, taking different approaches to the comedy horror genre with a mockumentary-style ghost hunting expedition and milk-induced nightmares.

The winners for Best Picture and Best Poster were determined by students and faculty involved with the Student Film Association and were awarded cash prizes for their works.

Soren Fonnesbeck, the president of the SFA, took to the stage to announce winners and speak to audience members. “Stuffed” won Best Picture and “Bloody Shadows II” won Best Poster.

Fonnesbeck invited all who were involved on any project from the evening to stand up while others in the audience applauded their hard work.

With each project limited to 10 group members, the event highlighted the great work that can be done with smaller crews.

Students around campus every Halloween are dressed in some of their best costumes, hoping to run into the photographers. The SFA hopes that the Spooktacular Film and Art Festival will become another beloved Halloween tradition on campus.