* Article updated with additional comments from Oly Film Collective *
by Alec Clayton for OLY ARTS
Olympia Film Collective “Studio” are short film projects shot in four-to-six-hour timeslots. The Collective, an ad hoc group of local filmmakers, is seeking new voices who can help create upcoming “Studio” projects. The upcoming “Studio” slots include two project openings — one to be filmed in June and the other in September.
You do not have to be a professional or experienced to take part: in fact, the collective is seeking outside participants for their “Studio” film projects. According to Collective board member Boojie Waldron, OFC is specifically seeking filmmakers who may not have previously envisioned themselves leading a film project.
Major studio movies are often produced and directed by male, white and middle-class people. Yet as Waldron explains, Olympia Film Collective is open to many voices — new filmmakers “with a different profile would bring some useful insights. I want to make it clear that we at OFC strongly encourage women, people of color and anyone who feels under-represented in the media to participate.”
Waldron plans on running a workshop in May for people interested in writing short scripts for potential use in OFC Studios, and he is specifically seeking to develop new talent.
“The idea driving the ‘Studio’ is to keep filmmakers (directors, actors, camera, sound, etc) working on projects,” Waldron says. “Filmmaking is definitely a group activity, and working on a short film is a terrific learning experience.”
OFC is a collective of local filmmakers started eight years ago when four filmmakers, Jeff Barehand, Russell Brooks, Riley Gibson and Dylan Glockler, came together to shoot a short film Barehand had written called “The Sweet Sorrow.” Barehand has experience in film, television and as a Sundance Film Fellow. But he shares the experience of the Collective, and has encouraged many younger filmmakers to step up in the Olympia region.
“Credit for our [Film Collective’s] origin really belongs to a nomadic web-designing actor who sailed into the Northwest on a boat, and left peddling across the country on a Craigslist bike, never to be seen again,” Barehand says.
“We’re trying to create a vibrant filmmaking culture in Olympia and that’s up to the participants,” says Waldron, who runs two writing meetups a month. One of the meetups is the Screenplay-of-the-Month Club where participants read a feature length screenplay and discuss its structure, characters, tone, what worked, what could’ve been better. “I like to work from the text, but film is a visual element so there’s plenty to talk about,” he says. At the other meetup, writers bring their own work to get feedback and ideas. Both meetings are held at OFC headquarter space rented from Sky Bear Media at 414 1/2 Union Ave. in Olympia.
Upcoming Studio projects will take place in May, June, September, and Oct. The indoor studio the Collective uses does make for easier shooting, as it cuts down on variables such as weather, noise and public interference, and their team also has access to useful resources such as lighting and sound equipment, as well as helpful staff.
The Oly Film Collective team would also like to add more Studio projects if they get more interested filmmakers.
WHAT Olympia Film Collective
WHERE Thurston County Media, 440 Yauger Way SW Suite C, Olympia, and
Sky Bear Media, 414 1/2 Union Ave in Olympia (in the alley behind Fishtale Ale)
HOW MUCH free