UA Seniors to Present Thesis Films at 'I Dream in Widescreen'

Lisa Pierce, UA School of Theatre, Film & Television
May 12, 2014

Remember that scary, automated, devil-baby-in-a-buggy prank and promotion in New York that was going viral on the Internet, eventually making it on to the "Today" show? University of Arizona School of Theatre, Film and Television alumnus Tyler Gillet co-directed that film, called "Devil's Due."

Gillet is but one among many UA grads who have captured the attention of audiences and entertainment industry leaders around the world, and the next generation of filmmakers trained at the UA is poised to do the same.

The public will have a chance to see the work of graduating UA student filmmakers – before they become famous – during "I Dream in Widescreen," a popular film screening held annually. Students will vie for awards and a prize from Entertainment Partners during the May 18 event, which be held at the Fox Tucson Theatre. Doors open 2 p.m. and the screening begins at 3 p.m. The event is free.

"Bloodlines" was written and directed by Christopher Nataanii Cegielski and produced by Dae Hyun Song.

During the screening, Bachelor of Fine Arts seniors in the School of Theatre, Film and Television will screen their thesis films

Among them is "Gaja," directed by Jackie Stubbs. In this travelogue, a multicultural filmmaker takes an unexpected journey with her Korean-born mother.

Ben Montemayor's "Surface Hercules," produced with Alexis Preston and Cooper James, provides a macabre glimpse into the mind of the artist Lance Alan.

This year's undergraduate thesis film competition will be juried by: Claudette Godfrey, the short-film programmer and operations manager for the South by Southwest Film Festival in Austin, Texas; Joe Garrity, senior filmmaker-in-residence in production design at the American Film Institute Conservatory, and the production designer of such films as "Waiting for Guffman" and "A Mighty Wind"; and Herb Stratford, programming director for the Napa Valley Film Festival.

"La Graduación" was written and directed by Rafael Gomez and produced by Stephanie Coon.

Last year's "I Dream in Widescreen" event was immensely successful and generated several invitations from renowned film festivals immediately following the event.

"Draw me Invisible" was written and directed by Dae Hyun Song.

Past senior thesis films that have premiered during the Tucson event have been chosen by highly competitive film festivals, including Sundance, the Palm Springs International ShortFest, the Aspen International ShortsFest Competition and the Los Angeles ShortsFest.

UA graduates have gone on to work across the film and television industry in writing, directing, development, production, talent management, cinematography and visual effects. Others have gained admission to prestigious professional programs, such as the American Film Institute Conservatory.

"Spatial Recognition" was directed by Andrew Katsinas and written by Katsinas and Michael Dean. Samantha Taylor was the producer.

Event sponsors include the UA BookStores, the UA Hanson Film Institute, Entertainment Partners and Xerox. A longtime sponsor, the Hanson institute will recognize the work of one student production designer with its Hanson Film Institute Award for Best Production Design. The institute also will recognize a cinematographer with its Hanson Film Institute Award for Best Cinematography.

Also this year, the Los Angeles-based post-production house Fancy Film is supporting the event with the Fancy New Filmmaker Award. The award – a festival and exhibition services grant – includes professional software and equipment and will allow the winning filmmaker to professionally present his or her film at the top international film festivals on the festival circuit.

"The Letdown" was directed by Ashley Foxx, written by Foxx and Nicholas Snell and produced by Samantha Taylor.

Other films to be screened include "The Letdown," which follows the story of Natalie and her crush, Tyler.

In "Bloodlines," was written and directed by UA student Christopher Nataanii Cegielski and produced by colleague Dae Hyun Song, two brothers attempt to earn the respect of their father by seeking out the wolf that has been killing livestock on their ranch.

"A Slip of the Lace" was written and directed by Cynthia Koiki and co-produced by Antora Majumdar and Megan Lopez. The film follows Ana Brown whose past transgression surfaces shortly after a significant moment in her life.

"I Dream In Widescreen" is supported by the UA School of Theatre, Film and Television’s Student Differential Tuition Funds, the Hanson Film Institute, the Student Faculty-Interaction Program, the Tucson Fox Theatre and Ricoh.

Contact: Beverly Seckinger, a UA School of Theatre, Film & Television professor, at 520-621-1239 or; Lisa Pierce, the school's marketing and development director, at 520-626-2686 or

"This is Home" was written and directed by Jenna Faville with producers Dillon Dowdell and Serena Sahajian.


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