Hofstra University and the Gold Coast International Film Festival are proud to announce their popular annual event, Youth Film Day, will take place on Saturday, March 6, 2021 and will be run entirely online in an interactive virtual format. This free day of hands-on filmmaking workshops is produced by Hofstra’s Lawrence Herbert School of Communication, one of the top schools in the country for educating media and entertainment professionals, and the Gold Coast International Film Festival.
Youth Film Day is designed for students in grades 7 through 12 who have an interest in directing, producing, editing, writing, or acting, and wish to explore careers in film and television. This year, attendees will participate in interactive online workshops in cinematography; directing; special FX makeup, low budget special effects and more, led by industry professionals including Hofstra faculty and Gold Coast International Film Festival staff and board members. Participants also have an opportunity, though not required, to submit a short film to be screened for awards consideration.
“There has never been a more exciting and innovative time in the film and television arts,” said Mark Lukasiewicz, dean of the Lawrence Herbert School of Communication at Hofstra. “Young people are creating media at ever-younger ages, and exposing them to professional-level skills and techniques is a great experience for students and faculty alike.”
In addition to the workshops, Youth Film Day will also offer special interactive online panels with award-winning filmmakers, and Hofstra alumni, Kieran Valla and David and Francisco Salazar. Kieran Valla’s debut feature DELINQUENT won the grand prize at the Brooklyn Film Festival. Kieran has also written and directed pilots for Comedy Central and at TBS and is currently finishing production on an animated horror/comedy pilot for FX Networks. David & Francisco Salazar’s first film Nowhere, was hailed by Rolling Stone as “One of the Best Colombian Films of the Year.” The film won Best First Film at the Festival Villa del Cine and Best Feature Film at the OMovies Film Festival and has appeared at many other prestigious international festivals. The Salazar Brothers have also directed a number of short films. In addition to their film work, they have collaborated with BMW, Dallas Opera, the New York Opera Fest 2018, and Lenny’s Studio among others. They are also the founders of the OperaWire, a leading opera magazine.
Youth Film Day is an extension of the Gold Coast International Film Festival’s highly successful Young Filmmakers Program, which takes place every year during the annual film festival, said Caroline Sorokoff, festival director. “Our goals are to give students a clearer picture of the industry and, for those who decide to pursue careers in film or television, some practical skills and experience. Over that last three years, close to 400 students have participated in Youth Film Day. This year, we wanted to ensure students could have the same great experience, only virtually.”
Youth Film Day is part of Hofstra’s Regional Scholars program, which offers talented middle school and high school students the opportunity to explore new academic interests with scholars and college students as mentors, to spend a day or two on a college campus, and to gain an understanding of what collegiate-level work entails. The initiative supports Hofstra’s mission to encourage and nurture intellectual curiosity and learning through a free and open exchange of ideas.
Although the event is free, participants must register in advance at https://goldcoastarts.org/event/youth-film-day-21/. The program is open to students from throughout the tri-state area and beyond. More information is available on the web page.