Film fest shows ‘different angles of life’

By Jeremia Schrock
Sun Star Reporter

Yulena Petkova-Palmer holds a pair of awards for her music video “Stumbling Upon a Dream.” Petkova Palmer won both the Peoples Choice Award and the Jurors Choice award at the UAF Student FILM FEST 2010 – Winter. Dec. 11, 2010. Jeremia Schrock / Sun Star

The UAF Student Film Club hosted their first ever Red Carpet gala and film screening on Saturday, Dec. 10 in the Lee Salisbury Theater. The event showcased 16 films by student and faculty filmmakers. Only the student films were eligible for awards.

Despite the Salisbury being largely empty, the event garnered approximately 50 attendees. In spite of the small attendance, the Film Club saw the event as a success. “I think it went really well,” said Kalesha Pearson, the Film Club vice president. “We had some really good submissions this year and that’s really what’s important.”

When asked if she had a favorite, filmmaker Kavelina Torres (who directed the submission “I Am”) said that she couldn’t pick just one.  “I could be biased and say ‘I like mine!’ but they were all so good and from different angles of life.”

The Film Club was founded in 1992 when the film minor was first offered at UAF. “People make films so that others can see them. It is critical for filmmakers to have an opportunity to show their work to an audience,” said Maya Salganek, an assistant professor of digital performance media at UAF, who has been the club’s advisor since 2008.

“Films are ideas, and a filmmaker wants to hear from an audience if that idea is transmitted well or not,” Salganek continued. “Plus, it’s just so much fun to have an opportunity to see that filmmakers are here in Fairbanks, that they are making stuff and having fun, and making engaging work.”

The festival debuted comedies, music videos for local bands, documentaries, dramatic and educational films.
The winner of both the People’s Choice Award and the Juror’s Choice Award for best film was “Stumbling Upon a Dream” by Brian Palmer and Yelena Petkova-Palmer. The film was actually a music video composed and shot on location in Alaska. Palmer directed the video while Petkova-Palmer composed the music and starred in it.

Prior to the screening, Salganek mentioned her excitement at seeing Petkova-Palmer’s film on the big screen, saying she felt the film was “beautifully shot.”

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