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Youth Filmmaking

Apr 3, 2010|

A discussion with Jon "J.P." Palanuk, creator and producer of the Youth Silent Film Festival about his event, part of the upcoming Rose Festival Festivities.

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

You're listening to mattress go to a series of interviews with people of interest in northwest Oregon and southwest Washington I'm your host Ted -- total -- movies right. But here's something you might not know the world of filmmaking isn't reserved simply for the denizens of Hollywood. Portland actually has a pretty -- filmmaking community in fact if you take time to look for them you can find screenings of locally made full length or short films on an almost weekly basis organizations like film action organ and the northwest films that are constantly trying to promote and inspire local filmmakers. And it's and that spirit that local philanthropist John JP talent that created the youth silent film festival happening June 6 through the night at -- Hollywood Peter as part of the upcoming rose festival events. To discuss this exciting event I have with me today mr. Allen himself how are you next. I'm good Ted thanks -- Clinton do I call you John or JP once you commie JP all right. And I know my friends out there their eyes are on the back of their head every time somebody calls -- it slams are for real champion kind of fits right in -- JPMorgan well OK to still. Ticket and clearly you're probably just a billionaire with tons of money you spend -- out they're doing good works for good causes all the time like a philanthropist well you know I think philanthropy is an important part of a lot of people people's lives and I take that on and I think that's a compliment and -- yeah you've got to be innovative and this is gonna project that is really rewarded me in a lot of ways. Excellent now -- didn't get things a couple of us give our listeners a little bit of background on yourself and what you do when you're not inspiring young filmmakers. Well I I was in the medical software business medical management business and sold that company a few years back. And everybody told me at the time that you'd get bored undermine after a couple of years and go crazy foresight group whose death now it suggests that anybody goes and her retirement -- -- that fact it's true. I did I lost my mind and I found I needed a purpose for -- worked on a film festival pass. And then I had an opportunity to attend a fund raiser for powerhouse of Portland. Where they recreated the old pizza grinder restaurants -- -- -- -- and this gentleman -- Richard Lawson had this beautiful organs you organism -- interim and they -- four different organist plays did the Oregon and I didn't know what to expect and then -- -- and got up and play the organ and he's an eighteen year old to my musical phenom -- -- prodigy one of those great talents that you see a new. You're your -- drops and he plays that the your organs for this crowd. And I thought to myself that is the coolest thing yeah and I'll start a loss start so I thought okay here's this teenager he's playing an old. Instrument that nobody ever -- anymore. How can something be done and dust was born the sound some social so this is -- the festival four children. Yeah it is I I. I went to Helen Thomas at northwest on Saturday asked. Great organization and we started brainstorming and thought this venue for this the perfect venue for this would be the Hollywood theater the grand old Hollywood theater which is refurbishing terrorists here Oregon as we speak. So as we started talking about the venue. We realize that through Portland junior Rose Parade goes down sandy boulevard right in front of the Hollywood theater. So restart. And started knocking around the idea of having this a youth festival then we met with -- Alan -- on -- who is the head of film national -- their offices are there at the Hollywood -- They love -- organization great organization do an amazing things to promotes you know there -- a film in our community. Course they love the idea from him and so we've focused on making this a used to orient as per -- so. Those that can participate must be twenty years or younger as of June 15 two this year threat because Nathan is an eighteen year old he will actually be. Plane at the organ lies at the theater for the finalists films that will be strange but -- Their kids making these movies you have provided the music that he would be playing on the website that's right I want to recreate the sound movie. So to give some structure to this process by a commission that may send to compose. Five personal scores. Oh why -- got to know they know he actually made those soundtracks original composition wow yeah wow I get the guy's amazing he's absolutely amazing. Brilliant young man and I know he's going to go foreigners like he's had a blast taking on this project. So he he he scored these five compositions there on the website. The participants will go to make silent film dot com. That's make silent film dot com. And on the home -- still see a button for a listen download musical themes Dell listened to the five different scenes that are there are needs genres the genre -- created one for horror. One for action adventure wonderful romance there's five different once -- out and did the idea is that kids will find or the filmmaker you'll find music that they love them. Then they will design. Their film. Around that musical piece threat when they submitted still submit it with the the music dubbed onto to this film and that's how will judge them but if they are named a finalist. Don't get to see their film on the big screen. With mason playing the organ. Is accompanying their self. Very very cool I think I think it this kind of cool actually add that this is an experienced you know except a lost art is -- and experience you just don't have any more specially. Mean the last bastion of that in town was the old organ grinder restaurant which went out of business like fifteen years ago something like that right there where you could go and watch these holds. Classic silent films -- -- Charlie Chaplin Buster Keaton whoever and they would play them live their for the audience and as a child going to that. Bet it was and. -- yeah I remember going to shake -- -- yeah yeah it would make -- the old classic silent movies to. I opened up the creative process for the kids out there to do any kind is film may want you can't be black and white -- can be color. It can be live action you can be animation. They just need to follow submission guidelines and not use any copyrighted material. And also they're not allowed to modifying the sound attractive to the musical -- -- to have all because. When the so misplayed its going to be played choose a musical scene they selected and you want these films to be three minutes and likes to. Yet they have to follow with three minutes flanks that's the -- -- links the soundtrack and you will. So a very simple guidelines to follow that beyond that there's no entry fee and the creative process is designed to be as open and as flexible as possible fantastic. And then didn't you can sign up there at make silent film dot com. What is the deadline the deadline for submitting your film -- -- is may first I say we will need any of months period of time to do use the -- were anticipating quite a few films to come in and indeed judging process is -- -- full process and here's another thing it's exciting I -- I really wanted to direct this to you not only the filmmakers but parents and grandparents out there. That are hearing this these works the finalists will be judged by three. Hollywood industry executives to allow the process of going into a creative production of the film has its own benefits the students out there that participate or so going to learn. What it means to you follow submission guidelines ran -- what it means to your project and meet a deadline these are skill sets. That are gonna serve them well in their entire life regardless of whether they -- -- summer not now. Let's say they really wanna going to film and imagine if you're one the top ten films after we go through her our first a large juries process. The top ten then go to Hollywood -- Tom to Santo was a writer producer of the transformers movies X-Men -- X man -- Is one of the jurists. We'll slouch no slouch there del shores and news writer director producer actor private lives been unwilling Grey's -- -- -- You know and another. Productive than brilliant Hollywood mine is also going to be judged them while cheerio Quinn who's the creator rom publisher of star -- magazine stand Gloria Mad Magazine. Senate magic's future life he is going to be seeing these in judging the so if you really do you have an interest in and sell home. The exposure to diesel this level of Hollywood talent senior worse I can't imagine where to throw them -- people worked their whole lives to get an opportunity. Exactly exactly and these industry leaders. Have -- Absolutely thrilled by the prospect of seeing these works. It's amazing I'm kinda speechless and wish that I was under 22 person. Any new broad -- interesting point about this developing skill -- you'll use your whole life. I myself have been involved in a sketch comedy group for years and years and years and we make short films we put on stage shows. -- -- Every bit of the skills that I have been built up producing those works. I use in my everyday work life but no question -- like to see there's a deadline to hit. There's also you know if you if you give a kid who would be instant putting this together. They're gonna have to put together a crew there have to put find actors to DNA they're gonna have to write it -- edit it did you all these things and that. -- been a fairly large process and the skills it takes to put that together and to put all those pieces into place so that you get a decent outcome. Is as a skills that you will use your whole life. Today I can't agree with you more and that's why I'm really thankful to your radio station for. Having us on board here who we we only have one months before the may first submission deadline hits. And I did some focus groups with -- kids to pass them. If we were designing this contest to properly and -- the questions I have for them is how Long Will it take you -- to -- price three men had. Silent movie. And a lot of the kids were in film classes at some art magnet high schools and headsets generally it's an hour or a minute. So they were thinking three hours I would say two weeks is. Safe amount time to jump into this -- If you're out there hearing about this for the first time more parents and Graham parents if you're calling your kids that are out there that some might wanna participate I think they can still do it. The -- and the motivation to do this is not only the fact that. -- lifelong skill sets are going to be. Reached I've increased the wheels with cash prize and all that doesn't hurt Ted we know cash were raised as casually girl as silly for kids a little bit of cash goes a long way a lot of the to cash. The real well I think it is a good amount of cash -- the first prize is 1000 dollars a mannequin imagine meaning kids get a grant for the second prize is 500. In third prize is 250 and that's cash so the kids can do with that what ever they want it's not a scholarship it's not designated funds its money. And hopefully these fans will be used in the way that sick continues to further the good works that these these filmmakers during and then those prizes are given to -- -- so that cash can be dispersed within the team however they would like exactly I mean some films. Who we've got one or entries I saw the other -- it was a wonderful entry and I think there were approximately four students involved a man who. Good to clarify the film maker. Or makers must be twenty years old or younger the actors -- -- that they have their films can be any edge both okay Brett. But the filmmakers the ones that are writing the script -- mean the action directing and basically producing a whole film. Those -- the folks that need to be twenty years old is able behind -- camera that these look like school is exactly it's their creation it's a youth creative product. So you get the finalists they're sent off to be judged by these Hollywood executives and insiders. And then they come back here for the screening itself and that screening is June 6 -- the -- over four days how many films are going to be shown over that time. Right again we're going to make silent film dot com going to the process will get the submissions the in jury here -- Portland which consists of folks from northwest film senator. Film action or again myself. And it's and a -- and the organist and -- ten Hauser from town -- film archives. Will pare down to the top twelve films say. Those twelve films will be burned onto a master disk and set down to Tom dissent until short cure real Quinn. They'll go through their formal scoring process. And then shoot back to us chewed the first second and third prize winners are. You can also buy your tickets for the event that make silent film dot com and the screenings will start on June 6. Will screen about fifteen films per night on June 6 seventh eighth and ninth. -- the end up on Saturday night June 12. We will have this screening awards ceremony. This is something the rose festival asks us to do and I should mention that make silent film dot com and the use silent film festival. Our separate organizations. From the rose festival however. When I design this. I said to myself okay. I can see kids running into the living room. Saying mom and dad Wanamaker Thelma limited Thelma and this contest in them they're good the parents saying go back and he algebra right if they could say a bit it's a rose festival official events. That would give it a Stanley is some kind of -- -- does say wait a second let's really consider what's going on record. Clear there was just cause a great reputation may only support activities and events that they think could support their overall mission which is to. Informant educated and hand them grow the -- cultural class of our city. -- days love deciding whom they jumped all over exactly have been throwing resource is that it making this one of their. Key outreach marketing programs for younger audience for the rose festival in general. They have access to -- Screen the awards films at the Saturday June 12 screening of them from one rose which is a film the rose festival commission a couple of years ago. And then also the superintendent of organ public schools also through endorsement and this right -- Cust DO San around emails on her newsletter to you every instructor in the state encouraged undertaken massive it is opportunities are really. The message -- wanted to get out to the parents and grandparents out there is. This really is a valuable educational process it's being recognized by its leaders -- educational system and if you mansion your child or grandchild participating in this. What a wonderful dvd to add to their colleagues so -- sure -- Or letter indicating they were a finalist in the contest it's a it's a good thing all the way around. And I know a lot of parents her very touchy and then cautious about what they get their children -- involved in because there's a lot of programs out there that maybe aren't so great. But here you've got the superintendent of -- boulder school sign off rose hostile sign off film action organ northwest film -- etc. this is a valuable tool. It's the real deal yet. So what we're going to do is every night we will announce one film. Out of that night that made it to the award screening I -- Seville before films that will be coming in chewed the awards screening on June 12. So when the filmmakers come in -- will of course communicate with the filmmakers what tonight there -- screen is today can bring all their friends and family and and see their works on the big screen so these are different -- different set of films will be shown each night each night a different set of some -- going to be able to screen live up to sixty. That's 60 of the entries were expecting. Significantly more than map but. The top sixty filmmakers won't get to see their film on the big screen and that's just an incredible experience you know it is -- -- when I asked these focus groups of students what word the motivating factors it had nothing to do with the money. Their biggest motivation to create and participate in this process. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Each night those fifteen. Films -- screen nobody's gonna know who made it to the finalists that night so after the screen means a done. Will announce who unlike final Swanson -- becomes thrilling to know that your coming up then you're ready to receive your award. And then on the twelfth on Saturday will be rescreening nose and announce the winners and present the cash to them at that time. All right let's get into use some of these specifics about what's expected from each filmmaker on it like the rules basically you were for these films. They have to be three minutes cruising along with the soundtrack to correct predetermined. And you go to make silent film dot com to hear those can download them so you can edit them right into your film when you submit it. That's correct so go to the website make silent film dot com you're gonna see some old buttons the first one is submission guidelines. -- -- guidelines will tell you what you can and cannot -- again the creative process is wide open -- there's no entry fee. The film's got to be three minutes long. It can't have any copyrighted material whom it needs to be G rated in family friendly that's an -- had a question from a filmmaker who's doing a horror film. -- -- -- yeah -- -- now that's gonna tell us the you know sometimes horror films pushed the envelope you know back in the twenties the first horror films that you view them today they're all G rated right so were still sticking to Oregon insane -- meet this requirement on my favorite scary movie role. Time is from 1963. It's the haunting. And there's not a special effect and it. Men it is terrifying bright and still -- to this day as a Halloween tradition for me. -- to sit down at the end of the night of whatever events we've gone nuts dude actually sit down home. Make some popcorn watch Fontaine and it scared to death itself you don't have to be gross no you don't have to be gross to make a horror films so. Relieve those are the only major restrictions on this and of course the age restriction. And so then you'll see on the website from the homepage -- submission form. And that's filled out by the filmmaker and signed off by a guardian and submitted with the cell. And again the deadline would be may first then. As part of the process of after understanding the submission guidelines shall go to did to listen and download music seems. You can listen to those tracks third just push the play button associated with each of the five tracks decide which one of Nathan's original compositions your level with. Senior minder film being recreated -- around are being created around that song from her that's step composition. And then creature felt. She kind of working backwards there those lot of times making movies first and -- -- set the score but that's part of this challenged rice is today go back and said something to this music fresh. It is silent film the traditional sense you know sound effects no sound effects no modification of the music whatsoever so then and -- seeking of course and then you wanna have some title cards. -- traditional. Silent movies have a title Kurd that signal say you know. Here comes the train or her a look out for that that's were were asking that at least three title cards be used to. And one of those is an introduction of the filmmaker their name and their age and the name of their film and then you can have. This may title cards inside the film -- you can't have dialogue just needs to be silent and correct correct. Excellent and and are people limited to submitting only one film no you can submit as many films as you like single craziness I say your general ideas if you got several ideas and you've got the time it's a cement them. Absolutely go forth that gives you a greater opportunity to win. And there's also not a limitation to how many people are involved in a group corporate crooks get absolutely but there is the one cash price for first second and third place correct and you distress -- -- got if you got twenty people on the film you're not gonna get Tony thousand dollars after an hour stretching and -- a thousand have to split it up and were not involved in that that's the filmmakers duty. I say. If I mean we -- retirement kids here they may not be familiar with silent films and that genre is there a good place they can find some examples. We do have links on our web site to. -- townhouse or film archives and there are easy ways to you Google search for silent film. But again -- it's a new day. And I won the filmmakers out there to make this their own right in other words if it's not sure you're mother's casserole. It's it's a totally new invention. And imagination of what. A silent movie can be and I am chomping at the bit to see the entries were going on I think because they are kids who haven't been exposed to this you're not gonna see someone tied to the railroad tracks does that did not know each -- -- and or you might -- -- but it's well they don't have that predisposition to know that thank thank you do whatever they want it. Now here's something else I -- mention a test. Again as I talked to friends of mine that are in the arts community I've heard from some of the larger well known stamps companies in -- -- you talks -- business over the last week. In Tran dance company who. Disease. When they learned I was doing this have tossed out the idea have you seen some of these solemn. For backgrounds for dance performances while I think -- what I'm saying is I believe that these films are going to live beyond the festival. And to again a great way for young filmmaker makers to get even more exposure with there -- -- product very cool down. You know what I minute I'm gonna go ahead and throw this out I have a sketch comedy group called the third floor that has been around in town for the past fourteen years and we've got a number of comic performers. If there is somebody listening out there -- a group of kids who would like to use this as performers in one of their shorts and I do a lot of submissions so I may just have to -- quarter two. But you can contact me -- microscope that entercom.com. -- -- wants to be in the movie I wanna be in the movies causality on the big screen he must be on the big screen why -- -- next Tom Hanks right here ladies and tell them that. Then of course I had bad guy may be speaking out of turn 'cause I haven't actually spoken to the group about this -- it's certainly gives chat Yahoo! so how does one go about. They've they've been here in this the sounds great to them they wanna sign up what's the process log on to make silent film dot com. It guide you right to process if you have any questions you can email us those questions from the website the -- And more get right back tube so that's that's pretty straightforward they're counting -- you can find out all this information you can download the music can find out all the guidelines. You can find some resources if you're not sure exactly what all this means all of it can be found and make silent film dot com. And get -- -- is the deadline is may first. And we're it's looking for kids who will twenty years or younger as of June 15 of this year that's right that's it and if someone wants to just attend the event where they buy tickets. Well that's a good question we've added an audience award to -- this is -- are no other filmmakers out there are gonna try to get as many of their friends to it to come as they can. You buy tickets. Are online at box office tickets dot com we've got a link. On our homepage for purchasing tickets. Hands I can't remember the price we set I think it's just ten bucks for adults and eight bucks for for kids -- actually brought in less than a regular movie now oh yeah he it's a very affordable again this is all about making it accessible to -- not only did filmmakers with no entry fee but also to the audiences to see this. So that is open now when tickets are available to you purchase online excellent. Well we are running out of time I like to thank you so much for coming on the show today John sink you in your your station for helping us get the word out so and were so excited it's you have your perspiration and see you wrapped the movie. Yes well I I know whether I end up in one of these are not I will definitely be there in attendance checking out this this sounds fascinating -- Ted excellent -- that'll do it for another addition a mattress company Entercom communications public affairs program I've been your host Ted Douglas. If given nonprofit or public affairs organization that you would like to let others know about please email me at microscope @entercom.com. And intercom starts and he. And please put microscope in the subject lines it does not get snagged from my spam filter. Or can go directly to the station's website click on the community link and submit your information there also if you'd like here this program again you can visit our podcast page at -- just go PDF -- com where you'll find this in the last couple months worth of episodes and feel free to post it to your FaceBook your MySpace your blog what have you -- -- get this information out to as many people responsible. Thanks again JP thank you lost so much for listening this has been metrostars. Or. Okay.