The National Film Festival for Talented Youth (NFFTY) is a great opportunity for Seattle University students to watch films and submit their work. The festival ran from April 28th - May 8th, 2022. To learn more about NFFTY, visit the website here: NFFTY 2022. In 2022, numerous SU Film Studies alum and current students' films were selected to be a part of the festival.
From left to right: Seattle University Film Professor Alex Johnston, Hailey McGill ('21), Barb Hoffman ('19), and NFFTY Head programmer and SU Film alum, Amy Williams ('19) from this year's festival.
Ha'aheo's film Malihini (produced as part of an SU class) was chosen to screen as part of the festival's prestigious Closing Night program.
Barb's winning music video, Rainy Days and Crooked Sheets, led to her selection by festival funder Scan Design Foundation, to participate (with full financial support) in a week-long young filmmakers' intensive at TheNextFilmFestival, which will be held in Norway in August 2022.
Barb's film What We See in the Clouds received an Audience Award for the Connected by More category presented by the AFI Conservatory.
Hailey's film, Ode 2 Embarrassment, won an audience award at the festival.
Mary's film, the waiting room, (produced as part of an SU class) screened at the festival.
Seattle University Film Studies alum Barb Hoffman and Suzanne McAuley both recently worked on a film, a 60-minute psychological drama called Ocean's Arrival. Suzanne was the Director of Photography on the project and Barb was the Gaffer. They express their appreciation of the project as well as the opportunity to grow through the process and connect with incredible people. Ocean's Arrival has screened at SIFF Uptown on May 5th, 2022. Congratulations to these two alumni and their continued work and successes!
The Film Studies department is more than just lights, cameras...action! Led by Student Representative, Ha’aheo Auwae-Dekker, a kickball game was planned to connect film faculty and students. Each inning brought tough competition, with the winning team receiving a Kiwi prize from Dr. Thompson. More exciting activities to come!
Amazing work by the talented filmmaker, Ha’aheo Auwae-Dekker! Their 2021 short film, Malihini, was created for a SU Film Studies class. Malihini has been selected as a part of the Seattle Asian American Film Festival, the Hawai'i International Film Festival, the Local Sightings Festival, and most recently, the National Film Festival for Talented Youth. Read about their experiences in an article from NW Asian Weekly. Congratulations to Ha’aheo and their continued success!
Ha’aheo Auwae-Dekker’s Malihini, (2021, 6 minutes) was selected as a part of the 10th Annual Seattle Asian American Film Festival. Their film was available for online viewing from March 3rd - March 13th, 2022 with information on the website: SAAFF 2022. In addition to online screenings, Malihini was shown at an in-person drive-in theater event on March 12th at the Stone House Cafe.
Malihini, (2021, 6 minutes), created by Ha’aheo Auwae-Dekker, was accepted to the Local Sightings Film Festival. To learn more about the film festival, visit the website here: Local Sightings Film Festival.
Film Major, Ha’aheo Auwae-Dekker’s film, Malihini, (2021, 6 minutes) was accepted into the Hawai'i International Film Festival. The film looks into the director's relationship with Hawaiian identity and living on the mainland through a conversation with their mother. The film was available for viewing from November 4th - November 28th, 2021 at the Hawai'i International Film Festival.
Gabby, an Environmental Studies and Film Studies double-major, found the perfect connection between these fields through an internship with the Center for Environmental Justice and Sustainability (CEJS) here at Seattle University. Gabby’s year-long internship was client-based and allowed her to grow both personally and creatively. She explored her different interests while playing a major role in Seattle U's 2022 Earth Month. Gabby's film "OUR HOME?: What is Home? ft. Gabriella Robinson" screened at the 2022 Earth Talks. Learn more about Earth Talks and Gabby's internship experience here: https://www.seattleu.edu/cejs/events/earth-talks/#film.
Dr. Kirsten Moana Thompson received the McLaren-Lambart Award Runner-Up Award for Best Scholarly Book in Animation Studies from the Society for Animation Studies, and an Honorable Mention for Best Edited Collection from the British Association for Film, Television and Screen Studies (BAFTSS), for Animation and Advertising, eds Malcolm Cook and Kirsten Moana Thompson (Palgrave, 2020), Oct. 2021.
Dr. Thompson’s FILM 3220 Film Noir Class got some hands-on practice this Fall Quarter with a demonstration of lighting equipment by Instructor Craig Downing. They then tried their hands to reproduce some of the beautiful chiaroscuro lighting they have been watching in American classics like Out of the Past (Jacques Tourneur, 1947) and The Maltese Falcon (John Huston, 1941).
Celebrating their formation as an independent Film Program, the Film Faculty and staff went out together for a late summer sail, under the trusty captain Craig Downing and joined by John Trafton, Josefina Valenzuela Cerda, Program Director Kirsten Moana Thompson and Office Manager Shawn Bell. It was a beautiful day to celebrate!
Film graduates Nils Gollersrud and Anthony Bowmer attended the Cannes Film Festival 2021, where they checked out some of the new films, including Palme D’or Winner and horror film Titane (Julia Ducournau, 2021), described by the BBC as the “most shocking film of 2021” as well as new films by Apichatpong Weerasethakul (Memoria), Sean Baker (Red Rocket) and Hong Sang-Soo (In Front of your Face). They had a ball!
In January 2020 Dr. Thompson and Dr. Johnston went to Park City, Utah for the Sundance Film Festival as we laid the groundwork for a new student trip with the Windrider Film Festival partnership. Amidst all the amazing new films and movie stars at Sundance, we also caught up with one of our recent star graduates Sydney Thun. Sydney has previously worked as a production assistant for Disney films and for television. She is now working as a Script Consultant for HBO!
Photo, left to right: Dr. Thompson, Alum Sydney, and Dr. Johnston at Sundance 2020.
Dr. Schultz-Figueroa published two peer-reviewed essays, "Mediating Disease: Scientific Transcriptions of Covid-19 into Animal Models" and "Abandoned Aquariums: Online Animal Attractions during Quarantine." Dr. Schultz-Figueroa has just also completed work on scientific non-theatrical films for The Celluloid Specimen: Moving Image Research into Animal Life and his book will be published in February 2022 by University of California Press.
Dr. Johnston has a chapter in an upcoming book about the filmmaker William Greaves and his Muhammad Ali documentary, The Fight, and explores the parallels between the director's experiences as an African-American filmmaker, and Muhammad Ali's as a Civil Rights icon.
Both Dr. John Trafton and Dr. Schultz-Figueroa announced that they had secured publishing contracts for their groundbreaking research. Dr. Trafton's Movie-Made Los Angeles: The City of Angels and the Rise of American Film will be with Wayne State Press.
Dr. Thompson also published Animation and Advertising (co-edited with Malcolm Cook, Palgrave, 2019) the first anthology devoted to the fascinating world of sponsored animation. She was featured on the "Animation and Fantasy" Podcast, and also presented "Animated America: Animated Advertising from Times Square to Walt Disney" as part of Seattle University Lightning Research Talks. She chaired "Kanaka Maoli Childhood, Epistemologies, and Futurity" at the American Studies Conference in Honolulu, Hawaii, won a Summer Faculty fellowship for her work on animation and advertising, a Catholic course development grant, and the Inaugural Seattle University Shine Award: Championing Student Professional Formation Service Award.
Dr. Alex Johnston's film Evidence of the Evidence, which was previously selected for the prestigious Berlinale (Berlin International Film Festival), was also a finalist for two jury prizes in 2020: Best Documentary at the Mimesis Documentary Festival in Boulder, CO, and Best Experimental Film at the Dublin Independent Film Festival in Dublin, Ireland.
Josefina Valenzuela Cerda's narrative experience The Circle is available on Oculus Go and was an official selection at the Sci-Fi & Fantasy: Genre Lab, and at the Los Angeles Lift-Off Film Festival.
Dr. Thompson and Dr. Johnston participated in a screening and panel discussion of Medicating Normal, Lynn Cunningham's new documentary about the opioid crisis and Big Pharma.
The Film Department's new professional development series Movie Bites continued in 2019-20, in which students get to talk about career paths with practicing professionals from the film industry over a pizza lunch. This year we hosted Academy Award-winning Cinematographer Joan Churchill, Sound editor Alan Barker, and Animator Dustin Sweet.
Films by Seattle University students Barb Hoffman ('20) and Hailey McGill ('21), and by recent alum Mathew MacDonald ('19) screened at this year’s prestigious National Film Festival for Talented Youth (NFFTY), a Seattle-based international film festival for filmmakers under the age of 25.
Based on the quality of “Melons,” McGill was also invited to apply for and won, the T-Mobile Foundation's "T-Mobile Uplifting Voices Challenge." The challenge award includes a $2,500 cash prize for McGill's next film project and mentorship from T-Mobile Content Studio producers and creatives. It also guarantees that McGill's next film (or a work-in-progress) will screen at NFFTY in 2020.
Hoffman's film “Keys,” McGill's film “Melons” and MacDonald's film “Mormor,” were all produced in SU Film Studies courses. Selected from a pool of more than 1,200 submissions, they were screened among the 265 films by filmmakers from 24 states and 24 different countries.
Photo, left to right: Mathew MacDonald, Hailey McGill, Suzanne McAuley, and Barb Hoffman on the NFTTY red carpet.
Over the 2017-18 academic year and 2018, Michael Lee and Brett Thompson were each interns at the Center for Environmental Justice and Sustainability. They created a video to tell the story of the amazing work Seattle U’s Center does to change the world and combat climate change.
After four years of hard work, our largest graduating cohort got together to celebrate their new film degrees.
Six new Film prizes and Awards were given out.
Download the list of award winners
Some of the Winners of the Graduation Ceremony 2019
Amelia Zeve (Winner of Best Film Analysis Award) Dr. Thompson, and Dr. Trafton.
Dr. Thompson with winners of Best Social Justice Film, Connor Merrion, Nils Gollersrud, Dr. Johnston, Barb Hoffman, and Suzanne McAuley.
Nils Gollersrud, Winner of the Kiwi Award for Best Film Program Mascot
The Tasveer South Asian Film Festival presents a very special evening with the two-time Academy Award-winning Pakistani director Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy. The program will consist of a screening of her Oscar-winning documentary, A Girl In The River, followed by a conversation with Sharmeen about her work as a documentary filmmaker. She will be receiving the prestigious Tasveer Emerald Award 2018.
Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy is the only female director to have been awarded two Academy Awards by the age of 37. Since 2001, she has made over two dozen multi-award films in over 16 countries around the world. Her films include Student-Athlete, Girl in the river, Song of Lahore, Saving Face, Peace Keepers, and Transgenders: Pakistan’s Open Secret.
Directed by: Wendy Jo Carlton
Hoping to add a little spice to their two-year romance, Seattleites Jenna and Kate open up their relationship to an alluring and enigmatic stranger, only for it to expose the cracks in their foundation.
Workshop SIFF May 28: How to Build an Online Following For Your Feature, Short or Episodic
Lynch: A History (documentary)
Directed by: David ShieldsA mesmerizing video collage rather than a traditional doc, this portrait of heroically controversial ex-Seahawk Marshawn Lynch focuses on his narrative-controlling interview strategies in the context of race and media celebrity in America.