‘Best 9-12’ Serling Fest Award Goes to Niskayuna Native
Evan Pritchard is a upstate New York filmmaker from Niskayuna, New York. He is attending Purchase College as a freshman. Evan has a strong passion for storytelling and the art of film. He hopes to someday make his hope and passion into a career. Evan has previously been honored for his past films Believe and Les Milkerables.
What is your film about?
Why God? Tells the story of a young boy struggling with his faith due to the impact of outside forces in his life.
How did you come up with the idea for your film?
The idea for this film first stemmed from a single sentence I wrote down in passing – “Religion and Culture today”. At the time I was thinking mostly the Islamophobia going on within our society today. As the idea and sentence began to grow I realized the best way to show a story about holding faith when religion is looked down upon, was to tell my own story. Why God? Is a collection of my encounters as well as some of my friends encounters with ideas that challenge their faith. My idea was to give as broad ideas as I could to make it possible for any major religion could be applied.
Talk about your approach to the story and the technical elements you used.
My main goal was to make people think after they finish the movie, I always what them to have something to take away from my work. By keeping this goal in mind, I tried to present these experiences that I and some of my friend have encountered without truly taking a side. I tried to leave that up for the audience. My idea was that the viewer was to decide whether or not our protagonist left his faith or not. So everyone sees the same film but in different ways. The film follows the thoughts of the protagonist as he comes to grasps with whether or not religion can fit into his life. I tried to make the transitions into the thoughts as seamless as possible using audio to transition the audience into the next scene. The whole film is based sort of nonlinearly so I tried my best to help the audience distinguish what is a memory and what is not. At some point, I found this piece had become so personal that I was basically allowing people to have a look into my life, so I am very glad to have such a positive response.
Thank you for sharing your film with WSKG! How did you hear about the Festival?
My wonderful high school film teacher. He always pushed us to express our true selves and to put our hard work and stories out for the public to experience.
Which part of this filmmaking experience did you enjoy most?
I love every aspect of the filmmaking process; storyboarding and writing brings me joy, being on a shoot always excites me; and staring at a screen putting the pieces into their perfect place is my meditation.
Anything else you’d like to share?
This film festival has been such a great experience for me. I would highly recommend any young filmmaker to submit their work to this film festival. It is truly rare that at such a young age a film festival truly looks at as fellow artist rather than a kid with a camera.
The 2017 Rod Serling Film Festival will be held at the Art Mission and Theater on Sunday, October 8, 2017 at 3pm, in partnership with Binghamton Film Weekend.