SUNNYVALE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--“The Offering,” a short animated film produced by Cogswell Polytechnical College will kick-off the New York City International Film Festival (NYCIFF http://www.nyciff.com/) Premier Opening event on August 12 as the lead-in to “Lovely, Still,” a film starring Martin Landau and Ellen Burstyn. During the Festival that runs from August 12 to 19, event organizer, Roberto Rizzo, will also include “The Offering” in a set of select films to be showcased in Times Square.
“We made the decision to submit ‘The Offering’ as a professional rather than student work and are honored to be selected – and to win awards – on this basis,” said Dr. Chester Haskell, President of Cogswell. “We think the Project X class structure will become the model for how institutions deliver digital media art education in the future.”
“What a fantastic opportunity for thousands of people from all over the world to see our film,” said film Director, Michael Zachary Huber, Assistant Professor at Cogswell. “Times Square is one of ‘the’ places to go when you visit New York so to have our film shown there is amazing. It’s gratifying to see how well all the students’ hard work and our innovative program has turned out.”
“The Offering” makes its NYC debut this month at the 7th Annual New York City Downtown Short Film Festival Audience Choice Screenings. It is slated to appear in the June 25th block of films at the Duo Theater beginning at 8:00pm. During the Audience Choice screenings viewers watch 4 to 5 films and then vote on their favorite. The top vote getters are invited to participate in the 2011 NYC Downtown Short Film Festival (NYCDSFF) next April. Tickets – which are only $10 – and additional details are available at SmartTix.
“The Offering” is the first film developed by the special production group composed of students, alumni and industry professionals that make up the Project X team. Many more films will follow in its footsteps. “The Offering” was completed during the summer of 2009 and is currently making the film festival rounds. The film itself is over seven minutes long and the product of thousands of man-hours of labor. Besides being visually compelling, it also boasts an amazing sound track by composer Jeremy Soule.
Project X has been fortunate enough to have at its disposal industry leading software from Pixar. Also, the class has had visits and access to some of the best artists in the business from companies including ILM, PDI/DreamWorks, Electronic Arts and Sony Pictures Imageworks, just to mention a few. Guests from various studios offered their services as they critiqued and mentored during the process.
One of the secrets of Project X (http://www.projectxfilms.com/) is that it does not run like a regular class but rather a full-blown film production company. Hours are grueling, aesthetics are very demanding and the artists are treated like professionals and not students. This total immersion creates an environment conducive to quality, camaraderie and the highest production value. We believe it’s the best way to learn.
“When Michael Huber came to us with his vision for training the next generation of animators, we knew this would put Cogswell College on the cutting-edge of digital media arts education,” said Haskell. “The College has supported the project 100%, as it provides a fully professional context and experience for students. We strongly believe that we have achieved the goals of the Project X class by giving students an advantage in the work force through the production experience they gained and the high-end demo reel material they now have to show to potential employers.”
“The Offering” portrays a girl on the brink of womanhood and how she learns that a gift of something important given from the heart means more to the recipient than trying to use her feminine charms to gain approval. At the beginning she is irresistibly drawn inside a temple where the transformation from girl to woman begins. She performs the sacred dance of seduction before the temple deity but receives no response. She exits the temple assuming defeat. One last glance reveals even Gods are not immune to a woman’s power – especially her giving spirit. Watch the trailer (http://www.cogswell.edu/offering_trailer.htm).
“While creating ‘The Offering,’ our team had one major goal – to produce something beautiful. True beauty transcends culture and time. We wanted to create a film that would withstand the test of both,” said Huber. “Every decision while making the film centered on that single goal. To achieve this objective, the crew expended pains-taking efforts in the crafting of every asset that went into the animation. We wanted to create something that had amazing production value, was entertaining and overall awesome. I can only hope that the viewer sees and feels what we have tried so very hard to bring to life.”
The Offering has garnered a number of awards including “Best Short Animation” from the 9th Tiburon International Film Festival, “The Shoestring Trophy” from the 52nd Rochester International Film Festival, “A Rising Star Award for Excellence in Filmmaking” from the 3rd Canada Film Festival and an “Indie Award of Merit” from The Indie Fest. The film has also been an Official Selection for festivals that include the 10th Beverly Hills Film Festival, 34th Atlanta Film Festival, 11th Newport Beach Film Festival and the 5th Jersey Shore Film Festival.
About Cogswell Polytechnical College
Located in Silicon Valley, Cogswell offers bachelor degree programs in Digital Art and Animation (with majors in Game Development, Animation, Entertainment Design and 3D Modeling, http://www.cogswell.edu/program_daa.htm), Digital Audio Technology (with majors in Audio Production, Audio Engineering and Sound Work, http://www.cogswell.edu/program_daa.htm) and Engineering (Digital Arts, Computer and Software, http://www.cogswell.edu/program_eng.htm). As one of the Bay Area’s premier colleges, its novel academic approach offers an integrated model that emulates the industry environment – a collaborative, project-based, learning environment that uses multidisciplinary teams to take projects from concept through the delivery pipeline.