There's this little film competition that's been going on every year for the past 7 years, the Holland Project's 3-Minute Film Festival, hosted by the Nevada Museum of Art here in Reno. Just wanted to share my personal experience with my first film competition.
Last year was my first time checking this film festival out. I thought it'd be cool to see what kind of quality work local filmmakers were putting out (I was fresh on the film scene this time last year, well, still feel like I am, but was ever more fresh back then). Was a great chance to get a feel for who was out there and what they were doing. After sitting through the 2015 selections I knew that when the time came around the next year I'd make sure I'd submit my own piece.
That brings us to Holland Project's 8th Annual 3-Minute Film Festival (2016) in which 3 weeks prior to the submission date I scouted for a team to collaborate with on this endeavor. My buddy Brandon and brother Cesar agreed to jump on board and BAM! we got it done (it was almost that easy...)!
There were 3 painful phases I experienced during this festival process:
1. Declaring the video ready to submit.
It happens like this; you write the story, cast your actors, grab the footage and then into the editing room. Having the deadline helps a lot, but not really. Couldn't shake the feeling that something else could be done to make the video better. Had the edit "completed" a few days prior to the submission date and decided to call it good and go with my gut. Which leads us to...
2. Waiting to hear back.
Okay. The video is in. Walked it over and submitted it in person, perfect. I know they have it. Got the email confirmation that confirmed it as fact. But then it was time to wait... All the second thoughts would run through my head. Luckily I had heard they are pretty quick to get back about the selections... but they hadn't gotten back yet. Did I follow all the rules? Was it the correct video format? Are they going to get my humor? Oh no. Oh well, I tried. Maybe next year. Oh, wait. My phone isn't on wifi? Let's fix that. Oh, what? 11 unread emails? 1 of them has to be it! YES! WOO! There it was. Pawn Runner was in! But wait, what?
3. Watching others watch my video.
Huh? I thought I wanted others to watch my video. That's why I submitted it, right? Show off what my team and I could do. Yes, that's right. But wow, it was tough sitting there. I have posted my videos online before, shared them plenty of times, and hosted small parties to premier them. But I never had the chance to premier a video in front of a bunch of other strangers (and filmmakers at that) in this fashion before. So there it was; the list of short films (mine was #13 out of 23) so I knew when it'd pop up on screen. Hands were cold as I grew anxious. Okay, it's starting. People didn't laugh, oh no. There was a laugh, good. Okay, that landed, good. Big laugh, nice! It's over, whew... Was definitely fun. Definitely addicting. I just want to work on my next piece and test my videos like from now on. It was almost torture, but I'll be ready next time...maybe?
It was over. I survived the 3 painful phases. Couldn't help but feel underwhelmed at the end. SPOILER ALERT! We didn't snag a top prize. Funny how I could go from coming to the realization our film didn't get picked to expecting to be voted in to the top 3 for the people's choice vote. We did it all for fun and was fun. My favorite part was enjoying everyone else's work. There were a lot of great production value pieces out there this year, lots more than the last. They mentioned there were nearly 100 videos submitted, a new record for the festival, so that's very cool!
All I feel like doing now is reaching out everyone that impressed me (which were plenty of individuals) and seeing how we could work together and grow and learn and make Reno more than what it is now in terms of film. Lots to say on that topic! Another time.
Thanks again to the Holland Project for putting on such an awesome festival experience. So much fun. Excited to see what happens next and how much will happen before then!
Here it is, Pawn Runner: https://youtu.be/7LFmiemvkBg