Frances Roberson, assistant professor of theatre and technical director in the Arkansas Tech University Department of Communication and Journalism, believes the students in her theatrical film-making workshop course have everything it takes to produce quality films.
“The students in this class are learning how to make narrative films right here in Russellville, Ark., using equipment they have access to on a daily basis,” said Roberson. “The days of the studio system are behind us. Our students don’t have to live in New York or Los Angeles to see their cinematic visions come to life. Thanks to technology and social media platforms, they can write, film, edit and distribute their masterpieces without leaving the state. I have been blown away by the creativity, ingenuity, talent and hard work of this class of filmmakers. I really think the audience is going to enjoy this screening event. There is a variety of genres tackling all sorts of topics. There is truly a film for everyone.”
Roberson’s students will put their fall 2019 work on display during the inaugural ATU Theatre Student Film Festival Friday, Nov. 15, and Saturday, Nov. 16, in the Techionery Theatre, 1502 N. El Paso Ave. in Russellville.
“Students are learning the skills of tomorrow,” said Dr. David J. Eshelman, professor of communication and director of the theatre program at ATU. “This is a very forward-looking course. I cannot wait to see the films.”
Showings will begin at 8 p.m. both nights. Admission will be $4, with proceeds benefiting the theatre program account in the ATU Foundation. Refreshments will be available for purchase.
“Dr. Eshelman and Professor Roberson are the perfect team to lead ATU theatre into a film making/performance hybrid,” said Anthony Caton, head of the ATU Department of Communication and Journalism. “I am extremely excited about the future of the Tech theatre program.”
Summer Dantzler of Conway is one of the students in the class.
“So far I have learned a lot about what all goes into a film and how much creativity and patience one must have when filming,” said Dantzler. “This class has made me realize I had certain talents for film that I never knew I had until taking the class.”
Call (479) 964-0890 or visit www.atu.edu/cj/theatre.php to learn more about the ATU theatre program.