Students harness film to explore mental health
The 24 January Premiere at Cinema Nova was a special night for Open Channel’s student filmmakers with the debut screening of their two short films examining media and mental illness issues, Medication Time (horror/comedy short film, image to right) and Media and Mental Illness (short documentary).
The films were the accumulation of three months hard work and creativity for the students who all experience mental illness. The unique training program was funded by Doutta Galla Community Health, the Commonwealth Department of Health and Ageing and supported by television training organisation Open Channel, and Penguin Artists.
The project involved students, volunteer crew, actors, industry professionals, and trainers.
Doutta Galla CEO Dianne Couch expressed her enthusiasm for the project: “Congratulations to the students on their films and completion of Certificate III in Media (Filmmaking); a Nationally Recognised Statement of Attainment. This is a fantastic outcome that will open up further opportunities for them. We also look forward to working with our partners to offer other community projects in the future.”
“The CPE project screening was a great result and I was really impressed by the quality of work, and the achievement of the students. The drama film was certainly a strong and highly accomplished short film. Open Channel is proud to have been part of this partnership and this valuable program”. Jennie Hughes, Former Executive Director of Open Channel, Executive Producer of films such as Dirty Deeds, Crackerjack, Bad Eggs, Gettin Square and International Sales Agent Macleods Daughters.
Open Channel & Moonee Valley Council present: Super Terrorise Me presents Bully Planet
The Australian Government’s Youth Development and Support Program, which is managed by the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations, provided funding in 2012 in support of a production initiative between Open Channel and Moonee Valley Council to deliver a community based ANTI BULLYING project for Young People aged between 12 and 25.
The project called Super Terrorise Me: The Web Series provided young people in Moonee Valley City Council with the opportunity to develop and produce an original anti-bullying web series with mentoring from established award-winning screen industry professional, Nick Moore.
The production process helped the young group to develop skills in writing, directing, producing, cinematography, lighting, sound, set design, performance, music, editing and web compression.
Super Terrorise Me – Bully Planet
Shepparton Upskilling Workshop
Open Channel recently loaded up the mobile training unit with lights, cameras, reflector boards, sandbags, and all other crucial filmmaking kit, and headed out to Shepparton for a day-long Upskilling Workshop. Housed in the creative comfort of a studio space at the Shepparton Art Gallery, the workshop drew together a diverse group of locals, from teenagers through to professionals all of whom were there with the specific goal of polishing up their filmmaking skills.
Advice was given to the participants regarding specific projects and sharing personal experiences to explore ways to ‘find your story’, improve camera and lighting skills, master ‘the art of the interview’ and structure post-production work-flow, amongst other topics.
A great day was had by all, with energetic and creative conversations shared throughout the day. By 5pm the workshop drew to an end, the gear was back in the OC mobile training unit and the tutors set off back to Melbourne, as the sun set on the town of Shepparton. Another day, another filmmaking workshop in the can!
Brigalong Filmmaking Training & Film Festival a Success!
Last year the Victorian town of Brigalong (population 1,075) hosted its first ever film festival. In the weeks prior Open Channel delivered Filmmaker Training to a group of emerging filmmakers in the Brigalong region to generate local content for the Film Festival.
Open Channel conducted filmmaking workshops in the run-up to Brigalong’s first ever film festival. People aged 8 to 80 participated in the Silent Film workshop, for beginners, and a Short Documentary workshop; workshop films were screened in the festival. Brigalong Film Festival was presented by the National Film and Sound Archive (a division of Film Victoria) and supported by Open Channel.
After a tumultuous week of flooding, locals braved the cold then a power blackout, to attend the premiere screening of the films made during the festival’s Fast Filmmaking Challenge.
Presented by the National Film and Sound Archive (a division of Film Victoria) and supported by Open Channel, there were eight films showcased in the festival lineup that were created in the Open Channel workshops the week before; The Silent Filmmaking Workshop on the Saturday in which beginner participants created a story out of images and put them to music, and The Short Documentary Workshop on Sunday, in which advanced participants shot and edited an interview with a town character, finding twenty cutaways that added value to the story.
The festival drew together an eclectic bunch of filmmakers, mainly from Briagolong, but some had travelled from as far as Port Welshpool and Lake Narracan; amongst the mix were nine year-olds, university students, and retirees, filming on a wide range of devices from mobile phones through to video cameras. All filmmakers had to plan, prepare and shoot their films in a day, during which they encountered some rather unpredictable rain events and dramas such as included last minute interviewee changes. The results were fantastic – captivating the audience with a showcase of local scenery and characters.
Check out the website for more information and check out the showreel for festival highlights!
Shepparton’s ‘Emerging Voices’ Festival screens Yarnin films
Uncle Lenny Clarke
Open Channel and YARNIN Pictures were proud to be part of SheppARTon ‘Emerging Voices’ Festival on March 10th 2013 – a perfect platform for the Shepparton launch of the indigenous ‘YARNIN’ web series.
Yarnin is a mobile training program travelling throughout Victoria working with local Aboriginal communities to record their history of Land Rights from an insider’s perspective. The program records detailed interviews from which short documentaries are produced and screened online, and on other platforms.
Yarnin was conceived by Bobby Nicholls, Rebecca McLean and John Harding and is produced in conjunction with Victorian screen organisation Open Channel.
Supported by Film Victoria, the Australian Government Office of the Arts, Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education, the aim of Yarnin is to record audio-visual history whilst training a new generation of Indigenous filmmakers and journalists. This is the first time Aboriginal Land Rights in Victoria has been fully explored in a concise and detailed media project.
Open Channel Executive Director Marc Gracie comments, “Open Channel is proud to be a part of the Yarnin Project – a significant film project which serves to both preserve our important Aboriginal cultural heritage for future generations, and also to train the next generation of Aboriginal filmmakers here in Victoria.”
Yarnin program facilitators Rebecca McLean, Bobby Nicholls, and Johnny Harding, along with the young filmmakers, launched the Yarnin’ website in Shepparton on Sunday March 10 along with Open Channel Executive Director Marc Gracie.
The Yarnin films won prizes for Best Local Film and Best Festival Theme in the Shepparton Shorts Film Festival.
Festival info: www.sheppARTonfestival.org.au
Yarnin Indigenous documentaries premiere at SURVIVAL DAY celebrations in Warrnambool
Yarnin Pictures in association with Open Channel presented the first films of the series: Yarnin – A History of Land Rights in Victoria. at Gunditjmara Survival Day, 26 January 2013 in Warrnambool.
Yarnin was conceived by Bobby Nicholls, Rebecca McLean and John Harding and is produced in conjunction with Open Channel.
A mobile training program, Yarnin travels throughout Victoria working with local Aboriginal communities to record their history of Land Rights from an insider’s perspective. The program records detailed interviews from which short documentaries are produced and screened online, and on other platforms.
Supported by Film Victoria, the Australian Government through the Office of the Arts and the Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education, the aim of Yarnin is to record audio-visual history whilst training a new generation of Indigenous filmmakers and journalists. This is the first time Aboriginal Land Rights in Victoria has been fully explored in a concise and detailed media project.
The Tarerer Gunditj Survival Day Concert and cultural festival event was officially launched with a WELCOME TO COUNTRY, followed by the launch of the Yarnin documentaries by Aboriginal activists Bobby Nicholls and John Harding, and Producer Rebecca McLean. Local bands performed well into the night.
Open Channel Executive Director Marc Gracie comments, “Open Channel is proud to be a part of the Yarnin Project – a significant film project which serves to both preserve our important Aboriginal cultural heritage for future generations, and also to train the next generation of Indigenous filmmakers here in Victoria.”
Greek Film Festival: Teacher Filmmaker Bootcamp
The Greek Film Festival has for the past three years ran a Student Film Festival, in which students from Primary, Secondary and University can submit short films. The films are generally produced by students in groups, under the guidance of their teachers.
This year, to support teachers with the production of these films, the Greek Community of Melbourne (which operates the Greek Film Festival) offered filmmaking workshops to these teachers, which also contributed towards their professional development.
The Open Channel Filmmaking Bootcamp took place onsite at the Greek Community of Melbourne’s community centre in Lonsdale Street. The introductory course provided teachers with the basic skills to produce a solid short film, with improved production values, which were then screened, as part of the competition, at the Greek Film Festival.
The teachers were enthusiastic – and some of them extremely competitive – the competition is a tight! For further information about the Festival visit: www.greekfilmfestival.com.au