Graduating film student has her first movie selected for OKC film festival
First time a charm for film student
Filmmaking isn't easy. But when you have a talent for artistic flair, like Angela Hodgkinson does, first times can be a charm. Her film, "Hipsteria," has made its way into the deadCENTER Film Festival. Not bad for a first try.
It shouldn't come as much of a shock that a girl who learned photography from her father and was big into art, even in elementary school, would make a good filmmaker.
Surprisingly, Hodgkinson said she isn't even that interested in making films. A photographer at heart, she only did the film to complete her Filmmaking II class, taken as an elective. To Hodgkinson's surprise, she got a call out of the blue from the people at the deadCENTER Film Festival. They wanted her film.
For a lot of people, making a movie can seem like a real hassle. Tedious hours in the studio and on-scene, coordinating actors and cameras, can frustrate the most seasoned of filmmakers, especially a first-timer. Oddly, Hodgkinson made the process seem more like a fun experiment than hard labor.
Even scriptwriting, which can take months for some people, took Hodgkinson mere moments.
"I just picked up on situations I had been in with friends, worked it all out in my mind and regurgitated a script," Hodgkinson said. "It actually happened really quick."
Then came the task of actually shooting the beast. Film classes prepared her to some extent, but there's nothing like getting out and doing something on your own.
"At the time, it was a highly stressful situation, but it was a good kind of stress," Hodgkinson said. "You're on fire most of the time."
Even the cast noticed how cool Hodgkinson was under fire.
"She never got frustrated. She was very professional," said David Miller, "Hipsteria" actor.
You can tell Hodgkinson had fun shooting the film. She can't help but smile while she talks about it.
Don't get the wrong idea though. Hodgkinson might be gifted, but it was her first time and lessons were learned. Mainly lessons in teamwork.
"I am a very solo person when it comes to art," Hodgkinson said. "I like being in control. I learned you have to have people to help in filmmaking. I learned a lot about working with other people."
From seeing her on the job, cast member Miller said Hodgkinson is more of a team player than she makes herself out to be.
"She was always joking around and making people feel happy," Miller said. "I think she spent more effort on that than on shots."
Hodgkinson went for a very minimalist approach to her film, which reflects her first love, photography. Hodgkinson describes "Hipsteria" as being fragments of a guy's life, like snapshots of a day in the life of someone.
"The best art can be made in the simplest ways," Hodgkinson said. "The most direct way is the best."
Photographs play their own role in the film. The main character takes pictures throughout the film, and they are flashed before the audience's eyes. Even the editing is choppy and jagged, like flipping through a picture book.
She describes her photography as a tiny piece, a word in a paragraph. This philosophy has bled into her film, making it visually stimulating.
The director of the deadCENTER Film Festival felt the same way, handpicking the film out of an open screening.
Now that her first film has been selected for a film festival, you would think Hodgkinson would start looking to bigger films and even out west to Hollywood. Just the opposite, actually. She would rather shoot stills instead of film.
If she did have a Spielbergian budget, Hodgkinson said she'd just make a lot of short films instead of one big one, like individual photos in a roll of film.
"I never thought I would be a big filmmaker, but if it happens I won't fight it," Hodgkinson said.
After graduation in July, Hodgkinson plans to move to New York to pursue a photography career. But you never know. You might see her name on the silver screen one day.
"Angela seems to be able to do whatever she puts her mind to," said Marilyn Hodgkinson, Angela's mother.
"Hipsteria" can be seen Friday at the deadCENTER Film Festival in the Individual Artists of Oklahoma Gallery on 811 North Broadway in Oklahoma City at 7 p.m. as part of the Oklahoma section. It is also showing Saturday at Java Dave's on Northwest 10th Street at 2 p.m.
The film will be shown on cable channel 20 Wednesday at 9 p.m.
For more information on the deadCENTER Film Festival visit their Web site at www.deadcenterfilm.org.
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