A filmmaking team from Belton New Tech High showcased its award-winning video “Call Me Back” at The Beltonian Theatre this past Wednesday. The community received the film with high remarks, as patrons lined up to purchase tickets for the event. The team took questions from the audience following the film. The team, which consisted of six seniors from Belton New Tech High, competed at this year’s UIL State Young Filmmakers Festival, earning first place for their film. Brandon Garcia, Nathan Jehl, Morgan Jones, Casey Roberts, Evan Seils, and Marcelo Torre all competed for the first time, making the film much more memorable.
The UIL State Young Filmmakers Festival consisted of 224 entries in the Division II category; Belton New Tech High made it to the final round with five other competitors. The school’s winning of first place was announced at the State Festival, which took place at the Paramount Theatre in Austin. Kristie Shepherd, who is the team’s Film Coach and Audio/Video Instructor, couldn’t have been proud: “It’s been a wonderful experience,” said Shepherd.
Throughout the competition, the team considered doing a multitude of different types of films, from a silent type to a comedy; however, the team decided that the film would take on a serious and sullen mood. “Call Me Back” focuses on the story of one teenager who expresses his relationship with his father through multiple unanswered voicemail messages. The film was shot and edited by the filming team, along with help from other students as actors.
“We would film for hours at a time,” explained Seils, who was one of the Editors/Writers for the film.
The students took advantage of their nearby resources to help in the production of the film. Scenes were filmed at various areas in Belton, from The Gin Complex in Downtown Belton to the UMHB Nursing Center. The film team was even able to acquire an open house from Sunburst Realty to film one of the final scenes, allowing the team to create a more life-like setting for the film: “Making something and having someone feel emotion for it is the best part,” said Marcelo Torre.