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Film-Making Club: Joseph Yeh explains the club he’s starting at Eastern.

So you want to be a filmmaker.  Come and support Eastern University’s new Filmmaking Club.  The aim of the club will be to produce films.  At the end of each semester, we will present a show that will be open to the public and only members will be allowed to participate in the critique. 

The filmmaking club is based on my experience at The London Film School (LFS) in London, UK.   Mike Leigh was Chair of the school at the time and he also taught.  Whether you agree with Mike Leigh’s filmmaking process, he was also a byproduct of the film club.  Michael Mann also attended LFS.   During my stay, the school prided itself as one of the last film schools to still shoot on 35mm film.  However, at Eastern we will shoot with the cameras on our phones.  We will acquire new equipment as the club grows. 

We will work in groups of 3 to 5 people.   Everyone will work on each other’s film within the groups.  This way more films get made.  I will act as the term tutor and hold group meetings where we will work on the script, lighting, and various production issues.   

As members advance in the program new term tutors will be asked to mentor the newer terms.   

LFS started out as a film club and is now an accredited masters program for filmmaking and screenwriting.   There are six terms in the program. 

Each term becomes more challenging and demanding.  There are two components to the club: watching and making videos.  TERM 1 members are required to watch videos designated for TERM 1, but may also watch videos with higher TERMS.  

We will start “year one” of the program with an exploration of the French New Wave.  

And in TERM 1, we will make 3 to 4 min. B&W, silent videos.  

TERM 2, we will produce 3 to 5 min. videos with color and sound.  TERM 2 is reserved for the study of directors, and I have selected the films of Ingmar Bergman, which will begin fall 2022.  This means that TERM 2 people can watch, for example, Italian Neorealism videos with TERM 1, and TERM 1 can watch Bergman videos with TERM 2.  

TERM 3, we produce 15 min. documentaries.  TERM 4 and 5, we produce 15 min. fictions.  TERM 6 is the “Graduation” film.  It can be shot on any medium.  Students are encouraged to work independently, but may pull their resources together to work on a film.   However, they must play a major role. 

LFS has a coffee shop on the first floor of the building where everyone met to hangout and discuss ideas.  It was also where people asked each other to help on their films.  

I know the perfect meeting spot for us at Eastern.  Elections will soon take place.  

We will need to form a governing body to run the club and a charter will need to be written.  Please reach out to Stefan Martyniak(smartyni@eastern.edu), Coordinator of Student Engagement, for my contact information.

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