Featuring the work of students in three film and video production courses

The Visual Arts Program in the Lewis Center for the Arts at Princeton University will present an end of semester screening featuring the recent film and video work of 23 students in Yaara Sumeruk’s course “How to Make a Film” and Su Friedrich’s two courses, “Documentary Filmmaking” and “Intermediate Video and Film Production.” The screening will take place on Thursday, May 18, in the James M. Stewart ’32 Theater at 185 Nassau Street. Work by students in “How to Make a Film” and “Documentary Filmmaking” will be shown from 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. and work from “Intermediate Video and Film Production” will be shown from 7:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. The screening is free and open to the public.

beetle in a box

A still from the film “Beetle in a Box,” combining live footage and stop-motion animation, produced by sophomore Elaine Romano, one of several films that will be screened from among work done by Princeton students in three spring film and video production courses. Photo credit: Elaine Romano

The course led by Sumeruk, “How to Make a Film,” teaches students the basic tools and approaches for film production with digital media through hands-on studio work, screenings, critical readings, and group critiques.

Friedrich’s course “Documentary Filmmaking” introduces students to documentary film production using digital video, with an emphasis on the practical challenges of working in the real world.

In Friedrich’s other course, “Intermediate Video and Film Production,” students are free to explore their interests through documentary, narrative or experimental films, which culminate in either multiple short films or one long piece at the end of the semester.

Friedrich has produced and directed 23 digital videos and 16mm films, including I Cannot Tell You How I Feel (2017), Queen Takes Pawn (2013), The Odds of Recovery (2002), Hide and Seek (1996), Sink or Swim (1990), The Ties That Bind (1984), Gently Down the Stream (1981) and Gut Renovation (2013) which premiered at the Film Forum in New York and was screened at the Berlin International Film Festival. With the exception of Hide and Seek, Friedrich is the writer, director, cinematographer, sound recordist and editor of all her films. Her films have won numerous awards, including Best Narrative Film Award at the Athens International Film Festival, Outstanding Documentary Feature at Outfest in Los Angeles, Special Jury Award at the New York Gay & Lesbian Film Festival, Grand Prix at the Melbourne Film Festival, the Golden Gate Award at the San Francisco Film Festival and Best Experimental Narrative Award at the Atlanta Film Festival. Her work is in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art and many other institutions. Friedrich is the recipient of the Alpert Award in the Arts, an Independent Television Service production grant, a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, a Rockefeller Foundation Fellowship, a Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship, and a DAAD grant as artist-in-residence in Berlin, as well as multiple grants from the New York State Council on the Arts, the New York Foundation for the Arts, and the Jerome Foundation. Her films are distributed by Outcast Films. She currently teaches film and video production at Princeton.

Sumeruk has worked in multiple aspects of filmmaking, from directing to editing, production and marketing. She adapted the play Ringo into a short film, which premiered at The Locarno International Festival, Switzerland. She served as creative director and editor on seven films for the U.N. General Assembly and also edited several short documentaries for The Malala Fund. Her wide-ranging experience with filmmaking includes a two-year stint as director of video production for Bond Strategy and Influence, where she edited trailers for filmmakers such as Spike Lee. Sumeruk has also directed and edited music videos and commercials, and most recently edited an hour-long special on democracy hosted by Alicia Keys called We Are Here. She’s currently in post-production on a documentary she directed in South Africa. She has previously served as lecturer in film at the University of Cape Town, South Africa.

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