Student Filmmaker Showcase

Student Filmmaker Showcase 2014

Filmmaker AttendingDATE:  Sunday Feb 16, 2014
TIME:  12:00 pm
LOCATION:  Domenico’s
PRICE:  $8 adults, $5 students   Tickets
Note: $5.00 Student Price tickets not available online. Availabe at Box Office or Venue w/ student ID.

Welcome Students!

The Beloit International Film Festival is once again proud to welcome student filmmakers to be a part of BIFF 2014’s Student Showcase! This is a special venue where BIFF highlights the talent of young filmmakers right in our own backyard, giving them a chance to receive feedback on their films from award-winning filmmakers, network with local (and international!) filmmakers, and be a part of a prestigious international film festival! Did we mention that the winning filmmakers will be announced and awarded on stage during BIFF’s exciting Launch and Laurels event?

This special showcase is completely free to enter, and it is open to teens, ages 12-18. The films will be shown during BIFF 2014 on Sunday, February 16th, at Domenico’s in Beloit. The time of the showing will be announced soon.

Your Film Screened

This is a great opportunity for teens, whether you an experienced filmmaker or just want to give this “filmmaking” thing a try! We plan to show every film submitted. Because we want to encourage young filmmakers, each film submitted will be positively critiqued by real, established filmmakers, all with the aim of encouraging the teen’s enthusiasm and excitement for continued filmmaking.

For More Information

If you have any questions along the way, please feel free to reach out to Stephen Pickering of Drywater Productions. Stephen has been working with BIFF to provide Student Filmmaking Workshops. His phone is 608-728-2456, and his email is

Student Filmmaker Showcase | 2013

How To Participate

Of course, like every contest, there are a few rules:

  • The deadline for all film submissions is January 24th.
  • Films must be directed, written, edited, and/or produced only by teens, ages 12-18. More than one teen can work on each film. In order to keep it fair and fun, additional adult involvement must be pre-approved.
  • Films must be between 3 and 5 minutes long. Opening titles and credits should be included in your film. The opening titles are included in the three to five minutes, but end credits are not.
  • Teens may only submit one film.
  • Films may be of any genre. A genre is simply the style of movie. Your movie could be a comedy, mystery, ghost movie, anything! Just be sure there’s a story!
  • Because there will be families watching these films, please keep your movies family-friendly. Films must be G or PG rated in language and subject matter or we will have to disqualify it. Films will be previewed for content. If you have a question about the rating of your film, you are welcome to upload a digital copy for approval prior to submitting the official entry. Please contact Stephen Pickering (above) with questions.
  • All editing must be done before entry is officially submitted.
  • Films can be submitted either by mailing a DVD to BIFF or simply uploading the film to YouTube (and providing BIFF with the link). Submission details are provided on the submission form. Be sure BIFF has them before the deadline.
  • If you are mailing a DVD, please note that the entries submitted to the festival will not be returned.
  • Each submission should include: entry form, synopsis, filmmaker bios, and production photo (Photo is optional).
  • Please do not use main stream music (even if you own the CD). All music must be royalty free or Non-Commercial Creative Commons (see below).
  • Films will be shown during BIFF on Sunday, February 16th at Domenico’s in Beloit.

So, what are you waiting for?! Call up your friends and get those cameras rolling!

Student Filmmaker Showcase | 2013

How To Get Started

Here are a few tips to help you out.

  • Be sure to tell a good story! Every story should have a beginning, middle, and end.
  • Take your time and do your best, but remember that it doesn’t need to be perfect.
  • You can have a story with just one actor or several actors- it’s up to you! I’ve even seen films without any actors at all (for example, a snowman or an animal). As long as there’s a story.
  • Remember how important music (or the absence of music) is. It can change your whole story. However, most film festivals do not allow copyrighted music (and most music is copyrighted). Here are a few resources to check out:
    • Freestock Music —  You can use any of this music totally free!
    • Jewel Beat —  You can use any of this music for just $2.99 per song.
    • Free Music Archive — Some of this music cannot be used “commercially” which prevents it from being used in film festivals. But some of the composers only ask they receive acknowledgement for the song/composer in your end credits. Be sure to check the Creative Commons license for each song on this site before using it.
    • Finally, if you have musically-talented friends, why not ask them to write some original music?
  • If you would like to get feedback on your film prior to submitting it officially, you are more than welcome to contact Stephen (above).

Visit Drywater Productions’ Facebook Page for more tips, and feel free to contact Stephen Pickering any time!

The Student Filmmaker Showcase is a special presentation of the best short films made by area students. Many of these films are a direct product of students participation in BIFF’s own Film Workshops for Teens lead by Stephen and Cameron Pickering of Drywater Productions. Come and check out the work of our future Spielbergs and Hitchcocks!

As a part of the Wisconsin-Illinois Showdown, the Student Filmmaker Showcase will present local student films at Domenicos Italian Restaurant at 12PM on Sunday, February 16th.

The presentation is immediately followed by a Regional Filmmaker Spotlight presentation with Stephen and Cameron Pickering of Drywater Productions. This presentation will include Drywater Productions short films and a discussion about how the Pickerings have become a successful production company in the Stateline area.

All students that wish to submit to this showcase can find a submission form on the Youth @ BIFF page.

Presented by:

The Neese Family Foundation, The Beloit Foundation,

Fairbanks Morse Engine CompanyDrywater ProductionsBeloit Public LibraryJATV