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Regent Showcase Features Top Student Films

By Amanda Morad | April 17, 2014

Robert G. Lee on stage at the 2014 Regent Showcase.
Photo by Michael Archer

Each year, Regent University's School of Communication & the Arts (SCA) hosts the Regent Showcase, a festival-style night of film screenings of the year's best student films. On Friday, April 11, the Center for Performing Arts filled nearly to capacity with people eager to watch these 10 films.

"Our students' work is among the finest I have ever seen in my 30 years in higher education," said Dr. Mitch Land, dean of SCA. "Our graduate and undergraduate students prove over and over that their cinematic artistry stands up with the best!"

This year's event featured Hollywood's top warm-up comic, Robert G. Lee, as emcee. Lee has kept audiences laughing through more than 1500 episodes of television on shows like The New Adventures of Old Christine, Just Shoot Me, Becker and The Drew Carey Show. With rapid-fire ad-libs, monologues and interviews, Lee entertains live audiences for hours between scenes and costume and set changes.

"Our team worked together to make this event one of the most memorable showcases in our history," Land said. "We thought having a successful comedian from Hollywood as emcee would make this event particularly special. Robert G. Lee kept us laughing and engaged as he introduced each film by making interesting connections with feature films from Hollywood's past."

Following the theme of "The History and Future of Filmmaking," attendees dressed up as their favorite film characters. "Each of the faculty in attendance dressed up, me as Audrey Hepburn, Dr. Gillette Elvgren as Cyrano, Sean Gaffney as Harold Lloyd, Dave Garcia as Indiana Jones, and Andrew Quicke as C.S. Lewis," said Dr. Lorene Wales, chair of SCA's Cinema-Television (CTV) department. "We hope to continue this tradition in years to come."

Friday's showcase was a grand finale to the academic year, as months of hard work from a variety of graduate and undergraduate students culminated in a celebration of cinematic professionalism, ingenuity and redemptive themes. Five graduate films from SCA, four undergraduate films from the College of Arts & Sciences (CAS), and one faculty and student collaboration rounded out the evening.

"We were delighted to make a bigger show this year so that we could reach a wider audience for our students," Wales noted. "The Regent Advancement team suggested and implemented tremendous support this year, which made a huge difference in our ability to reach out to the community and make them more aware of the event. It worked."

This year, the CTV faculty chose to honor one student with the first Faculty Choice Award. The award went to CAS junior Joseph Armstrong, for Pickpocket—a silent, black-and-white comedy about a pair of petty thieves realizing they've jeopardized a man's proposal and their hilarious efforts to correct the mistake.

"Our criteria led us to vote for the film that we felt exemplified creativity and excellent artistry," Wales explained. "Producer Rebekah Atchinson and director Joe Armstrong put together a great film in terms of great storytelling, entertainment and great cinematography—and, to boot, it was a comedy that worked well, which is hard to do."

The following films were selected for the showcase from both SCA and CAS submissions by a panel of faculty members: The Making of: Passing a Message, produced, directed and written by Ryan Pace; What it's Like, produced and directed by Andrew Ray, written by Beecher Reuning and Andrew Ray; Kip's Tips 2, produced, directed and written by Justin Garcia; The Limit, produced by Angelica Kennedy, directed by Jarrod Anderson, written by Jarrod Anderson, Brian Heath and Justin Garcia; Dream Wife, produced by April Allbritton, directed and written by Beecher Reuning; Free to Run: The Art of Parkour, produced and directed by Joseph Armstrong, written by Joseph Armstrong and Willie Moore; The Other Side, produced by Dan Nettleton, directed and written by Beecher Reuning; The Owner, produced, directed and written by Vincent Graziano; Pickpocket, produced by Rebekah Atchinson, directed and written by Joe Armstrong; and Habeas Corpus, the faculty-student collaboration produced by Lorene Wales, directed and written by SCA assistant professor, Booker T. Mattison.

To date, Regent University films have garnered nearly 350 awards at local, regional, national and international festivals.

Learn more about an undergraduate degree in animation.

Learn more about an undergraduate degree in cinema-television.

Learn more about a graduate degree in cinema-television.


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