Twenty-four students and two professors from Quinnipiac University are attending the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah.
“For students who want to be filmmakers or television producers, it is an amazing experience because they are in the setting where some of the most cutting-edge work is being presented to the public,” said Rebecca Abbott, professor of communications.
“Much of it is being presented by people who aren’t much older than them and haven’t been working much longer than they have," she said. "They have an opportunity to see new work, but, even more importantly, have an opportunity to meet with producers, directors and actors and learn a lot about the industry and some of the most creative aspects of the industry.”
Abbott, a Hamden resident who serves as adviser to the Quinnipiac Film Society, said most of the students who made the trip are part of the School of Communication’s department of film, video and interactive media.
Abbott and Frederick Staudmyer, visiting assistant professor of communications, are accompanying the students at the film festival. The trip was planned and organized by the Quinnipiac Film Society. Senior Lorenzo DeCampos serves as Sundance coordinator.
“I know it's going to be a bittersweet experience since I'm a senior,” DeCampos said. “This is will be my third time attending the festival with QFS and it's an amazing experience every time. What I enjoy most about the festival is that you're surrounded by the people that most of us aspire to be someday and get a glimpse of what the future may hold for us. It's a very unique experience and I hope to be there with my own feature length documentary, currently in production, very soon.”
The Quinnipiac group purchased tickets to watch the movies of their choice prior to the event. The renowned film festival also includes panel discussions and workshops.
“They have filmmakers as well as people with different crew positions talking about aspects of filmmaking and the different dimensions of the film industry,” Abbott said.
Senior Shane Collins, president of the Quinnipiac Film Society, said he hopes the trip “broadens the minds of our members and gives them a venue to experience films that they would never experience otherwise.”
“We've been doing this trip for quite a few years now, and it's a great way to help enhance the student experience,” Collins added. “In school, we study films and their filmmakers, and at Sundance we get to interact with those filmmakers and immerse ourselves in the film culture.”