By Melissa Solano
FrancisFilms is an on-campus club at Franciscan University of Steubenville that not only learns about filmmaking, but also has become more and more successful at actually making films.
“FrancisFilms is a student run organization at Franciscan University dedicated to honing our artistic craft in all fields of video production,” said Kelly Butler, the FrancisFilms club president. “We strive to foster out-of-class self-motivation and learning.”
Although the club is not well-known by many Franciscan students, they certainly have no shortness of talent or credibility. Last year, the group entered a competition and won, earning the club a grand prize of $5,000. Butler said they do not plan on making this year any less successful.
“Our goal is to begin a new project on a bi-weekly basis,” said Butler. “These competitions only ask for 30- and 60-second spots so we are very optimistic about our goals. As a long term goal we hope to produce a short film that we could enter into film competitions and festivals as opposed to commercial contests,”
Butler is the club’s returning president, and her passion for filmmaking is palpable.
“Filmmaking is so exciting, because it is so spontaneous and entirely fueled by creativity and imagination,” said Butler.
In terms of bringing a Christian perspective to the media, Butler recognizes that Hollywood is not an entirely Christian-friendly environment.
“Being a Christian in Hollywood is one of the most difficult careers to adhere to,” said Butler. “The reality is, yes, Hollywood is a very dark place, but if you can be even the tiniest glimmer of light in a place that is so dark, you can begin to change it from within.”
She hopes that the club will help to inspire students to make Christians more prominent in the media, and to have fun and “to explore unlimited creative possibilities and opportunities and then see that vision come to life.”
She said one of the main goals for the club is for students to have fun, and to watch them grow in their artistry and ability.
“Because we advertise ourselves as a filmmaking community, we hope to foster a fun-loving environment, not just simply make films,” said Butler. “For students that want to pursue a career in digital media, they must constantly develop their portfolio to brighten their future. We want to uplift everyone involved and encourage them to work on their own projects. And with film, the only way to get better is to DO.”
The club is taking off for this upcoming school year. If students are interested in joining, contact Kelly Butler. She encourages students to check out the club’s Facebook link at http://www.facebook.com/francisfilms12 or shoot them an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.