2014 Future Filmmakers Festival Winners Announced

2014 Future Filmmakers Festival Winners Announced

The 2014 Future Filmmakers Festival recently cast a spotlight on aspiring Westchester filmmakers as four films received top awards at the culmination of the Festival. Open to students from all accredited Westchester high schools, this year's event featured twenty-three participants displaying their cinematic creativity at Pelham's historical Picture House.

The Festival showcased films from a variety of genres paving the way for students from diverse backgrounds the opportunity to set foot into the world of filmmaking, production, and cinematography. As in past years, the Festival witnessed an outpouring of support and collaboration for its talented young participants. After careful deliberation by a panel of judges, three films were awarded 'Chesters' - Westchester's version of the Oscar - for their excellence with a fourth receiving a Chester for technical excellence.

Taking home the coveted first place award was Dobbs Ferry High School student Thomas Newman and his film "Change", which chronicles the exploits of a homeless man while delivering a potent message about society's startling inequalities. Second place was given to Zach Nagin, a Mamaroneck student whose documentary "Dos Caminos" explored the inner workings of the dual-language program at his high school. Briarcliff High School student Samantha Simpson took home third place for her film "The Taker: Behind the Scenes", a firsthand look into the challenges of shooting a documentary.

In addition to these three outstanding students, Mark Catolano, from Eastchester High School was honored for the technical excellence displayed in his film, "The Suitcase". This film exciting graphics accentuated the storyline of the journey of a mysterious suitcase.

The talent displayed by the four prizewinners only served to punctuate the overall effort put forth by each of 2014's twenty-three entrants, as the Festival continued to build upon its reputation as the premiere showcase for Westchester's amateur filmmakers and producers.

The festival is great because it gives student filmmakers the chance to be recognized for their hard work," said Newman. "All the films were fantastic...it was truly a rich experience and it was nice to win the Chester in the end."

The Future Filmmakers Festival has been a gateway for Westchester's most prodigious High School filmmakers and film students, providing them with the feedback and experience necessary to further their potential careers. The event is a collaboration of The Matthew S. Hisiger Film Foundation, The Picture House and is fully supported by The Executive Office of Westchester County.