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College of the Ozarks film students to debut films at Branson IMAX on December 8

POINT LOOKOUT, MO. — College of the Ozarks video production majors and alumni will debut three short films and a trailer at Branson IMAX on Dec. 8 at 9:45 pm. The event is free of charge and the public is welcome to attend.

This event serves as a capstone night for many of the video production majors at C of O and allows the students to celebrate their successes in the company of alumni, friends, families, and guests. To help students enjoy the night and celebrate their accomplishments, the night has a red-carpet theme complete with photographers and two private theaters.

“We feel very honored to be able to have our films shown and have the support from family, friends, peers, and the community,” said Maddie Main, senior video production major and director of Hiraeth. “It's a capstone night for so many of us to showcase our hard work that correlates with our major.”

“C of O worked with the Branson IMAX in 2021 when two students, Verve Reposar and Zach Bliss (’22) produced a film titled ‘Calypso’s Island,’” said Curt Wilkinson, professor of communication arts, Ph.D. “The students were excited to share their work with the rest of the C of O community, and someone suggested we pursue the possibility of showing it at the local IMAX Theater. That first year, we filled one theater. The next year, 2022, we filled two theaters with our second short film, “Bridge Burners,” directed by Paige Jones (’23). These films are produced as a class project through our Media Production Practicum course, and we usually have 15-20 students in the class.”

Three films and a trailer for this year’s film project will be premiered at the event:

“To the Pines,” written and directed by Jackson Bliss
“Ruby,” written by Josh Williams and directed by Jordan Carr
“Hiraeth,” written and directed by Maddie Main
“What Is Happiness?” written and directed by Hannah Wortman

Students, staff, and alumni contributed in all capacities to the project as actors, directors, camera operators, and composers, making these projects a celebration of the work of many students. By working on a large-scale project, students learned how to work in creative teams, developed new skills, and will carry valuable production experience into their future careers.

“I wish I had a course like this when I was in college,” said Media Production Professor Curt Wilkinson, PhD.  “Our media production students are incredibly gifted, and they have embraced this opportunity to produce some of the best college-level filmmaking I have ever seen. We can be proud of our media production students here C of O. They are the next generation of storytellers, and they understand how much our world needs stories of hope.”

“This night is also an opportunity to show what we have learned at College of the Ozarks as video majors, music majors, and theater majors,” Main said. “It's very surreal to sit in a theater and see all your hard work and creation shown to so many people. This moment is one that we will never forget.”

The above press release is from College of the Ozarks.

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