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And the Oscar goes to …

Film editing across curriculums

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The advent of digital convergence has placed new creative and academic demands on the modern Mizzou student. Nowadays, careers require multimedia know-how — whether working with press releases, plea bargains or petri dishes.

Several departments at MU have recognized this trend and incorporated film projects into the curriculum. The most comprehensive example comes from an interdisciplinary class through the College of Engineering, which began work on its fourth feature film during the spring 2011 semester.

“A good number of students want to study critical analysis of film but are also interested in learning the hands-on aspect of how to edit and shoot video,” says Roger Cook, director of film studies.

The roller-derby-vampire-themed movie will follow in the footsteps of Aztec Revenge, the fantastical Mexican wrestling flick filmed by a similar class in 2009. The scripts are unrelated, but students will again work on every phase of production, including story boarding, shot testing, script breakdown and shot sequence.

Also on campus during the 2010-11 academic year:

  • Student Life hired four freshmen to document their first year and to provide logistical help for companies that want to film on campus.
  • The Fresh Films competition for MU freshmen encourages novice videographers to create original material and explore filmmaking techniques.
  • The Silverscreen Film Festival enjoyed its fourth year at MU on April 15, 2011. What began as a collaboration between Mizzou and Stephens College now includes student films from across the U.S.
  • A graduate-level epidemiology class created 60-second YouTube videos about healthy behavior; some students even dressed up like cavemen.

“Being able to film and edit video is becoming as necessary as managing a spreadsheet or creating a website,” says Kathy Murray, assistant director of campus activities for student life.

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