Film Group investment bears prize fruit

It’s safe to say that anyone who spends time at CCF is struck by the ability of the CCF youngsters. CCF’s talent pool has breadth and depth. In 2010, an opportunity arose to test this talent, when CCF enrolled interested students in a 30 day basic film-making course. Run on Sundays, the course not only used up the students’ one ‘free’ day, but also introduced the novel and multifaceted challenges of film production. Storyboards and scriptwriting needed creativity, production values tested control and organization, and camera handling and lighting required the quick acquisition of technical skills.

To finance the program, a small band of sponsors covered the course fees and, upon the group’s successful completion of the course, provided key equipment. From that point on, CCF’s Film Group was up and running. In 2011, the group cascaded its skills throughout CCF, developing their own courses and teaching a total of 65 fellow students in 3 groups.

In 2012, as the inaugural CCF film courses were nearing completion, all of the groups were invited to contribute work to one of Cambodia’s first ever short-film contests, the Chaktomuk Short-Film Competition. The CCF teams produced 8 entries, each on the theme of Love, all while conforming to the 3 to 5 minute time requirement. It was notable that not one film could be described as saccharine or romantic. The films came from teams of youngsters who have experienced life’s calamitous side. Common themes included breakdowns of trust and affection between family or friendships, the perils of alcohol and drug abuse, and the abuse of pesticides.

The competition culminated in a daylong film workshop which brought together key figures from Cambodia’s film world and hundreds of students and enthusiasts to Phnom Penh’s landmark Canadia Tower. There, the CCF entries had their public viewing, earning positive comments and acclaim. This feedback was underscored when the winners were announced. Not only did Bike, a CFF film, take the prize for the Best Story, but Still Love, a film highlighting the damage of alcoholism, so caught the eye of a panelist from the Ministry of Information that it was awarded a special prize.

The delight of the CCF film students was clear. A mere 2 years ago the group had only rudimentary knowledge of film mechanics. Since then, they are on their way to mastering film’s arts and techniques, and they have sound experience not only in production, but in training too.

If you would like to see the CCF film entries click here

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