Ryan Chartrand

Cal Poly’s film students are at it again, this time advocating the need for a film major after the screening of the new artistic film, “the butterflywheel.”

The film will premiere Dec. 5, from 7 to 8 p.m. at Cisco’s in the Network downtown.

The 10-minute film portrays the story of a man hired to assassinate a virtual reality girl, who he eventually falls in love with and is unable to kill, said director and English senior Mike Campa.

“This movie is really about the choice between duty and love, but it is also about the movies we watch,” Campa said. “Even though they are fake, they still affect us. So, even though he killed this virtual reality girl it still affects him.”

The black-and-white film started as a class project for professor David Gillette’s English 411 class. Ten of his 45 students were chosen to be a part of the film core and assigned jobs such as producer, director and cinematographer. The remaining 35 students work on the set as actors, extras or as part of the backstage crew, Campa said.

Besides the class project, “the butterflywheel” held another purpose. Students and teachers have discussed the need for a film major and this was their way to show the interest and talent Cal Poly students have in film-making, said cinematographer and psychology senior Chelsey Dubiel.

“I have always really loved movies – the way they move people and the way they can show people worlds they have never been exposed to,” said producer and English senior Victoria Pintar. “(The movie) made me aware that it is hard to tell a good story visually and really get your audience to feel attachment to you topic and the people. That is the most interesting thing I learned.”

The story was a collective idea the students created in the first two weeks of the quarter, Dubiel said.

The group spent endless hours brainstorming the story line, then wrote the script and shot the film 15 hours a day for two days straight, Dubiel said.

“From the beginning, I never really had definite expectations. But I was adamant from the beginning that I wanted something that had its own quirks to it and wasn’t mainstream,” Dubiel said. “I definitely like the non-conventional films. That is where I draw my inspiration from.”

Gillette’s class created the film without a budget. Students paid for most of the expenses, and therefore a donation box will be available at the screening.

“We spent about $500 out of pocket making this film, but there is a $3 suggested donation,” Campa said.

Campa added that the students are currently looking for some private investments in order to submit the film to festivals across the country.

The Dec. 5 screening will include the film’s trailer, a presentation on making the film and the premiere of “the butterflywheel.”

“I am very curious to see what people think,” Dubiel said. “But I think it turned out pretty well and I am proud of it.”

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *