When it comes to after-school activities, things like football, marching band or academic teams come to mind. Now, one Charlottesville non-profit is giving students another unique option: filmmaking.
Light House Studio was founded in 1999 with a simple mission: help young people make and showcase high-quality movies.
“It’s evolved into this really welcoming community center for students that are interested in storytelling, in directing, in camera, in editing.”
Amanda Patterson is the studio’s educational director.
“We really offer a wide range of workshops and lessons for students that want to collaborate and learn a new skill.”
The studio helps students from across Virginia and the entire East Coast produce nearly 300 films per year.
One such film, Loop, has been featured in numerous film festivals across the county and just won an award in an international film and TV competition.
Stephen Gentry was part of the group that worked on the film. He says Light House really helped him learn more about the filmmaking process:
“They assign you a mentor, each group of kids a mentor that has been making films professionally, so that’s really awesome to have that advice. They are really supportive and give you a lot of help if you need it.”
The studio is planning its first sponsored film competition next month, offering a $1,000 grand prize to the top student filmmakers.