From Film Majors, Minors and Prospective Film Studies Students:
Please join us this Thursday, April 27th at 5:30pm in Judd Hall Room 116 to discuss diversity within the Film Department. This will be a public meeting open to the entire student body and faculty. In this meeting we hope to reiterate our suggestions for diversity and announce our plans for moving forward. We then hope to open the meeting up to discussion from attendees. Our main goal of this meeting is to gain a clearer understanding of the department’s initiatives to achieve diversity and for us to be able to publicly and candidly clarify our own hopes for the future of diversity within the film department. We hope for this discussion to be a meeting with multiple points of view, so please encourage your friends and faculty members to participate. This open discussion will lead to mutual understanding and change for the better.
“There has long been an inequality of opportunity within the film industry, and we know diversifying the film industry begins within our education at Wesleyan.”
On March 28, students from the University’s College of Film and the Moving Image released a letter, along with a list of signatures and testimonies, expressing dissatisfaction with aspects of Wesleyan’s Film Studies department. The letter called for systematic changes to the ways in which the department operates, including hiring three tenure-track professors (prioritizing women and POC), offering more diverse courses within the department, and reforming disciplinary procedures so that they are less reliant on “blanket threats” to drop students from the major or drop their theses.
The letter, which has been in the works since February, was a collaboration between a group of current film students – both majors and minors – as well as prospective film students. Before it was put into wide circulation on March 28, the letter was shared amongst students and alumni of the Film Studies department, along with a call for signatures and personal testimonies to present to the CFILM faculty. (From email circulation and tabling in Usdan, the letter received 175 signatures and eight accompanying testimonies.)
Read the full letter and testimonies after the jump:
The first Awareness Series @CFILM Wesleyan runs from Tuesday, February 23 – Tuesday, April 12th and features films about social and environmental issues. Each film is accompanied by a discussion with the director or filmmaker. Admission is free and films start at 8!
Date: every Tuesday (including today!) until April 12 Time: 8 PM Place: Center for Film Studies, Goldsmith Family Cinema
Last here in 2011, award-winning filmmaker and writer Etgar Keret is back— this time to speak about his 2008 film, Jellyfish. Emily Brown ’12, coordinator for special events and intern for the Center for Film Studies, gives us the details:
This film, directed by the husband-and-wife team of Etgar Keret and
Shira Geffen, tells the story of three women in Israel whose lives
intersect in increasingly profound ways. The film, which won the
Camera d’Or at the 2008 Cannes Film Festival, will be followed by a
Q&A with Keret.
This event is co-sponsored by the Jewish and Israeli Studies
department and the Film Studies department.
Date: Tuesday, April 23rd Time: 8:00-10:00 PM Place: Center for Film Studies Cost: Free
It’s the VOSS VISITING SCHOLAR LECTURE *bom bom bom bom*:
Join Tom Rogers ’76, P’14 and Henry Schleiff P’14 for a panel discussion on the business of television. Smart boxes, streaming, and social TV have changed how we watch, while traditional television advertising and cable subscription models are in flux. How will producers fund content in the future, and how will consumers watch it? These top executives will discuss the changing landscape of television. Moderated by Andrea McCarty, Charles W. Fries curator of the Wesleyan Cinema Archives.
Date: Today, April 15th Time: 8pm Place: Center for Film Studies Cost: Free
Ben Smith ’13 is making an animated thesis film, which will feature “lots and lots of teeth.”He’s looking for voice actors—not necessarily “cartoony” voices or impressions, just “good voice acting”:
Let’s get animated! Become a voice and persona behind a character in Benjamin Smith ’13’s traditionally-animated senior thesis film, Pearly Whites. This dark comedy is not your Saturday Morning’s cartoon. Set in a sleepy town in Oregon, Pearly Whites details the events that occur in the life of a dentist whose newest patient has become addicted to Nitrous oxide (laughing gas). The film deals with themes of depression, parenting, and teeth. Lots and lots of teeth.
Voice Actor Requirements: The script has five male parts and one female part. However, two of the male roles are aged 8-10 years old, so they should be of particular interest to child and female voice actors. The other three male voices are 40 or “younger father’s age.” The single female voice is also 40. Those interested should note that this film does not require “cartoony” voices or impressions, just good voice acting.
Leslie Wentworth ’12 appeals to your musically inclined inclinations:
Is John Williams your idol? He should be (just watch Jurassic Park), and you can be too. I’m looking for someone to compose music for my senior thesis film, probably in the more atmospheric, electronic realm than a full orchestra but I’m open to all ideas. We’ll collaborate during the semester to fit your beats to my film. Email me at lwentworth(at)wesleyan(dot)edu if you’re interested and be sure to include a short sample or link to something you’ve done.
I’m personally partial towards Hans Zimmer or Ennio Morricone (see above – man, that shit gives me a boner every time), but then again, John Williams did do friggin’ Harry Potter.
Happy Saturday, Wes! While Colby harasses our boys in Red on Andrus Field over something that looks like a brown oval-shaped melon, I’m writing this from the sweet serenity of opening hour Pi Cafe.
So, setting aside the whole eyebrow-raising Black Swan v. Film Major Alum issue that came up a few weeks ago (click here for dramatic reenactment), there are indeed some nice tales for those who pass through the halls of Mdm. Basinger’s Center for Film Studies to hear.
Mike White ’92, writer of such films as Chuck and Buck, School of Rock, and Nacho Libre, recently had himself profiled over at NYT Mag. The piece, presumably prompted by his upcoming 10-ep HBO series “Enlightened” that’s set to premiere this monday, gives us a very brief tour through Mr. White’s life and mind; it explores, at some length, certain fascinating facets of Mr. White, like his surprisingly deep bond with reality TV (fun fact 1: he was a contestant on The Amazing Race in one of the show’s more entertaining seasons) and his tough collaborations with FOX.
(Fun fact 2: The director of School of Rock, Richard Linklater, is the same Mr. Linklater who directed the ethereal philosophy textbook Waking Life as well as two of my favorite films of all time: Before Sunriseand Before Sunset. I am a sap I am.)
So, if you’re a film major in need of some role modeling, or just somebody interested in Mr. White’s exploits in general, or even somebody just lookin’ to kill some time on this beautiful Saturday afternoon, you can go on and click here for the profile.
[Thank to Big Mama Rachel Levenson ’12 for the tip!]