Stephens College digital filmmaking students took first and second place in the annual Gimme Truth! competition that is part of True/False, the international documentary film festival held in Columbia every spring. For the game show-style competition, filmmakers must create a film that is entirely true or entirely false.

Stephens Assistant Professor Chase Thompson, who teaches Filmmaking I, required students to make a film that would qualify for the competition.

Alex Davis ’21 (pictured above) took first place for her film “Cherry Pop.”

“We were brainstorming ideas one day, and I thought ‘What if I made a false documentary about a kindergarten teacher who also just so happened to be a stripper?’,” she said. “I kept asking myself, ‘How on earth am I going to trick these judges into thinking this is a true story?’ so I decided it would seem more credible if I worked myself and my own parents into the narrative. And it definitely worked out in the end.

“What I like best about the Stephens College digital filmmaking program is how supportive we are for one another. The department is relatively small, so students can easily get to know each other and form close bonds. Faculty members Chase Thompson, Steph Borklund and Kerri Yost are wonderful and supportive professors; they push us all to do our best both inside and outside the classroom. Honestly, I am so thankful to be here at Stephens College and to be a part of this amazing community.”

Christina Scott ’21, also a student in Filmmaking I, took second place at the competition.

“I am always so impressed with the ideas our students imagine and execute,” Thompson said. “The class did some amazing work and it is great that two of those projects not only made it into this selective competition — which attracts filmmakers from all over — but took first and second place!

“Columbia is a great town that embraces art in all of its forms, including film, and that leads to so many opportunities for our creative students.”

The entire Gimme Truth competition can be seen here. “Cherry Pop” is at 1:08:32. The judges highlighted the film’s “quality audio and brilliant storytelling” in their critique. Christina Scott’s second place film is at 54:00.

Tags : Student Success, School of Creative & Performing Arts, Digital Filmmaking

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