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Top Festival Picks for Students – St Albans Film Festival 2014

The St Albans Film Festival which takes place 1st – 4th May 2014 is an excellent place to learn more about the film industry and to pick up skills and tips from those already in the business and so as a student hoping to get into the film industry it’s most definitely a great way to spend your bank holiday. 

Since the programme for the Film Festival is jam-packed we thought we would give you a helping hand and break down the weekend into the top picks for students  Our full schedule can be found here if your more of a pick and mix type, otherwise read on for our tips for an amazing weekend. 

On Friday 2nd May we have two all day workshops, both running from 9:30am to 5pm the first is ‘Pitching and Developing Ideas’ and the second is ‘The Art of Writing Screenplays’. Both workshops are going to be amazing in terms of tapping in to insider knowledge and by making a choice between the two you can’t really go wrong.

We also have ‘Blood, Sweat and Fears – How To Make Horror’ taking place between 8:30 and 10pm, which will give you a unique insight on the practicalities of shooting your first film, whether it be horror or any genre – Mike Tack will take you through how to start from scratch to getting your work seen by the right people. 


On Saturday at 10am and again at 1:30pm we’ll be running a ‘Stop Frame Animation Workshop’ where you’ll be shooting your very own stop animation film using the latest software and techniques. If your interested in animation we’re also running a ‘Studio Ghibli & Anime’ event during which you’ll be privy to rarely seen shorts and a Q&A with Studio Ghibli experts.

The ‘How To Direct Actors’ workshop between 10am and 12pm is a must for any aspiring directors out there who need to gain some practical experience directing professional actors. And for the more adventurous film makers out there we have a ‘Filming Extreme Sports Workshop’ running between 11am and 1pm, which will help you learn the best equipment and techniques for filming in these high intensity situations. 


There is also a ‘Writing For Screen’ event which encompasses four talks and workshops from 11am to 4:30pm with different industry insiders who can help you with all aspects of screen writing.

On Sunday we have our Student Film Shorts competition from 2-5pm where you can come along and see what other students are producing, maybe pick up some tips and get to know the people behind the shorts. In the spirit of networking you should also check out the ‘Awards Ceremony and Closing Party’ from 7:30pm, it’s an excellent opportunity to network with people in the industry and hopefully make some useful connections and most importantly have some fun! Jezus… we even have the incredible Cassetteboy rocking the after party at Club Havana till 2am… and tickets are only £10 for that. With 5 million youtube hits Cassetteboy Vs DJ Rubbish Comedy Disco is a brilliant way to spend a bank holiday Sunday and to have a laugh with your new found filmmaking friends.


Photographer: Steve Ullathorne 

But to be honest even if your not a film lover, you honestly can’t go wrong by stopping by for one of our feature films or perhaps one of the talks if you find one that piques your interest!

And as always I’m more than happy to chat with anyone of you about what you’ll be going to or to answer any questions about any of the events!

I hope your all as excited for the programme as I am! See you there… 

Lauren 🙂 Official Festival Blogger 2014