World premiere at 26th annual Santa Barbara Film Festival

Briitta Suopanki

On Saturday Feb. 5, City College film production majors Andrej Landin and Alex Kilauano’s short films will premiere during the 26th edition of the prestigious Santa Barbara International Film Festival.

 “It’s a great honor and I’m really excited that I got in,” said 22-year-old Alex Kilauano.

“There are hundreds of people who send in their films to the festival but only 10 to 15 people are chosen. They go through a screening process to be accepted and the competition is hard,” said former film festival judge and Department Chair of Film and Television Production Curtis Bieber.

“It’s a small number of students who have shown their work at a film festival before,” Bieber said.

This year the festival will show around 170 films from 49 countries including 30 world premieres and 33 U.S. premieres. Celebrities like Leonardo DiCaprio, Nicole Kidman, James Franco, and Christopher Nolan will also attend.

“It is the first movie I’m ever showing at a film festival so I’m really excited about it, it will be a lot of fun.” said 23-year-old Swede Andrej Landin.

“I wanted to make a movie about life,” Landin said. “Life does not always end happy.”

Landin’s film “Desolate Roads” is about a young man who receives word from his mother about his dying father and wants him to come home to say goodbye. It’s told through a series of flashbacks about the turbulent father and son relationship.

“Hollywood always wants to portray life as a happy ending but that’s not the point, that’s not the case always,” he said. “I wanted to make from the other side of life, the sad part of life.”

It took Landin two weeks to write the script. He found his crew and main actor quickly and it took them about two weeks to shoot the film. The editing process on the other hand took about four months. In total it was about a six-month process.

“The budget for the movie was around $250. In order for the festival to show it on a big screen it’s about another $200 dollars to convert the format,” Landin said. All of the funds came from his own pocket.

The other short from City College is Kilauano’s 13-minute drama, “Continuum”. Inspired by other time machine movies like “The Time Travelers Wife” and “Back to the Future,” the plot follows a kid scientist who goes back in time and tries to save his father who was shot before he was born.

“It’s kind of about how you can’t change the past because it’s already happened,” Kilauano said.

“If someone was to change time, it would have already happened, it would have been this continuous cycle. That’s when I kind of had the idea to do it.”

Kiluano, who has been at City College for three years planned the script for a long time but started working on pre-production and casting during the 2010 fall semester. The whole shooting process took about a month. And a one-minute scene could take up to two days to shoot.

“If it did cost me anything it probably cost me a lot of sleep and stress,” Kilauano said.

“It always feels good when students succeed,” said Curtis Bieber Department Chair of Film and Television Production. “I feel proud of them and happy for them.”

“I expect great things from them in the future,” Bieber said. “Both are multi talented.”