At the Hamlin School, we teach girls “to meet the challenges of their time.” Current 5th and 7th graders Caitlin, Maggie, Ella, and Charlotte sought in vain to find a film festival geared towards girls who want to make movies in San Francisco. In a Noe Valley Voice interview, Caitlin states, “We wanted to inspire young girls to make films, because there just are not a lot of female filmmakers in the industry.” Taking up the challenge, these Hamlin girls created the Noe Valley Girls Film Festival which took place at the Noe Valley Ministry on September 10th in front of a full house of 315 attendees. At the festival, 18 shorts were screened, but there were a total of 70 films submitted by elementary school age girls from all around the world. The films were evaluated by a team of judges and awarded $250, $150, and $50 in two different age categories.
On the day of the event, one of the judges, Mimi Zora from Pixar shared the following with the founders,”Your ability to take an idea and make it into a reality is truly awesome. I’m glad my one year-old daughter will have role models like you as she grows up in Noe Valley. When you asked me to be a judge I thought….’Movies made by ten year-olds, this will be cute.’ What I didn’t expect was to see such sophisticated storytelling and quality production.” Hamlin’s Middle School Division Head, Rose Helm attended the event. She adds, “I loved seeing the girls put on this festival. I’m so impressed with their public speaking, tech skills, and inspiration to all girls!”
In the film, Girls On Deck, director and former Hamlin student Riley, (she now lives in southern California), went around to skate parks in San Francisco to find out why there aren’t more female skaters. You can watch this 5-minute investigative documentary film below.
Special thanks to Serena Schuler, the maker of the award winning film The Ten Plagues who spoke at the event. Thanks as well to the organization Elphenworks who awarded the film festival $250. Also, big thanks to Hamlin volunteers Palmer, Lila, Elanor, Indigo, and especially Savannah who shared several beautiful songs on her guitar.
To learn more and support the Noe Valley Girls Film Festival, please visit: