Official Student Media of Valencia College

Valencia Voice

Official Student Media of Valencia College

Valencia Voice

Official Student Media of Valencia College

Valencia Voice

Valencia College Hosted 29th Annual Film Celebration in March

Pictured: Q&A panel with student filmmakers at the 29th annual Valencia Film Celebration. (Aidan Foley)

Orlando, Fla. Lights, Camera, Action. Valencia College celebrated student filmmakers at the 29th annual Valencia Film Celebration on March 2.

As the festival commenced, there was fun and engagement for everyone who attended. These included concessions, specialized t-shirts, as well as other miscellaneous movie products that were available for purchase. However, the most critical, or principal, aspect of the celebration was the movie screenings. The festival featured short films made by both current and former Valencia College students that were to be screened for all attendees. Students past and present had a chance to produce films for the celebration.

“The [film] program as a whole provides so many opportunities, but especially this festival, because a lot of the students who go through Valencia College end up working in some capacity,” said Event Director Severin Hunt. 

The film festival has also been an excellent way for students throughout the years to connect, primarily due to seeing the results of the films they have made for months finally being presented in front of a large audience of people.

“… Seeing it all come together, seeing all the filmmakers, and they’re hearing the applause and the laughs as they are watching; I know they are enjoying the event we put together. That’s really what makes it all worth it,” Hunt added.

The celebration also presented a wide range of movie genres based on what type of movies the student filmmakers aspired to make. During the screenings, there were short films that were comedic, dramatic, arthouse, and many more themes that added to the diversity of the films by the students. Each screening had lengths that ran from either five minutes, to even 25-minutes long.

Film crew, journalists, and guests gather in the main hall of this year’s Valencia Film Celebration. (Aidan Foley )

Student filmmaker Luis J. Patino, directed “Trapped” which screened in the second of two blocks for the short films. “It’s just being creative and really enjoying the whole process of filmmaking with different students, “said Patino. “There’s so many of us that we can all talk about something different. Each of us enjoys something different about movies, and it’s just cool to see the different ranges everyone likes;  From romance to drama to action-adventure.”

After the screenings concluded, there were additional events. One was a filmmaking workshop hosted by the student filmmakers where all participants had the chance to learn various aspects of what goes into making a movie such as lighting and cinematography. The second event was a Q&A with the student filmmakers where the audience could ask questions regarding their films. Student filmmakers also offered advice for future students.

“Just do it. Just start off. Don’t be afraid of your first movie being perfect, because it won’t be,” explained Patino. “Learning and accepting that is probably most important, because you watch these grand films with millions of dollars and talented professionals working in the industry. Don’t compare yourself to that level.” 

The film festival and the school’s program received great praise from other faculty from the college. Film Production Professor Jed Broitman exhonerated Valencia for being one of the most affordable film programs in the state with some of the best professors and industry professionals to grow the potential of their students.

“I am most impressed with Valencia’s work…Valencia’s film work is on par with anybody and everybody no matter the cost.” Broitman continued, ” I enjoyed it. They’re always pleasant students, it’s always a mix of good students, and it’s hands on.” 

“Because film schools are pricey, Valencia is just as good if not better. For the price, you’re getting the best deal, I would argue, in the country. High-end studio work, professional people you’re working with, and hands-on experience, so you can’t beat it. It’s excellent,” Broitman continued.

Valencia College is expected to host their 30th annual film festival in Spring 2025.

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