Tag Archives: Filmmaking

Samantha Weaver ’88 Speaks about Filmmaking

On Tuesday, Hamlin alumna Samantha Weaver ’88 spoke with grade 5 students about filmmaking.

Our students are in the process of developing films focused on ocean-related topics ranging from gray whales to the importance of plankton. A long-term goal is for students to submit these films to the International Ocean Film Festival and the Noe Valley Girls Film Festival (started by Hamlin girls).

Samantha Weaver has been deeply involved with the film world since her mid-twenties; acting, producing, casting, writing, among other film-related endeavors.

Hamlin School students asked Ms. Weaver questions related to both the process and the challenges involved with making films.

Below are some of the key points that she made:

-Inspiration is definitely needed when making a film. You have to listen to what is important to you and why.

-On a longer film you will spend hundreds and hundreds of hours making it, so staying inspired is crucial.

-How much time do you have to tell your story? Are you making a short film? What do you need? An iPhone? Software? Do you have to hire people to help you?

-You have to love what you do, it can take 3-4 years for a film to go from script to the theater. There is the writing, the shooting, then post-production with editing and sound.

-In the earlier stages of brainstorming don’t hold back any ideas, just let your creative thinking flow.

-I was inspired to make documentary films because they provided me with an opportunity to learn about a person’s life or an event that happened. I love to continually learn.

-My favorite documentary that I helped produce was, “Straight Outta Hunter’s Point.” A whole section of San Francisco is build on toxic waste that the Navy dumped there. The cancer rate in Hunter’s Point is extremely high because of where it is situated.

-I’m in the early brainstorming stages for my next project. I hope to co-create something with my husband. I will be sure to let you know about it!

Students Win 1st Place at International Ocean Film Festival

On March 11, four dynamic Grade 7 filmmakers won first place in the middle school student section of the 15th Annual International Ocean Film Festival held in San Francisco, California. Allie, Avery, Dani, and Helena, were recognized for their film, Strawbucks.

Strawbucks is a short film that interweaves detailed information connecting the use of plastic straws (in businesses like Starbucks), to the growing Great Pacific Garbage Patch. The film utilizes interviews with Hamlin students to create a powerful narrative, urging viewers to replace their plastic straws with ones that are more environmentally friendly (metal, glass).

You can watch the film below: