Whether you’ve been studying film at the college, or are just savvy when it comes to the festival circuit, then you’ve no doubt heard of 48-hour film competitions, where filmmakers are given 48 hours to write, shoot and edit a short film. Whether it’s a sub-category of a larger festival, or the entire purpose of the festival itself, it’s an exercise in creativity well worth experiencing if you’re going into film.
One such event is the 48 Hour Film Project, a film competition where teams of filmmakers are given one weekend to make a film using an assigned character, prop, line of dialogue and genre. The competition was started in May 2001 when filmmaker Mark Ruppert posed the question “Would films made only in 48 hours even be watchable?” Enlisting the aid of his filmmaking partner, Liz Langston, as well as several other filmmakers in the Washington D.C. area, the experiment was conducted, with the conclusive answer being a resounding yes.
Since the there have been more than 700 competitions around the world, taking place in several cities ranging from New York City to as far as Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam.
This year, the competition comes to Salt Lake City, marking the seventh time the competition has taken place here.
The filmmaking teams competing here in Utah will pit their films against one another with only one film from Utah going on to compete against the winning films from the other 120 cities taking part in the competition.
Teams can range from being as small as one guy with a camera to as large as 116 people. The average team usually consists of 13 people, which can add up to over 325,000 participants.
While teams are being accepted into the competition on a first come/first served basis, there is still time to apply to join the competition, though your team would be put on a waitlist. (If you’re a SLCC student, you’re probably used to that.)
The late registration fee is $175.00 with the official kickoff for the competition taking place at the Broadway Center Cinemas at 111 East Broadway on May 31 at 6 p.m. After the drop-off on June 2, the completed films will premiere at the theater on June 5 and 6 at both 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. with a “Best Of” screening to follow on June 12.