The NYJC FilmArt Student Interest Group (SIG) emerged first runner-up in the nation-wide media competition, TwentyFour, in 2011. It was the group’s first major award since its creation.
TwentyFour is organized annually by Anglo Chinese School (Independent) to give students from film and media clubs in Singapore schools the opportunity to display their creative abilities by scripting, filming and editing a film in twenty-four hours. The theme for 2011 was “Highlight”.
Lack of experience was no obstacle for Clive, who acted in and edited the group’s entry. Although the group members had previously collaborated on two “really small films” with the club, they were nothing like the one they shot for TwentyFour.
To cope with the pressure of the 24-hour limitation, the crew took many of their shots “in transit to the [competition] venue”.
The group had to do without a microphone due to budget constraints. They shot their film almost like a silent movie to avoid having the dialogue being continually interrupted by background noise, which would have been very irritating to the viewers.
Another problem was the shortage of manpower. Having a team of 4 members meant that the maximum number of on-screen actors was 3 at any time so that the remaining member could operate the camera.
The group’s biggest challenge was having to use an online converter to reformat all 80 shots to make them compatible with the video-editing software the group was using. Chalk up the mistake to inexperience, but as Clive says, “nothing we’ve done before will prepare us for what is to come. It all boils down to effective time management and careful coordination”.
The group decided on a plot that defied societal stereotypes, making the lead male character a “cam-whore”, a role girls are more stereotypically linked with. This idea helped create the unexpected twist at the end of the story and was a key factor behind the group’s success.
Director of Photography, Rachel, was “quite surprised” to have achieved the award. She thought their film was rather “substandard” but the judges “appreciated our effects and techniques”. Also, the twist in the tale “made the entry stand out in the judges’ eyes”.
For Clive, “winning or losing did not bother” him. All he wanted was to see the completed product at the end of 24 hours and liking it.
FilmArt regularly holds its meetings every Wednesday at 3pm on level 5 in room 5-46. Interested individuals are more than welcome to join this SIG.