The historic Lincoln Theatre is hoping to launch the career of the next Steven Spielberg, Greta Gerwig or Bong Joon-Ho with a new educational program, theAppalachian Filmmakers of Tomorrow.
This weeklong course gives participants hands-on experience creating films from a variety of genres, as well as the opportunity to be mentored by filmmaking professionals to develop their own projects in the weeks following the course. Executive Director of The Lincoln, and director of the program, Brian Tibbs said the idea for the course grew, in part, from his own love of film.
“I became interested in videography as a teenager, just as cell phone cameras became ubiquitous. You don’t need an expensive camera or equipment to make good videos; almost all of us have the tools to create film right in our pocket. I’m hoping this program will ignite their passion for the medium of filmmaking, as a means of self-expression and storytelling. But also, with video becoming the preferred mode of communication online, I think the demand for video services will continue to surge and could lead to future career opportunities for students of the program.”
The program also aims to highlight the theater’s history as a former movie palace, home of newsreels, Saturday cartoons, and what are today’s most iconic classic films. “From ‘Gone with the Wind’ to ‘Jaws,’ just about every mainstream classic film ever made was once presented at The Lincoln.” said Tibbs. “Patrons of the theater got to see the world on screen for the first time in their lives, an experience that is hard to fathom to us now. I think this is what gives The Lincoln and other movie palaces the most historic significance.”
In addition to lessons on the history of filmmaking, students will engage in self-led projects to demonstrate the art of film in various ways. From sound and lighting to special effects, participants will explore a number of techniques to gain a full understanding of the filmmaking process. With the assistance of mentors, participants will then have two weeks to create their own short films to be presented during the inaugural film festival on Aug. 22. Tibbs hopes to see a number of genres represented in the students’ work, “There’s no pressure on them to produce the next‘Citizen Kane.’The goal is to have fun, create entertaining videos and learn the basics of a valuable craft.”
Participants in the program should be entering ninth through 12thgrade in the fall. The course will be offered free, and space is limited to 10 participants. The Lincoln hopes to grow the program over time. To be eligible, entrants should visit the theater’s website or Facebook page to complete a short questionnaire before July 1.
The course will take place during the week of Aug. 3-7. The students will then have two weeks to complete their own short film, with assistance from their mentors. On Aug. 22, The Lincoln will host the first annual Appalachian Youth Film Festival to showcase their works for the public. For more information on this event and other educational programs offered at The Lincoln, visitwww.thelincoln.org.