The Buzz 2013
Directors: R.T. Hardiman and Mike McKeon
Asst. Directors: Erin LeBlanc
Art Director: Cassidy Andrews
Actors: Elias MBogga and Mike McKeon
Production Asst: Eric Folan
Music: Chris Nee
Written by: R.T. Hardiman and Chris Nash
Since going silent this crew has been hard at work. They’ve hit some pitfalls along the way—Elias getting his hair buzzed off after shooting his first three scenes—but their determination has kept them ahead of schedule. Their blistering pace is mainly due to the fact that they don’t have to worry about audio; however, they’ll need all the extra time to tell their story in post-production. The task of keeping the audience entertained during this silent film is not an easy one. So far their footage has been impressive, but it is hard to tell if it will all work until the music is done. Luckily for them, Chris Nee is doing their music. As always, Plum has been doing a great job of keeping their movie on everyone’s radar, so there is considerable buzz swirling around this film.
Buzz: A venti cup of black coffee
Music Trivs: This is not the best Music-Trivs crew, but they have panache. Like the time when R.T. heard Rod Stuart from across the hall, ran in, sat down, gave the answer, then ran off. They get the songs in their wheelhouse—unfortunately, their wheelhouse is not that big.
Directors: Steve Bean and Ryan Erwin
Asst. Directors: Molly Breen and Genevieve Canavan
Actors: Ryan Erwin, Mike Rando, and Mr. St. Martin
Music: Mike Rando
Written by: Ally Russo, Molly Breen, and Holly Norberg
Every year there is one movie that purposely flies under everyone’s radar. This year it’s Extra Credit. This is largely due to the fact that the two directors are very busy with winter sports. They don’t have a lot of scenes completed at this point, but what they do have is good stuff. There is a critical scene that they decided to set in the new town library; that footage, in particular, looks great. Perhaps the biggest asset this film has is Mr. St. Martin, who portrays the scheming Math teacher behind all the insane extra-credit tasks. St. Martin is gunning to be the first two-time winner of Best Faculty Performer. Despite his great role, he’ll still have to best O’Malley and Jean in the Wombat—which will be tough! Erwin has been impressive on screen, and Mike Rando has surprised some with his acting talent thus far in a supporting role. They’ll have to pick up the pace as soon as winter sports finishes up. The result of their sluggish pace, the small size of their crew, and their aloof presence in film class has all greatly diminished the overall buzz surrounding the film.
Buzz: A tall tai-chi tea
Music Trivs: Erwin is a superstar. The kid rattled off 17 points in 10 minutes of play. From time to time, St. Martin plays for them and does well with rap and the 80s. When Erwin plays this is the best team; when he is not there, they are a non-factor.
Directors: Rachel St. Germain and Jim “Lambo” Lombardi
Editor: John Barry
Art Director: Stephanie Saba
Actors: Ross Bubly, John Barry, Mr. O’Malley, and Mr. Jean
Production Asst: Brian Chiem
Music: Jimmy Martin
Written by: Anthony Earabino, Luke Witherell, and John Montiquilla
Take a good look at the cast of actors in this movie. Add them together. Result: gold. These guys are hysterical on screen. The script is funny enough, but add in Bubly and Barry as the two bumbling students and it just gets ridiculous. A key decision was made (by the screenwriters) to make The Wombat in the vein of the campy 60s Batman series. This gives the crew a huge advantage because any bad shot or ridiculous costume gaffe can be chalked up to the style of the film. (Similar to how a third of the film A Serious Student was shot out-of-focus; they dismissed this as adding to the main character’s overall confusion.) I’ve only seen a bit of their stuff, but I can tell you that O’Malley and Jean are immediate front-runners for Best Faculty Performance. Would it be weird or appropriate for Jean to win the award the year after we honored him with a Faculty Appreciation award for not winning the award? Regardless, these two are just insane on screen in their costumes. Gold. Also, despite getting off to a rocky start, this crew has managed to get a good chunk of their film shot. Of course, it is nearly impossible to keep a movie like this under the radar. Everyone is buzzing about this movie—especially graduates. Adding fuel to their buzz is the mysterious Dingo who has been tweeting periodically at the Wombat crew. Here is one of my favorite tweets:
“So… I was just fighting my enemy, the flu. Of course, I victoriously victoried him. I’ve heard from my inside man that wombat is slow.. HA” @TheDingo
Classic. Keep it up, Mr. Dingo.
Buzz: A triple shot expresso with sugar no milk.
Music Trivs: Rachel is an under-rated player; she is good for a few points every contest. They have a star in Jimmy Martin. Lambo sits back and waits for Lincoln Park to play—and even when it does, he only gets it 30% of the time.
Directors: Erin Batchelder and Chris Nash
Actors: Mike Griffin and Maddy Waple
Art Director: Erin Batchelder
Music: Mikey Van der Linden
Written by: Erin Batchelder
Batchy is channeling Wes Anderson in directing this movie. I like the style and it certainly will add pizzazz to the film. So far, Batchy has browbeaten and harassed Griffin to get the performance she wants out of him. And Maddy has been great in a role that she was thrust into at the beginning of production. I just hope that Batchy can maintain focus on this project or be distracted by her next movie. (Yes. Batchy wants to do TWO movies this year.) I am excited to see how this all plays out, but for now Batchy is keeping her footage under tight wraps. So we’ll have to wait and see.
Buzz: Caramel Frappuccino Light Blended Beverage
Music-Trivs: Batchy is a dominant force to be reckoned with in Music trivs. She dominates the independent music whenever it is played—although Erwin snags some away from her every now and again. Griff does all right with his genres (we just are unsure as to what these are). Waple is great at the country junk and top 100 songs. Because of all her work on the 10-year documentary last year, Batchy knows her film-fest trivs probably better than anyone. For that reason, this crew is the favorite to take it all at the wrap party.
Directors: Michelle Monahan and Doug Stewart
Asst. Director/Art Director: Elizabeth “E” Ryan
Editor: Lina “Heidi” Feeley
Actors: Eric Jansen, Evan Parsons, and Sam McChesney
Production Asst: Mike McCarthy
Music: Caleb Cofsky
Written by: Michelle Monahan
This crew is on a blistering pace since production started. They work well together and are always on task. This script got a lot of hype last year, but we held it for Michelle to direct herself. I’m glad we did. So far their footage looks great. They have some very funny cameos—Harry Berkland and Mr. Balkus—and Evan and Eric are doing well capturing the light-hearted feel of the film. This film lacks the big faculty performances to generate the big buzz; it reminds me more of a Full Windsor, with its crew just doing a solid job of getting the goods. I wouldn’t be surprised if, like Windsor, it does well come time for nominations.
Buzz: Iced Caffè Mocha.
Music Trivs: So music-trivs is not their thing…oh well. These guys are just happy to play and try to beat out Plum (which they may do!). When Jackfruit gets one right the class knows it because they scream like they just won it all. Feeley is their best player—she knows her Bruce.
Directors: Phil Reidy, Jess McNamara, and Chris Barajas
Art Director: Barmakian and Cat Murphy
Editor: Chris Barajas and Phil Reidy
Actors: Mike Van der Linden
Asst. Director: Kevin Delaney
Asst. to J. McNamara: Cat Murphy
Boom-mic Operator: Brendan Sullivan
Music: Maria Earabino
Written by: Phil Reidy and Chris Barajas
Every year brings a production that has trouble getting the ball rolling. This year it’s The Door. They wanted Mikey Van der Linden as their lead; however, while Mikey is a talented actor, he is not in film and has a busy after-school schedule. This has resulted in few scenes shot. During class, this crew has trouble finding productive tasks to help their movie along. I think that they can get it all done, but they have to move. They need to try and break scenes up and get the shots they can without their lead actor. Jess has taken a more active role recently in getting some of the shots, which has helped. Ultimately, these guys just need to get organized and get the goods. They can be one of the first films to take advantage of the new Adobe After Effects if they can get the footage with enough time to edit in post.
Buzz: Tazo Shaken Iced Passion Tea Lemonade
Music-Trivs: Whatever music-trivs prowess that Pat Maloney had last year he has bequeathed upon Phil Reidy—this came complete with shouting out answers at a much higher octave than needed. Somehow J. Mac manages to sneak out 3 to 5 points every time by just picking up the scraps left behind by other crews—like another crew will guess twice and J. Mac will be right there to take their second correct answer and get the points. This crew is solid and has been fighting it out with Avocado and Pineapple for the top spot. They did, however, lose considerable ground with Phil being in Germany during February break.
Director: Hannah Mullen
Asst. Directors: Ali Ajemian and Mike Habib
Art Director: Keiko Ivinson
Actors: Kyle Raftery and Alex Marcinkowski
Production Asst: Kevin Delaney
Music: Brian Hazerjian
Written by: John Montiquilla and Hannah Mullen
One word that never comes to mind when people think about Hannah Mullen is quiet. And, yet, Hannah has quietly been plugging along and getting her movie done. This seems quite remarkable considering that both her actors don’t take film. Somehow Hannah has made it work thus far—as of February break, she has half her movie shot. Her two asst. directors, Mike and Ali, have helped her with the editing and organizing, but she will need everything to come together for some of her bigger shoots left. I haven’t seen much of her footage, but from what I’ve seen it looks like another strong performance by Kyle, and Alex is sure to get a lot of laughs. And if Jungbin can act as well as he can play Sporkle, they’ll be fine.
Buzz: Tall Iced Coffee with cream and sugar
Music Trivs: If these guy play at full capacity, they’ll be fine. Kyle is a formidable player, but he doesn’t get to play often as he is not in the class. I think they’ll have a tough time climbing out of the lower tier to the mid-range crews.
Directors: Jackie Gately, Matt Johnson, and Ashley Waldron
Asst. Directors: Tyler “T. Paz” Paslaski and Cat Murphy
Editor: A.J. Quinlan
Art Directors: Jenn MacDonald, Ashley Waldron, and Cat Murphy
Actors: Jackie Gately, Caleb Cofsky, and Mr. Bakale
Music: Isabella Caraccioli
Written by: Jackie Gately
This movie is one of those movies with a lot of set pieces and art direction. As a result, they were in a holding pattern as they got all their costumes and sets in place—this included painting a classroom in Plimpton. Now that this is all done, they have picked up the pace considerably. Their Bakale stuff (set in heaven) looks great—and Bakale is always solid. This movie could also stretch the boundaries of what we’re capable of in terms of special effects. They do intend to make use of Adobe After Effects if they have the time. As people see the elaborate sets and wardrobe come to life the buzz continues to grow. That being said, these guys are up against the clock to get it all done. They’ve hit some serious obstacles—last-minute recasts, black eyes, and lost footage—so now they have to hustle.This film marks the end of two remarkable film festival careers: Jackie Gately and Matt Johnson. These two both started as freshmen; I know that both of them want to go out on a high note.
Buzz: Cup of black coffee
Music Trivs: Somehow this team has been at the top or near the top in Music Trivs all year. They don’t have any superstars at the same level as an Erwin or Batchy, yet they continue to rack up the points. I think that each of the members does well with his or her genre. Whatever the reason, they continue to lead the pack heading into mid-way through production.
Directors: Brian Kelleher, Marc Sheehan, and Brian “Baby” Tracey
Asst. Directors: Montana Gilabrand
Editors: Chris Gallivan, Lawrence , Marc Sheehan
Art Directors: Jenn MacDonald, Ashley Waldron, and Cat Murphy
Actors: Jack Stedman and Jessie Jones
Music: Nell Gordon and Caroline Falvey
Written by: Marc Sheehan, Baby Tracey, and Brian Kelleher
Meet the future of the WHS film festival: The Cloudberry Crew. These young upstarts mean business. They worked hard on perfecting their screenplay and have since put a tremendous amount of time and effort into production. They are here nearly every day after school shooting and editing. Over February break they were here at 6:00 AM to edit! All of this has resulted in them having only 4 scenes left to shoot as February break comes to an end. Pretty remarkable seeing that most films are barely halfway done. B.K., and Montana have done a nice job with their shot compositions and shot selections. It is always hard to generate buzz being an independent production; it is also equally hard to garner some nominations from the Academy. So far, though, these guys have grabbed other crews’ attention with their hard work. If they keep the hard work up, I wouldn’t be surprised if they grab the attention of some Academy members in May.
Buzz: Caffè Misto
Music-Trivs: For a fledgling fruit, these guys hold their own. I think they’ll be battling other bottom-tier teams just because they’re not in the class and lack a true all-star. What they lack in talent, however, they make up for in sheer numbers. There have been times over break where they had near 15 students playing and Bakale.
Director: Andrea Lee
Asst. Directors: Becky Chariton and Darci Bruce
Editors: Andrea Lee and Ricky Sgaglia
Art Directors: Becky Chariton and Darci Bruce
Actors: Brendan Chaisson, Darci Bruce, Becky Chariton, and Bobby Rose
Music: Conor Godfrey and Bobby Rose
Written by: Emma Batting and Lorna D’Sa
Sometimes the best thing for a director is to be a part of a dysfunctional crew when they’re a junior. This gives them a lesson in how not to run a crew. Essentially, this was the case with both Andrea and Darci last year. And it is demonstrably clear that both have learned their lesson. This crew is very organized and on task. They have been on a tear since the start of second semester when Brendan was able to join them during period 5 film class. To date, this crew has filmed all their school scenes, now they have to wait till the snow melts for the outside scenes. The trouble is Mother Nature has refused to cooperate. With more snow on the way before we get back from February break, this crew needs to think outside of the box to get this movie done in time. The buzz has always been swirling around this movie largely because everyone has been asking for a Senior Assassins movie for the past 6 years.
Buzz: A Caffè Americano
Music-Trivs: These guys are performing at a higher level than anyone expected in classroom games, but lost a lot of ground over February break. I think they might make a late-in-the-game run at the wrap party because of the film-fest trivs, which I am sure Andrea and Darci will do well with—plus Andrea has home-field advantage.
Director: Sydney King and Jo-Jo Haswell
Asst. Directors: Nell Sandvos, Lena Ford, Bridget Nicholson, and Scott Marcum
Music: Mike Rando
The hardest thing in making a documentary about a sports team is finding a story. The crew needs to engage the audience and make them care about the outcome of their film; if not, it will degenerate into a highlight film. The choice of the hockey team was definitely the right choice for this year. We have several key players on different crews and a good working relationship with the new coach. From the onset of the season, this crew focused on the heated rivalry between Walpole and Norwood. They got lucky with the first meeting of these two teams ending in a tie. But they quickly lost that momentum in a late-season slide, which included a 5-1 loss to Norwood on their home ice. I told the crew that this is essentially the crisis of their story; hopefully, the team can rally and redeem themselves in the playoffs. If not, that story will be even harder to craft. What I meant is that a documentary crew cannot sit back and wait for the story to fall in their lap…or can it? Turns out that Walpole drew Norwood in the first round of the playoffs! Unbelievable, since these two only met one other time in the playoffs in 1965! Win or lose, this could be a great story! A good documentary can have quite the impact on the audience—The Recovery—and do some damage with nominations. I know this crew wants it and is working hard; they just need to make sure they get the goods.
Buzz: Peppermint Hot Chocolate
Music Trivs: These guys need a heavy-hitter; they are languishing near the bottom.
Directors: Casey White, Daria Grady, Noah Kung, Nick Morey, and Maggie Moriaty
Asst. Directors: Frank Welter, Remy Love, and Leslie Hill
Editors: Remy Love, Frank Welter, and Craig Wilson
Art Directors: CJ Weinacht, Lauren Messina, and Valerie Lancy
Actors: Daria Grady, Meg Driscoll, Frank DeBlasio, and Harvest Perez
Music: Brendan Chin and Marissa Glover
Written by: Daria Grady and Casey White
This movie is being done largely as an in-class workshop to teach the Film I kids how to make a movie. In the past we’ve done short films, but since we had this script that the writers—Casey and Daria—desperately wanted to try and make this year, I gave it the green light. Even with everyday of class designated for filming, it will be a squeeze to get this thing done in time. I think we have a few juniors who will learn a lot from this experience and make excellent directors next year. They’ve already improved in the few weeks that we’ve been shooting. The buzz for this movie has consisted of other crews saying, “Wait, we have another movie?” However, since the size of the crew is so large I think that the buzz will build as they near completion.
Buzz: The sheer size of this crew means that it is bound to accrue some music-trivs points. They don’t have any standouts, but somehow have managed to keep pace with some of the other lower-tier crews.