Nor­phlet grad­u­ate dis­cusses short films and ca­reer

El Dorado News-Times - - Front Page - By Kait­lyn Rig­don Staff Writer

Since grad­u­at­ing from Nor­phlet High School in 2014, Brook­lyn Alexan­der has been do­ing what she loves: writ­ing, di­rect­ing and film­ing short films.

Alexan­der said she has al­ways had an in­ter­est in the per­form­ing as­pect of film. She is now in her se­nior year at Sa­van­nah Col­lege of Art and De­sign, where she dou­ble ma­jors in film and tele­vi­sion and per­form­ing arts.

She has won numer­ous awards since her fresh­men year of col­lege, in­clud­ing Best Pic­ture at the Louisiana Film Prize 2015, Pro­gram­mer’s Choice Award at the Cleve­land In­ter­na­tional Film Fes­ti­val 2016, Au­di­ence Award for Best Short Film at the Omaha Film Fes­ti­val 2016, and many oth­ers.

Most re­cently, Alexan­der was awarded Best of Fest for her film “Bingo Night” at the El Do­rado Film Fes­ti­val this year.

Alexan­der spoke about film and dis­cussed how to make short films at the El Do­rado Ki­wa­nis Club meet­ing Wed­nes­day.

“I had al­ways been into the arts through­out school, par­tic­u­larly the­ater,” she said. “I never made an ac­tual short film un­til my fresh­men year of col­lege. Since then, I’ve made sev­eral through­out school that have been shown at many dif­fer­ent film fes­ti­vals and have won many dif­fer­ent awards.”

Alexan­der said a short film’s length is typ­i­cally any­where from one minute to 40 min­utes.

The first short film Alexan­der made was called “Still Here” and takes place on the day of “Claire’s” mother’s funeral. Claire is try­ing her best to take care of her dis­traught fa­ther, who doesn’t ac­knowl­edge her ef­forts, “but when she stum­bles upon a video her fa­ther was watch­ing, she comes to re­al­ize he wouldn’t look at her be­cause she looks so much like her mother as a young girl.”

Alexan­der said she came up with the idea for this film af­ter watch­ing an old 8 mil­lime­ter home video.

When Alexan­der made “Still Here,” her mother, Jacki, was still in chemo from fourth stage metastatic melanoma, which she had been di­ag­nosed with dur­ing Alexan­der’s se­nior year of high school.

“It was sen­ti­men­tal for me,” Jacki added.

Alexan­der said she shot

“Bingo Night” over Christ­mas break in El Do­rado last year. The film is about an el­derly man with arthri­tis try­ing to get him­self and his un­tied shoes to bingo night to meet his girl­friend.

“This film has done very well in fes­ti­vals so far and as I con­tinue to grow as an artist, I hope to make more films, much like this one, that can do well in fes­ti­vals and even­tu­ally make suc­cess­ful fea­ture films for the big screen,” she said.

Alexan­der said she en­joys mak­ing fam­ily friendly films. “What I’m kind of brand­ing my­self as, would be fam­ily friendly en­ter­tain­ment,” she said. “I like to make films that peo­ple can just en­joy with every­body.”

Alexan­der said her big­gest goal is to start a pro­duc­tion com­pany for fea­ture films, which she is cur­rently work­ing on. She said she is work­ing on this with a friend from col­lege and they en­vi­sion the com­pany be­ing a travel pro­duc­tion com­pany.

“So we’re go­ing to be go­ing around to dif­fer­ent places and mak­ing these films,” she said. “I want to be able to own it, but also act in the films, di­rect the films, write them, things like that.”

Alexan­der said her fa­vorite part about mak­ing short films is see­ing the ac­tors give a per­for­mance that is “mag­i­cal.”

“I re­ally like see­ing the mo­ments when I’m telling an ac­tor what I want from that part, and they just give me a per­for­mance that is just magic on the screen,” she said. “It’s very grat­i­fy­ing.”

Jacki said she is very ex­cited for her daugh­ter.

“We’re hav­ing a good time and just hop­ing for the best,” Jacki said. “She’s giv­ing 100 per­cent and she’s do­ing a re­ally good job.”

Alexan­der plans to en­ter more fes­ti­vals in the fu­ture and is get­ting ready to film her se­nior the­sis project, which will be filmed in Sa­van­nah, Ge­or­gia next year. She said she is hop­ing to en­ter that film into numer­ous fes­ti­vals.

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