The Student Academy Awards
It was a fun week but it was time to get down to business… the Student Academy Awards medal presentations. The presenters! Academy President Tom Sherak, Laura Dern (“Jurassic Park”), Greg Kinnear (“As Good As It Gets”), Mena Suvari (“American Beauty”), and Cuba Gooding Jr. (“Jerry Maguire”). Alternative Amanda Tasse (USC) - “The...
ASC Cinematographers Give Advice
The SAA Winners also got to go to the American Society of Cinematographers Clubhouse this week. First came a delicious lunch, with lots and lots of mingling: After the yummy lunch, an incredible collection of legendary cinematographers sat down and answered a question from every winner and their DP guest. The panel was: Christopher Baffa Stephen H. Burum Haskell Wexler Victor...
SAA Winners at the Board of Governors Dinner
The Board of Governors dinner is where the Student Academy Award Winners get to meet the Academy’s Board of Governors. There are five tables and five courses. The governors sit stationary and the winners switch table at each course, being forced to mingle with everyone. It’s like speed-dating for Oscars. Everyone had a lot of fun. Especially Woody.
AFI Rivalry: Justin Tipping vs. Ryan Prows
A funny thing happened this year at the Student Academy Awards. Two of the winners in the Narrative Category, Justin Tipping and Ryan Prows, were peers at the American Film Institute. That means they were in classes together, hung out together, and made their projects simultaneously. In their year at AFI, over 100 scripts were submitted and pitched. Only 25 made it through production,...
SAA SNAPSHOTS: Euro 2012
Student Academy Awards tonight? Who cares, it’s Portugal vs Germany! To see more photos from this week’s action, check out other SAA Snapshots.
SAA Winners at Dreamworks Animation
Like they weren’t doing enough cool stuff, the Student Academy Award Winners were invited to a screening at Dreamworks Animation. Director Steve Hickner, of DreamWorks Animation introduced this years SAA winning animated shorts and everyone had a blast watching: Here are two of this year’s animation winners, David Wolter and Eric Prah: Oh no, man down! Then everyone was given...
SAA SNAPSHOTS: Around the WGA
Just some Student Academy Award Winners roaming the Writer’s Guild: The gang gathered around: Look at all these scripts! Animation winner Eric Prah: Narrative winner Mark Raso: Foreign winner Thomas Stuber: Documentary winner Heather Burky: Documentary winner Keiko Wright too busy for a photo op: And alternative winner Amanda Tasse sneaking up on several Academy Award...
Screenwriting Advice from the WGA
Fade in: The SAA winners got a chance to sit down with seasoned writers for a long, frank discussion on screenwriting. The panel of WGA writers consisted of: Howard A. Rodman (“Savage Grace”, “August”) Scott Alexander (“Ed Wood,” “The People vs. Larry Flynt”) Christopher McQuarrie (“The Usual Suspects,” “The Tourist”) Craig Mazin (“The Hangover, Part II,” “Scary Movie” 3...
Student Academy Award Welcome Reception
With all the SAA winners in town, it was time to officially welcome them. And what better place than at the Academy’s Margaret Herrick Library? After delicious appetizers (the big hit was the Asian beef in a spoon), the winners and Academy members sat down in the Bob Hope Lobby and were welcomed by program director Rich Miller: Followed by an introduction by Student Academy Awards...
SAA SNAPSHOTS: Creepy Paperweight
Joseph Stefano kept a creepy skeleton paperweight on his desk while he was writing Psycho. It is now an artifact at the Writer’s Guild and documentary winner Ellen Tripler posed with it: Narrative winner Ryan Prows also posed with it. And narrative winner Justin Tipping wanted nothing to do with it: To see more photos from this week’s action, check out other SAA Snapshots.
Cary Fukunaga is "It" →
More Student Academy Award Alumni in the this SAA week. Cary Fukunaga (who won the Student Academy Award Silver Medal in the narrative category in 2005 for “Victoria Para Chino”) is signed on to adapt and direct an adaptation of Stephen King’s “It” into two films.
Student Academy Award Winners Visit The Academy's...
The Academy’s Margaret Herrick Library is an insanely cool place. It’s the world’s preeminent cinema research facility and holds more than 80,000 screenplays, 42,000 original movie posters, 10 million photographs and 1,100 special collections (and some awesome people working there who can’t wait to show you them). Everyone was welcomed into the Margaret Harrick Library,...
Student Academy Award Winners Holding Oscar
Over lunch today, the SAA winners were given a real Oscar statue to pass around and pose with. Due to superstition, some refused to touch it, but here’s some photos of the brave ones who did:
SAA SNAPSHOTS: At the Airport
Academy staff members Lori and Debbie picking up Student Academy Award winners from the airport: Heather Burky and Ellen Tripler, documentary winners, waiting for their baggage… and their Academy Awards. To see more photos from this week’s action, check out other SAA Snapshots.
SAA SNAPSHOTS: Before/After Winning
Ryan Prows and wife Megan Southwell show us their “long hours of production” faces: Ryan and Megan show us their “Ryan just won a Student Academy Award” faces: To see more photos from this week’s action, check out other SAA Snapshots.
What Student Academy Award Winners Wish Successful...
Since we already asked this year’s Student Academy Award Winners to share their advice for aspiring filmmakers, we thought it would be fun to turn it around and also ask them what they wish established filmmakers would do. Here’s some of what they had to say… Amanda Tasse: “Since you have money, why not be experimental? Try different things. Go into TV or video...
Advice for Aspiring Filmmakers From Student...
Some of this year’s Student Academy Award winners were nice enough to pass on a little advice to aspiring filmmakers. Here’s what they had to say… Heather Burky: “Find the story first and make sure it’s a good one. Nothing else matters if your story sucks.” Mark Raso: “Call yourself a filmmaker and make films. Work hard to hone the craft, practice...
Meet Justin Tipping
Justin Tipping - American Film Institute - Narrative Winner Backstory From El Cerrito, California, Justin Tipping has always been a creative guy. Movies were always a big family pasttime and his family went to see everything. Justin started on his directing path by recreating GI Joe and X-Men battles with his action figures. In middle school, Justin and his friends would record hip-hop...
Meet David Wolter
David Wolter - California Institute of the Arts - Animation Winner Backstory From Colorado Springs, CO, David Wolter is 6’10.” He was always expected to play basketball but that didn’t pan out. However, all the doodling and cartooning he did during classes paid off. At his undergrad, Augustana, David created a highly popular comic strip, “The Back Alley.” ...
Meet Ellen Tripler
Ellen Tripler - American University - Documentary Winner Backstory From Bethesda, MD, Ellen Tripler did a lot of photography in high school. In college, not only was film one of her majors but she also held a job as a projectionist in three different movie theaters. Afterwards, she went on a trip to Europe and didn’t return for fifteen years. After getting married, having two kids,...
Meet Ryan Prows
Ryan Prows - American Film Institute - Narrative Winner Backstory From Atlanta, Georgia, one of the first films that Ryan Prows made was “Garcia y Carlitos”, a short crime film for his high school Spanish class. His assignment was only to record him and his classmate saying phrases in Spanish. Around the same time, “Pulp Fiction” came out and made Ryan want to pursue...
Meet Heather Burky
Heather Burky - Art Institute of Jacksonville - Documentary Winner Backstory Heather Burky was thirty years old when she watched Oprah talk about controlling one’s destiny and following dreams. Heather cried (possibly due to the hormones from giving birth to her youngest daughter just two months prior) and, with her baby in her arms, enrolled herself in the nearest film school....
Meet David Winstone
David Winstone - University of Westminster, UK - Foreign Film Winner Backstory From Cambridge, UK, David Winstone has always been passionate about film. Growing up, he would use his father’s camera to shoot movies in his garden. The genre was typically kung-fu, his stars were his younger brothers (no older than 6), the visual effects were in-camera, and the audience was comprised of...
Meet Mark Raso
Mark Raso - Columbia University - Narrative Winner Backstory From Toronto, Mark Raso got into filmmaking at the age of 8 when his brother bought a video camera. They made shorts (edited in camera, of course) and fell in love with the whole filmmaking process. Partially due to sneaking into certain films coming out in his early teens (“Unforgiven,” “In the Name of the...
Meet Thomas Stuber
Thomas Stuber - Film Academy Baden-Wuerttemberg - Germany - Foreign Film Winner Backstory Thomas Stuber was raised in Leipzig, Germany. As a teenager he began watching everything he could get his hands on— his favorites being action movies and the French New Wave. He spent a year of high school in Mobile, Alabama and when he got back home, his mind was made up: filmmaking would be his...
Meet Amanda Tasse
Amanda Tasse - University of Southern California - Alternative Winner Backstory Amanda Tasse has always been very “multi-media.” Growing up, she did lots of arts and crafts and was able to play around with different cameras that her father shot on. In middle school, Amanda started carrying a camera around to document her daily life. Then in high school, shot her first narrative...
Meet Eric Prah
Eric Prah - Ringling College of Art and Design - Animation Winner Backstory From Plainfield, New Jersey, Eric Prah has been into animation his whole life. In childhood, he binged on cartoons and doodled in class. In his teens, being inspired by the XiaoXiao stick-figure-fighting Internet cartoons, he started messing around with Flash animation. Then he went to a summer animation program in...
A Closer Look At This Year's Student Academy Award...
Now that this year’s Student Academy Award winners have been announced, here’s a closer look at who took home the honors in the Animation category this year: “The Jockstrap Raiders” - Mark Nelson - University of California, Los Angeles Here is a making of the hilarious, gag-ridden “The Jockstrap Raiders.” Going from the initial sketches of the characters...
And The 2012 Student Academy Award Winners Are... →
This year’s winners were announced this morning. Check out the full list here and stay tuned for more details…
Foreign Finalists Selected For 2012 Student... →
Five finalists, selected from 51 entries representing 29 countries, will advance in the Foreign Film category in the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ 39th Annual Student Academy Awards competition. Up to three winners will be selected from this group and brought to Los Angeles to join U.S.-based Student Academy Award® winners for a week of industry activities and social events. The...