North Hopkins High School students Breeanna and Brennen Hicks’ short film has advanced two rounds, and if it passes one more will be a finalist to compete at the state level in the traditional animated category of the UIL Young Filmmakers Festival this year.
“They passed the preliminary round to the quarterfinals at the end of January and, we just found out this weekend that they advanced to the semifinal round. One more round until state. We will find out if they advance to the finals on Feb. 22,” noted North Hopkins teacher Jenifer Lucas.
The UIL Young Filmmakers contest features four different categories: narrative, documentary, computer/digital animation; and traditional, (such as claymation, hand-drawn or stop motion animation). Narrative and documentary films must be 3-7 minutes in length, including credits. Animation entries must be 30 second to 3 minutes in length, including credits.
The Hicks’ animated film is almost 1 minute, 30 seconds long, and features an animated Lego man, who tries out several jobs, before finding one suited to him.
“The only problem is, he can’t seem to accomplish anything without destroying everything in his path. As a construction worker, he does more demolition than building. While being a part time actor, he forgets all of his lines. Driving a taxi isn't much better, when you run off the road. But, determined not to give up, our character is unwilling to stop in his endeavor to find the right job. Surely there is someone out there who has a job that fits his special abilities,” the YouTube synopsis for the short reads.
“Help Wanted” was written by 10th grader Breeanna Hicks. She and her ninth grade brother Brennen collaborated to create, animate, edit and film the short film, which includes instrumental music but no other sound.
Films submitted to the festival are previewed, critiqued and ranked by event adjudicators. Scoring is based on originality, cinematic storytelling and technical execution. Entries will go through a preliminary round. Those qualifying go through a second qualifying round. Those qualifying from the second round go to the state semi-final round. Those entries advancing to state in each category will be screened, in whole or in digest form, and ranked first through sixth at the State Festival. Schools receive a written evaluation of the film via e-mail at each level.
“Help Wanted” can be viewed online at www.youtube.com/watch?v=VX7W7JJ0nU8&t=1s.
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