Preview of the 11th Annual Film Festival

Preview of the 11th Annual Film Festival

Andrea Lee

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The red carpet event gives the film members a chance to be treated like celebrities.


The month of March, though known as the dreariest month of the year, marks the halfway point for the film festival movies. The majority of the crews began filming in January, and the Film Festival itself is in May; at this stage, crews are fully immersed in production and the commotion of filming and editing.  This is a breakdown of the crews, the movies, and their progress along the way.




Crew: Plum

Members: Directors juniors Mike McKeon and Rory Hardiman; Assistant Director junior Erin LeBlanc; Art Director senior Cassidy Andrews; Actors senior Elias MBogga and McKeon.

Movie: “The Hall Monitor,” a movie about the ultimate hall monitor who is paired up with a young upstart in order to catch the infamous anti-monitor.

Breakdown: This movie lacks something that all of the others have: sound. Although the script was originally taken to be a regular movie, Hardiman made a short silent film with a few minutes of “The Hall Monitor” footage before production began. Even though he did it for fun, the idea stuck and the crew came to the decision to make the silent movie. MBogga, after playing a small role in “Marvin the Mentor” last year, now plays the head Monitor and gives the role the intimidating aura that it needs. With more than half of their movie already shot, directors Hardiman and McKeon have more work to do in the editing room than anything else, what with the music and the on-screen dialogue. Even though their decision to go silent was a huge risk, the crew has the experience in the editing room and the potential to be a hit.



Crew: Mulberry

Members: Director junior Hannah Mullen; Assistant Directors seniors Ali Ajemian and Mike Habib; Art Director senior Keiko Ivinson; Actors senior Jungbin Lim, junior Kyle Raftery and senior Alex Marcinkowski.

Movie: “The Ringer,” a movie about a student who decides to hire his brother’s tutor to take his SATs for him in order to follow his girlfriend to college.

Breakdown: When this script was originally written last year, the buzz surrounding the potential movie was phenomenal. After a lot of changes to both the script and the students who were going to work on the film, Mullen has taken over as the sole director and has a great group in her actors and her fellow art and assistant directors. This is one of the quieter movies; even though many other film kids are unaware of Mulberry’s progress, the crew has made great strides and is far along in filming. Despite having to deal with the setbacks of not only being the sole director on the crew but having two actors who are not in the film class, Mullen still has more than half her movie shot and is working on editing along with her assistant directors, Ajemian and Habib. Ivinson has been another helpful addition to this crew, as her artistic abilities pushed pre-production along easily and have continued to be important. This crew is definitely a powerful one to contend with, and with seasoned Film Festival actor Raftery joining with newbies Marcinkowski and Lim, their acting looks to be entertaining.



Crew: Cloudberry

Members: Directors sophomores Bryan Kelleher, Marc Sheehan, and Brian Tracey; Assistant Director junior Montana Gulbrand; Editors sophomores Chris Gallivan, Lawrence McCarthy, and Sheehan; Art Directors sophomore Kody McCann; Actors junior Jack Stedman, sophomore Jessie Jones, Sheehan, junior Maria Earabino, and freshman Bridget Connell.

Movie: “Human Behavior,” a movie about a class that decides to run itself when their teacher doesn’t show up.

Breakdown: This crew has one of the biggest setbacks of all: being the only independent film crew. Being an independent means that no one in this crew is actually in film class; instead, they have to do all of their work outside of school. These directors have taken that challenge and risen to it, even working harder than a lot of the other crews. Over February vacation, they were in at 6 am on a daily basis, proving their dedication to getting their movie done on time. Although they do not have a high number of scenes, the ones they do have are very extensive and require a lot of time put in. Despite being sophomores, Kelleher, Sheehan, and Tracey have exceeded expectations on this movie in both writing the script and the work they put in, along with junior Gulbrand who has impressed with shot composition. Independent films are not known to be highly recognized during awards night, but who knows; this crew could be the one to do it.



Crew: Pineapple

Members: Directors seniors Steve Bean and Ryan Erwin; Assistant Directors senior Molly Breen and junior Genevieve Canavan; Actors Erwin, senior Mike Rando, and Mr. Dave St. Martin.

Movie: “Extra Credit,” a movie about a desperate student that agrees to complete a series of ridiculous tasks for Mr. St. Martin in order to receive extra credit.

 Breakdown: This script, upon its initial drafts, was another that generated a lot of buzz. Mr. Alan was set on this film being made, and just by the script itself, it has a lot of potential. Even though the crew has not been on the radar much, that strategy could work for them. One of the biggest assets of this movie will be the talent in acting. Mr. St. Martin won Best Faculty in Hair Salon, and this role is another that could be highly popular. Likewise, Erwin started his acting career in Film Festival in last year’s Best Picture (along with many more awards) “A Serious Student,” and even earned a nomination for Best Supporting Actor. This year, newcomer Mike Rando, who is a supporting role, has shown impressive acting skills too. Nominations for these actors seem to be a very possible feat; the movie itself, on the other hand, is unclear, what with their quiet progress.



Crew: Marionberry

Members: Directors seniors Erin Batchelder and Chris Nash; Actors juniors Mike Griffin and Maddy Waple; Art Director Batchelder.

Movie: “The Treasurer,” a movie about a class treasurer who, disappointed that he does nothing in his position, proceeds to ruin his class’ winter dance.

Breakdown: Anyone who is remotely involved with the Film Festival knows that Batchelder, or “Batchy,” is one of the most outstanding directors in the festival and has certainly made a name for herself. After the success of “A Serious Student” last year, which she co-directed, Batchy had a lot of pressure going into this year. This year, she has taken “The Treasurer” and given to it the same dedication that she did to her movie last year. Even though she has two new actors in her film, Waple and Griffin, they both have adapted in their roles and showed immense acting skills. What Batchy is known for is going above in beyond with her footage in both shooting and editing; her recent shoot was during vacation in the cafeteria for the “Winter Formal.” The crew decorated the cafeteria and had extras arrive in semi formal wear, and they have another big scene, the “Senior Fair”, coming up soon too. There are high expectations for “The Treasurer” this year, but Batchy has her crew completely under control.



Crew: Avocado

Members: Directors seniors Jackie Gately, Matt Johnson, and junior Ashley Waldron; Assistant Directors senior Tyler Paslaski and junior Cat Murphy; Editor junior A.J. Quinlan; Art Directors senior Jen McDonald, Waldron, and Murphy; Actors Gately,  senior Caleb Cofsky, and Mr. Gabriel Bakale.

Movie: “Alby,” a movie about a hapless guardian angel who needs to help a student achieve his dream or be fired.

Breakdown: As crews are watching each other and sizing up competition, this movie is already regarded as a success. Gately not only wrote this movie, but is acting and directing in it. This was the position that Dan Meyers was in last year with “A Serious Student,” which turned out to be a huge success. Firstly, the script was creative and their art direction has been superb; the crew stayed for hours in Plimpton to paint the room white. They also go out of their way to avoid cutting corners; one of their scenes featured Cofsky throwing up in it. While they could have easily left this image to the audience’s imagination, they instead created fake vomit. Avocado also has the acting talent too; Gately starred in “My Own Worst Enemy,” and “The Weaver Report.” And even though Cofsky is a new actor, he has been stepping up to the role. The crew has had some drawbacks, like lost footage, but overall they continue to be a stand out crew.



Crew: Currant

Members: Directors seniors Phil Reidy, Jess McNamara, and junior Chris Barajas; Art Directors senior Steph Barmakian and junior Cat Murphy;  Editors Barajas and Reidy; Actor junior Mike Van der Linden; Boom-mic Operator junior Brendan Sullivan.

Movie: “The Door,” a movie about a student who is haunted by visions and decides to investigate a crime, which leads him on a search for a door that may or may not exist.

Breakdown: This is the second year that Jess and Phil have been working together on a movie, after last year’s “Wicked Man.” Currant is another crew that flies under the radar in Film, and much is unknown about their production. The toughest part of this movie is the difficulty of shooting, as the directors find it hard to not only find the time to meet together but also with their extremely activity-involved actor, Van der Linden. McNamara, “Jmac,” seems to be at the helm of this movie as she has recently taken to shooting more of the movie and keeping the crew together in general. Currant’s mysterious production in both the script and their progress will only add to the hype when it comes time for shows in May.



Crew: Cucumber

Members: Directors junior Casey White, senior Daria Grady, juniors Noah Kung, Nick Morey, and Maggie Moriarty; Assistant Directors juniors Frank Welter, Remy Love, and Leslie Hill; Editors Love, Welter, and senior Craig Wilson; Art Directors juniors Cj Weinacht, Lauren Messina, and Valerie Lancy; Actors Grady, junior Meg Driscoll, junior Frank DeBlasio, and senior Harvest Perez.

Movie: “Miss Superlative,” a movie about a senior who decides to break the record for most superlatives won.

Casey White and Daria Grady wrote this script secretly, without even knowing if Mr. Alan was going to give them the green light. After drafts of perfecting it, Mr. Alan decided to take the movie and use it as a project for his Film I class. With a high number of students on this production,  the progress has been blistering. Cucumber was the last movie to start, and they are already pulling ahead of other crews as far as the number of scenes shot. Since the entire class is working on the movie, there are always people there to shoot or edit, which has already helped in catching them up the rest of the productions. Those who know the buzz about this movie will be very interested to see how it turns out, especially with their cast of newbie actors.



Crew: Kiwi

Members: Directors  seniors Sydney King and Joanna Haswell; Assistant Directors juniors Nell Sandvos, Lena Ford, and seniors Bridget Nicholson,and Scott Marcum.

Movie: “The Rivalry,” a documentary following the lead up to a rejuvenated rivalry between Walpole and Norwood–the senior night boys hockey game.


This movie requires a lot of work outside school for the directors, but now that hockey season is over, they are left with all of the footage and can weave a story out of it. The difficult task of a documentary is taking whatever comes, because it is not a script and there is nothing to follow. The directors filmed interviews, games, reactions, and even locker room talks. The specific focus of this doc is the Boys Hockey team, and their rivalry against Norwood. Unfortunately, Walpole tied, and then lost to Norwood, during two of  their season games, and then lost again to them in tournament. The crew will have no problem with footage, because they were constantly equipped with a camera and have filmed everything hockey; the problem is the story. No one can say for sure what route this crew is going to take now, but hopefully they will follow the path of the sports documentary “The Recovery” in their ability to successfully portray the ups and downs of a team.



Crew: Wombat berry

Members: Directors  senior Rachel St. Germain and junior Jimmy Lombardi; Editor junior John Barry; Art Director **Stephanie Saba; Actors senior Ross Bubly, Barry, Mr. William O’Malley, and Mr. Chris Jean.

Movie: “The Wombat,” a movie about two kids who hire the masked superhero the Wombat to end their bullying problems.

Breakdown: This was another script that had a lot of interest from the beginning, as it was written by Anthony Earabino, Luke Witherell, and John Montaquila–and it was funny. Actors are a huge asset to this movie, with Ross Bubly (who is just known for being a funny person) and newcomer John Barry who is exceeding expectations. More than just students, the faculty members are probably the highlight of this production, with Mr. O’Malley and Mr. Jean in costumes. Their progress was questionable in the beginning, but now that they have warmed up, there are a lot of expectations for a funny movie come showings in May. Even though both head directors, St. Germain and Lombardi, were only assistant directors last year, they adapted surprisingly well to the bussle of being in charge of the camera and the editing. Overall, Wombat has a lot of hype going on, and if they continue the way that they are going now, they are going to impress.



Crew: Jackfruit

Members: Directors senior Michelle Monahan and junior Doug Stewart; Assistant and Art Director junior Elizabeth Ryan; Editor junior Lina Feeley; Actors seniors Eric Jansen, Evan Parsons, and Sam McChesney.

Movie: “Senior-Skip Day,” a movie about a reserved student who decides to participate in the tradition of senior-skip day.

Breakdown: Monahan herself wrote this movie last year, but was not involved in film; instead of giving it to someone else, Alan saved it for her so that she could make her own movie during her senior year. Her and Stewart are a very productive pair as directors, and both of them have the skills needed to not only have a successful shoot but a successful editing job too. Ryan has also proved herself to be an asset to the crew and, all together, they are one of the most productive and well cooperating crews that there is. They have a lot of their movie shot already, and if they continue at this pace, will be in great shape to have plenty of time for editing and last minute touches. Even though this film lacks some of the big scenes or sets that others have, they have appealing actors and overall, a very feelgood movie that is expected to do well.



Crew: Watermelon

Members: Director  senior Andrea Lee, Assistant Director senior Ricky Sgalia, Art Directors seniors Becky Chariton and Darci Bruce, Actors junior Brendan Chaisson, Bruce, Chariton, and senior Bobby Rose.

Movie: “Senior Assassins,” a movie about a senior who is completely obsessed with winning Senior Assassins but, upon a quick end to his game, trains his girlfriend to become the ultimate competitor.

Breakdown: This movie is known for the challenges that the crew has had to face over the past few months. Not only are there more scenes than any other movie, but a majority of them are outside. The snow has been the ultimate enemy of “Senior Assassins,” and no matter what happens, timing is going to be rough for this crew. Last year, both Lee and Bruce were on a crew known for its dysfuncitonality, something that Watermelon has succeeded in avoiding. The actors are huge in this movie; with 2 leads and 2 supporting roles, their performances are crucial. Newcomers Bruce and Chaisson have taken the leads, and have proven to have high acting ability, while newcomer Rose and returning actor Chariton have the supporting roles with a lot of potential for laughs. A lot of stress is riding on this crew, but if they continue to adapt to changing weather and the circumstances that come with it as well as they have been, “Senior Assassins” could be an entertaining movie.