GradyFest 2012

Posted: May 24, 2012 in Uncategorized

In case you missed out on GradyFest this May, here are some of the incredible student films shown at this years event. GradyFest is Grady’s annual student film festival in the spring that showcases student works for Mass Media Arts (MMA) as well as Broadcast news students. The films below are some of the highlights from Mass Media Arts students.

Nearsayerfive – Directed by Matt Evans

Matt is a graduating senior and also won best Directing for The Last Playground


Waltz for One – Cinematography and Visual Effects by David Trocivia

David won Best Visual Effects and is a previous winner of Best Director of Photography. He is a graduating senior.


Traffic – Cinematography by Emily Breault

Emily won Best Director of Photographer and is a graduating senior.

Falling Down – Directed by Paige Pulaski

Paige is a junior in the MMA program and won Best Scriptwriting.

Also be sure to check out Gracie Has a Glass Eye directed by graduating senior Raines Plambeck,  Smilers by senior Sam Parker, and The Last Playground series created by the senior “combo” advanced production class.


Trip to PC&E!

Posted: March 2, 2012 in FU News

Last Saturday the Filmmaking Union made a trip to PC&E (Production Consultants and Equipment) in Atlanta!

The trip was a HUGE success; our members were able to learn tons of helpful information about different types of cameras and lens, and also tour one of the most renown film rental/stage facilities in Georgia! We couldn’t take as many pictures as we might have liked, but here is just a few… don’t be jealous of the ridiculously expensive camera equipment we got to play with 🙂

President of FU, Meredith Mckay, cheeses it up for one of the industry's newest cameras!

beautiful... *tear*

Professional cinematographer Jason, came all the way out to PC&E just to talk to us about cameras and what its like to work in the ATL film industry!

A Fighting Chance

Be sure to try to watch ‘A Fighting Chance’ on Hulu before FU’s meeting this Thursday at 6:30 in MLC room 267! Director of the film, Takashi Doscher, will be coming to speak to us about his experiences producing a documentary that was picked up by ESPN!

Come with questions to ask! This is your opportunity to get some great insider tips on what you can do to get YOUR work out there in the industry!

Link  —  Posted: February 14, 2012 in FU News, Student Films

Lets learn some editing basics!

Posted: February 11, 2012 in Career Resources

Alright everyone, so many of you at our meeting a few weeks ago mentioned that you’re interested in learning some of the basics of filmmaking, which is great! So here we’ll start showing you the foundation of making your own movie… EDITING! There are many different avenues on going about editing, but lets start with one of the most common—using Final Cut Pro.

If you already know how to use FCP, than stay tuned for a blog coming up where we will delve into the wonders of Audodesk Maya Animation software! (a really handy skill to have in order to keep your resume looking unique and fresh).

Now for starters, Final Cut Pro can be rather expensive, but if you buy it as a student you’ll be able to get a discounted version which should do most things you need it too. It can be beneficial to buy Final Cut Pro while you’re still in school, not only to save yourself a little cash, but also for those of you who plan on professionally making films, its good to know and have the software so that if a job comes up you’re ready to go!

However, if you have a few years before you graduate, you may want to hold off. We live in an ever changing world of technology and by the time you graduate, you could have an outdated editing software (though Final Cut Pro 7 will probably still be being used). SO if you’re not really wanting to spend money on the software yet, than no worries! If you’re a Grady student you’ll be able to use the computers on the 5th floor of Grady in the computer lab, and they have Final Cut Pro software and tape decks!

Now, before editing your film, make sure you have your script and all of your shot sheets with you. Its a good idea to plan out your editing BEFORE you start; it’ll make the process much smoother.

Here is a great website where you can get all the paperwork templates you could ever want for all the stages of making your film (including editing) →

Below is a video about the absolute basics on Final Cut Pro; make sure to jot down the more important things, like settings and numbers, these notes will come in handy when you start working and specifics have slipped your mind.

The guy who did this first video, actually has a FCP beginners series, which looks pretty helpful if you’d like to continue to look through the videos and get better aquainted with the software.

If this tutorial is not to your liking, there are plently more all over the internet, and there is always your friendly Filmmakers’ Union officers! And we’re always glad to help you out with any questions you may have, just shoot us an e-mail!

Teach Us How To Dougie

Posted: February 8, 2012 in Film/Media Contests

“Think you got moves? Whether you got moves or just make moves, submit a video of your best dougie performance for a chance to win a $50 Visa gift card.” That’s the easiest money you’ll make this semester. 4 days left to enter!!

Golden Globes

Posted: January 17, 2012 in Industry News

The Golden Globes is known to many as “The Road to the Oscars”.  Indeed, many winners of Golden Globe Awards in film often experience Oscar glory.  This year’s Golden Globe winners.  Here’s a brief recap of some of the winners and insights about the films (with a few pictures scattered in just for fun):

Best Motion Picture – Drama –
The Descendants (A land baron tries to re-connect with his two daughters after his wife suffers a boating accident.)
Contending with this film was sleeper hit The Help, and Spielberg’s (overly drawn-out) epic, War Horse.

Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy –
The Artist – (Hollywood, 1927: As silent movie star George Valentin wonders if the arrival of talking pictures will cause him to fade into oblivion, he sparks with Peppy Miller, a young dancer set for a big break.)
Despite being silent and black and white, this film was a hit with both critics and audiences.  Sometimes, a nod to past styles and trends in film history can be refreshing (having an adorable and dog as a supporting actor doesn’t hurt either!)

Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Drama
George Clooney (The Descendents)
Other contenders for the award: Leonardo DiCaprio (J. Edgar), Ryan Gosling (The Ides of March), Michael Fassbender (Shame), and Brad Pitt (Moneyball)
Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture – Drama
Meryl Streep (Iron Lady)
Her biggest contender was said to be Viola Davis (The Help), but Streep pulled though for her performance as former British Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher.
Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy

Jean Dujardin (The Artist)
Leave it to the French Dujardin to portray a troubled foreign actor in Hollywood classical movies.

Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy
Michelle Williams (My Week with Marilyn)
Contending with Williams for the awards: Kristen Wiig (Bridesmaids), Kate Winslet (Carnage), Charlize Theron (Young Adult), and Jodie Foster (Carnage)

Skipping winners of supporting actors/actresses in a motion picture (for full list see
Best Animated Film
The Adventures of Tintin
Advanced graphics and animation really made this film stand out and set the bar high for future animated films.
Best Screenplay – Motion Picture

Woody Allen (Midnight in Paris)
A romantic comedy about a family traveling to the French capital for business. The party includes a young engaged couple forced to confront the illusion that a life different from their own is better. Owen Wilson’s character manages to visit the his literary heroes of the past… in the past. A must-see, though Rachel McAdams doesn’t play a very convincing unsupportive/cynical fiance.

Best Director – Motion Picture
Martin Scorsese
Apparently, if you are to see any film in 3D in theaters, this is the top recommendation.  Hugo is set in 1930s Paris, about an orphan who lives in the walls of a train station is wrapped up in a mystery involving his late father and an automaton.  Sounds very different than your conventional animated film, but this movie is exceptional.
Those are some of the motion picture winners of the 2012 Golden Globe Awards, and we think this ceremony is rightly called “The Road to the Oscars”.  We look forward to and will report back with the 2012 Academy Award nominations!  Again, for more info about these films and other winners of Golden Globes (past and present), visit


Posted: December 29, 2011 in Career Resources, Film/Media Contests

For $150 to $300, GoPros are fantastic cameras for anyone who just likes making films.  Aside from the classic HD HERO Naked, the line specializes in sports products such as HD Motorsports HERO, HD Surf Hero, and HD Helmet HERO. Regardless to whether you’re an athlete or not, GoPros are just fun cameras to have that make great quality videos for how much they cost.

You’re probably wondering why we love them so much and this is why: they have daily giveaways. That’s right, everyday they give away one of their products. If you’re like me, you can make it your homepage and enter to win here everday –

Check out this video shot entirely on the GoPro HD Hero2. Cut to 1:20 to start watching some great sky diving, surfing, and extreme sports footage.

Here is a look of some of the great trailers and shorts shown at the Cinematic Showdown, student film festival this past Wednesday, November 9th.

Fakin’ It Trailer, Alina Yudkevich


Knightmare, Dustin Hitzing and Andrea Skellie


Tortura de la Muerta, David Goehring and Darien LaBeach


Detour, David Trocivia

Brandon Stiles as clown mafia leader “Joey Balloons”

Over the past few months, I have had the honor of working as co-producer on an the independent study, Within the Shadows. This film is directed by Grady Mass Media Arts student, Mark Willard, the 2011 Campus Movie Fest winner for UGA. Within the Shadows is an action-packed comedy about two boys who must rescue their friend Emma from the clown mafia using the guidance of a kooky blind ninja master.

This project has been a labor of love to say the least.  Co-Producer Amanda Wade and I spent days of pre-production scheduling, casting, filling out mountains of paperwork and keeping the the production on point. After weeks of planning, the real fun began. Filming began the first week of October.

Like every film, the production has had its challenges. With a shoe string budget, location choices are limited and you have to rely on the goodness of your cast and crew to show up to set everyday for no pay. Despite these obstacles, filming has been a blast. I highly recommend getting out there and working on student films. The more help they have, the better the finished product will be!

Andrea Skellie – Andrea is the Vice President of Filmmaking Union and senior Mass Media Arts major.       

*Edited by Meredith McKay

The clown mob in downtown Athens.

Director Mark Willard goes over lines with the cast.

Director of Photography, Mike Kljucaric, with actor, Cody Sanders.

The crew working hard on the playground!

Compared to feature Hollywood films, documentaries have a smaller, more specialized audience.  Let’s be honest, a documentary isn’t the typical date-night movie; you have to be in the right mood and setting to watch a documentary.  Unfortunately, once a documentary leaves the movie theaters, it is often forgotten about (unless, of course, it gets an Academy Award nomination).

With all that being said, and an upcoming workshop about documentary filmmaking on October 19th, we thought we’d post some great documentary picks that you might have missed.

Life in a Day (directed by Kevin Macdonald, 2011) – A documentary shot by filmmakers all over the world that serves as a time capsule to show future generations what it was like to be alive on the 24th of July, 2010

Inside Job (directed by Charles Ferguson, 2010) – Takes a closer look at what brought about the financial meltdown. Don’t watch this film if you have anger-management issues; it can make the most apathetic viewer care about the state of the US economy

Super Size Me (directed by Morgan Spurlock, 2004) – While examining the influence of the fast food industry, Morgan Spurlock personally explores the consequences on his health of a diet of solely McDonald’s food for one month

30 Days series, “Living on Minimum Wage” (directed by Morgan Spurlock, 2005) – An unscripted, documentary-style program where an individual is inserted into a lifestyle that is completely different from his or her upbringing, beliefs, religion or profession for 30 days. The first episode, Minimum Wage, is especially eye-opening as Spulock and his wife struggle to survive on minimal income; a reality for an alarming amount of Americans

Waiting for “Superman” (directed by Davis Guggenheim, 2010) – Guggenheim follows a handful of promising kids through a system that inhibits, rather than encourages, academic growth

Trouble the Water (directed by Carl Deal, Tia Lessin) – A redemptive tale of an aspiring rap artist surviving failed levees of Hurricane Katrina and her own troubled past and seizing a chance for a new beginning

An Inconvenient Truth (directed by Davis Guggenheim, 2006) – A documentary on Al Gore’s campaign to make the issue of global warming a recognized problem worldwide. Regardless of what you believe, this film is a must-see

Man on Wire (directed by James Marsh, 2008) – A look at tightrope walker Philippe Petit’s daring, but illegal, high-wire routine performed between New York City’s World Trade Center’s twin towers in 1974, what some consider, “the artistic crime of the century.” This film is a bit slow, but has an incredible story

March of the Penguins (directed by Luc Jacquet, 2005) – A look at the annual journey of Emperor penguins as they march — single file — to their traditional breeding ground.

Planet Earth (series) – narrated by Sigourney Weaver, 2006)(This breathtaking series won 4 Emmy Awards and features rare footage of life and organisms from all over the globe

Documentaries aren’t the most popular movies to see on a Friday night with friends, but they have a powerful effect on audiences and are usually well-crafted and well-researched.  All of the films listed above are great to check out whether you are a film enthusiast or if you are looking for something new and interesting to watch.  What are your favorite documentaries? Tweet your favorite at UGAFilmmaking. 

*Don’t forget to come out for Cinematic Showdown on Wednesday, November 9th at 8pm, Tate Theater. Film submissions excepted until November 2nd!