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Students' film shown at Oscar pre-show

Little did Jonathan Gordon '11 know when he was approached five months ago by a couple of seniors to act in their short film that he would end up on the Oscars.

Last night's Academy Awards pre-show included a segment on student filmmaking, which featured an interview with Paul Wallace '08 and Nicholas Clifford '08 and clips from "The Face," a 15-minute short film that they wrote, directed and produced as an independent study project in the Department of Modern Culture and Media.

"It was really awesome!" said Wallace immediately after seeing the pre-show feature.

Two weeks ago ABC found Wallace and Clifford after contacting the University for a television special on short student films. The network was put in contact with Wallace and Clifford through the Ivy Film Festival and the MCM department, Gordon said. Wallace then submitted the film and four short clips.

"They ended up showing more than just the four scenes I gave them, which is fantastic," Wallace said. "It was just crazy to have this piece of mine and Nick's life... shown on the Oscars."

The sci-fi film is set in a post-apocalyptic world as two brothers, played by Gordon and Clifford, make their way to a refugee camp in order to escape the "Locust" - a mysterious creature destroying the world and all its inhabitants.

Wallace and Clifford began working on the script last summer and filmed during November and December. They are set to wrap up production next Thursday.

The project was completely created by Brown students - everything from makeup and sets to the original score. The four-person cast is also made up entirely of Brown students, including Alexandra Panzer '08 and Elizabeth Rothman '11.

"I was ecstatic and really excited," Gordon said of seeing the clip on the awards pre-show. He added that he was also "nervous, because I hate seeing myself on film."

After working on the script over the summer, Wallace and Clifford found Gordon and Rothman by sitting in on TSDA 0030: "Introduction to Acting and Directing," and they proceeded to film in locations all over Rhode Island during November and December.

"The most important thing is how wonderful it was to do this at Brown and to have as many talented people make this into something so wonderful. Our hopes were to realize the vision, which was exceeded completely - the film grew much bigger than all of us could have dreamed," Wallace said.

When the film is finished, it will be shown at the Avon Cinema on March 13. After that, Wallace and Clifford will be entering "The Face" into film festivals and trying to circulate the film to as many people as possible, Wallace said. The two plan to move to Los Angeles when they graduate to promote the film and begin work on two other projects.

"I don't know the ramifications, but for me it's just about putting the film first," Wallace said. "Nick and I have faith in this thing that's bigger than all of us and having it on ABC during the Oscar pre-show is a dream come true."


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