BYU students gathered at the Varsity Theater to create their own adaptation of the 1927 public domain production at the Public Domain Film and Music Festival on January 20th.
Students select public works based on a draft system and have 10 days to create a film, present it in front of a panel of judges, and compete for a $3,000 prize.
Alfred Hitchcock’s film The Ring, Agatha Christie’s novel The Big Four, and Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Complete Works of Sherlock Holmes are among the selection of works that participants can choose from. was
According to the Public Domain Film and Music Festival homepage, the festival began in 2019, with the BYU Copyright Licensing Office partnering with the BYU College of Fine Arts and Communications to celebrate the arrival of new public domain works released in 1924. Together we hosted the event. Students were given 48 hours to create an original film based on the public domain of their choice.
Over the years, the festival has grown from a small, few-day event to a full-blown 10-day event featuring films made by students from BYU’s College of Art and Music and School of Music.
This year, students from both BYU and BYU-Idaho were given the opportunity to participate in the festival. This is part of the Copyright Licensing Office’s efforts to expand the festival to other secondary institutions.
Kenny Baldwin, Operations Assistant Director of the Copyright Licensing Office, explains how the festival is preparing for further growth. “We haven’t expanded it yet, but conversations with similar schools are starting to develop, and hopefully more schools will be able to participate,” Baldwin said.
According to Baldwin, the Copyright Licensing Office started the public domain film and music festival because they wanted to create a fun event where students could learn about copyright law and how to apply it to real-world projects.
“Our aim with this festival is to try to give students a hands-on learning experience on rights management, as they will face the rest of their careers in the creative field.” He said.
Bruce Brockett, the captain of the competing team, finds the challenge of a short film deadline to be a fun opportunity.
“Projects often drag on, so I’m excited about the opportunity to get the film done so quickly. ,” says Brockett.
According to Nelson Makechnie, another team captain, the pressure to make a short film in such a short amount of time can be a daunting task for students who work and attend classes every day. Learning to balance all this time is a very important factor for students to be successful.
“It’s just a matter of time. Even with school and work, I find time. I’m into art and I want to make the best films I can,” Makechnie said.
The festival also helps students network and build relationships with other creatives in their chosen field, Baldwin said. The festival builds these relationships and gives them the opportunity to work as a team and complete tasks on time.
Participant Tim Ballard said, “One of the perks of working on this project is just being close to people who are doing the same things as you.”
According to Public Domain Films, the 2022 festival will feature more than 100 attendees and over 350 screenings, as well as a panel of eminent judges, including Hollywood producer Shane Stanley, known as the producer of “Gridiron Gun.” and was the most successful one to date. and music festival website.
Baldwin said the 2023 event will see Shane Stanley returning as a judge, building on the success of last year’s festival.
Participant Larkin Lewis said he was thrilled to share his film with a high-profile producer like Stanley. “I think it’s a great opportunity. It’s also more motivation to do better. I don’t think it’s debilitating or scary,” Lewis said.
The finished film will be released on January 30th at 5pm. A public screening event will be held on February 10th from 7pm to 8:30pm, where the winners will be announced.