Franklinton becoming a mini-Hollywood
Posted On 04 May 2017
By : Lauren Earley
By Brandon Anderson
FRANKLINTON --There are several unique features in Franklinton, especially in the area of arts. One of those fields is the rising interest of filmmaking.
The Franklin County Arts Council hosted the third annual film festival April 22 at the Franklinton Arts Center. They featured several different films from shorts lasting about four minutes to some 55-minute features, each with their own message regarding diversity, culture, experience and other themes.
About 33 people attended the festival, which was divided into three separate blocks; morning, afternoon and evening. Among those were three independent filmmakers, J.D. Mayo, Rodney T. Moore and Rebecca Bradley, representing a French-based filmmaking institute.
Mayo featured his 25-minute Civil War-based film Our War. Mayo was able to camp out on set and shoot some Civil War reenactments in North Carolina as part of his story. The story is about a Southern family’s son, who chose to fight in the Union Army. It deals not only with the nation’s conflict, but their own family’s.
Moore featured his 45-minute film Determined. Moore’s film tells the story of a man who joined the FBI after his sister was murdered, in an effort to find her killer and discover the truth regarding her death.
The Franklinton Film Festival began at 10:30 a.m. April 22 with a red carpet welcome at the Franklin County Arts Center on 22 S. Main Street in Franklinton. From left, Franklin Art Council Head Pamela Andrejev, filmmaker J.D. Mayo, Rebecca Bradley representing a French-based film, filmmaker Rodney Moore and Franklin County International Film Festival Director Gauri Singh.
Bradley attended on behalf of French filmmaker Pierre Gaffie’s Dolphin Skin City. The film is a love story of an urban architect as well as a call to action to be environmentally aware.
Other films presented that day included different stories and topics, such as the post apocalyptic adventure Moksha, and child-directed documentary, Dear New President.
After each film, there was a question and answer session from the audience to the filmmakers. Attendees learned more about what goes into filmmaking and what they should and should not do in the process.
At the end of the festival, the audience and film selection committee voted on the best films of the night. For the Audience Choice Award, Moore and his film Determined took it away for best concept and acting.
The film selection committee selected the following for these awards:
Best Actor: Slavko Sorman from Normal;
Best Actress: Kaman Amjadi from Autumn Leaves;
Best Post Production Film: Vick Krishna for Moksha;
Best Cinematography: J.D. Mayo’s Our War;
Best Concept: Cameron Bontrager’s (age 10) Dear New President;
Best Direction: Pierre Gaffié for Dolphin Skin City;
Best Film: Nicolas Fogliarini’s Best Before Ends; and
Best Screenplay: Javad Daraei for I Don’t Like Here.
Franklin County International Film Festival Director Gauri Singh said she has seen the interest grow in the past two years and the festival has attracted more and more people to show interest in Franklinton.
“It is opening more doors in Franklin County,” Singh said. “As there is more acceptance, I believe it will grow.”
The filmmakers who attended the festival were also impressed with the growing interest in the community and encouraged others to visit Franklinton for that reason.
“The Franklin County N.C. Film Festival is a must for any new filmmaker,” Moore said in an email after the festival. “The networking alone gave me that motivating feeling, and the other film makers were encouraging each other’s projects.”
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