The Cinema Department of Bob Jones University will premiere the senior cinema majors’ short films on April 29 at 7 p.m. in Stratton Hall.

At the premiere, Luke Brubaker, Candace Burkett, Abby Cole, Will Craven, Destry Edwards, Brian French, Nathan Kidd and Larissa Loeffler will present their films.

These nine seniors started working on the scripts for their films during their junior year, began production fall semester of their senior year and then produced most of the films during spring semester.

“I’ve been working on my film for over a year now, and I’m finally satisfied with what it has become,” Loeffler, filmmaker of Alex, said.

During the fall, the seniors were able to recruit other cinema majors as crew. Most of the months of October and November were spent filming. Following that, hours upon hours were poured into the editing process to make their vision come alive.

Coming into the major, students are highly encouraged by cinema faculty to get involved and find opportunities to go out on film shoots and get as much experience as they can to prepare them for what’s ahead.

During the students’ senior year, cinema faculty member Christopher Zydowicz, widely known as Mr. Z, takes on the role of the adviser and guides the students as they make their eight- to 12-minute short film.

“Their senior year they’re put to the test to tell a story—a story that’s unique to them—that they want to reach out and tell other people,” Zydowicz said.

Zydowicz motivates the seniors while pushing them beyond their full potential.

As for the rest of the cinema majors, Zydowicz has repeatedly encouraged his students from the moment they join the major to always “get involved.”

“The students get involved at each level so that by the time they’re a senior they know how it all works together and what they need to tell their own story,” he explained.

Tomas Moreno, a junior in the major, emphasized Zydowicz’s encouragement.

“[Zydowicz] strives for you to do your very best to reach your full potential,” he said.

Nicole Winot, a junior cinema production major, also commented on Zydowicz’s teaching. 

“He knows how to adapt style to what we need,” Winot said.

Brubaker said that he wants to use his creativity to inspire people. In his film, Character Study, he was able to channel his creativity in such a way to create the comedy of the premiere’s line-up.

French views film as a way to “[invite] you to think differently, or to see something in a new way.” French continued to describe film as a unique way to present the Gospel, much like Christ used parables.

Most, if not all of the seniors, will be placing their films into festivals as they continue on after graduation. Because of this, their films will not be available for viewing for at least a year or more after the films are submitted.

Tickets for the premiere are $6 and are available for purchase through Programs and Productions or at the door the evening of the premiere.

As you begin to prepare for the week of finals, take a well-deserved break for just an hour or two and go to the annual senior film premiere.

The countless hours these seniors, with the help of their fellow classmates and cinema faculty, have put into making and perfecting these short films will be well worth your time.