With 31 days to the first shooting date of Shoot the Stars—the Film School’s student-run, union-acted program that integrates students interested in working on a film set with a real-world perspective and mentors to advise—crew members met outside the production offices to mark the “official opening production offices” for Season 3 of the program.
The narrow halls of Oñate were filled with people discussing film projects of their own and the ones they were all about to embark on together. Naturally, they made their way to their respective departments; each designated a room in the building with a customized 8.5 x 11 Shoot the Stars sign hanging on the door.
The art department for both “Oasis Motel” and “The Disposables” yielded conversations with mentors, story ideas and upcoming meetings for their projects, while the EPK team, when not documenting the chatter, sang sad songs of their often overlooked efforts and groundbreaking documentation of behind-the-scenes activity. Film School Chairman Chris Eyre could be seen wandering around the perimeter of the building, making hand gestures that from afar would appear to be accompanying what can only be interpreted as delightful banter.
“Come, everyone!” rang Paula Amanda, Film School associate chair. Students hurried outside the building to witness the grand opening to Shoot the Stars Season 3, four weeks prior to principle photography.
Amanda and Eyre gathered the producers and directors of both shoots in front of Oñate Hall.
“This is the opening to the production offices—officially—and the kick off for Shoot the Stars Season 3,” said Eyre. “Now I never say a ceremony’s a ceremony until you touch the ground, so touch the ground,” he continued, prompting everyone to bend down and touch the earth.
Eyre concluded his speech with a message of hope and good fortune. “Let’s just say, blessing for everybody, blessings to the shoot,” he said. “So what we come up with at the end of the day is going to be a reflection of everybody here and the good energy everybody brings! So let’s hear it for the team!”
As the crowd cheered, Bonnie Burchfield (“Oasis Motel”) and Peter Crowder (“The Disposables”), directors of the shoots, cut the ribbon with some whacky over-sized scissors.
“It’s a little scary from the faculty’s standpoint,” Amanda said. “As we start out and then wonder when things are covered and handled.”
When asked about the pressure of deadlines of budgets and final scripts, Amanda directed the pressure toward the crew. “It’s student pressure,” she said, “We’ve set everything up. We’ve created great context for them. “