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Festival Offers Showcase For Summer Films

Festival Offers Showcase For Summer Films

Entries sought from across New Zealand

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As the family camcorder comes out of the cupboard for summer, young New Zealanders are being offered the chance to demonstrate their film-making skills.

The 'Reel Short' Festival, scheduled to take place in Auckland during March 2006, will be offering a showcase for films of ten minutes or less duration, made by young people between the ages of 13 and 18.

The festival is being organised by the long-established, not-for-profit organisation, Youthtown, as part of its programme of providing young people with opportunities to express themselves, develop skills and build self-esteem.

"Digital technology has placed the ability to make films into the hands of a huge percentage of New Zealanders. We want to encourage the young people amongst them to make creative use of either this new technology or of more traditional film cameras, during the summer holiday period.

"In addition, if you're already planning to do something creative with a movie camera, digital or otherwise, we're offering you the opportunity to put your work on display rather than shooting it and then burying it in a drawer at home," says Youthtown's Youth Programme Co-ordinator, Rebecca Duell.

"The festival is NOT a competition. Our goal is to encourage people to make films and we want to show as many of them as possible, although there will be an informal 'Viewers Choice' award, for the most popular film shown during the festival.

"To be accepted into the festival, all a film requires is to be under the stipulated maximum length, to have a theme or structure and to meet certain minimum technical requirements," she says.

Rebecca adds that the Reel Short Festival will be the first Youthtown event in many years developed with national participation in mind instead of just being focussed on Aucklanders.

"Whether they are in Tauranga, Timaru or Tapanui, the chances are that young people will be out and about over the summer period, looking for creative ways to spend their time. Wherever you are, we want to hear from you. And that goes for Aucklanders too!

"Most of those entering work into the festival will probably see film-making primarily as a hobby. But the event could well provide people from the film industry with the opportunity to see what young New Zealanders are capable of doing. And,who knows, the next Peter Jackson, Niki Caro or Andrew Adamson might be out there, waiting for an opportunity like this to get noticed," she says.

All entries to the Reel Short Festival need to be received by Youthtown by 28th February 2006, for showing on 10th March.

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