SBVC’s Wolverine Con and Film Festival Brings the Arts Back to Campus
Movie makers and lovers came together for the 2022 Wolverine Con and 11th Annual International Student Film Festival at San Bernardino Valley College.
Running March 30 to April 2, this year’s theme was “Heroes & Villains.” The event kicked off with an expo and several panel discussions, including “From Hero to Zero Back to Hero: Inclusivity of Film” and “The Villain’s Quest.” More than 76 films were screened during the festival, and guests also had the chance to walk the red carpet to a showing of the best movies created during the Inland Empire 48 Hour Film Project.
This was the first in-person Wolverine Con and International Student Film Festival since the start of the pandemic. Both events were “a blast this year,” Lucas Cuny, faculty chair of SBVC’s Film, Television, and Media Department and director of the Institute of Media Arts, said. “I think mainly because we were able to celebrate media arts as they should be: face to face.”
Highlights of Wolverine Con include graphic arts students from the SBVC Art Department showcasing their zines; representatives from Panavision discussing their new filmmaker grant program and demonstrating how to work a camera system; and a presentation from cinematographer Gus Bendinelli.
“He shared with the department his desire to bring more of our students to Hollywood and help make sure Hollywood continues to pursue better diversity, equity, and inclusion,” Cuny said.
Films were screened by filmmakers from as far away as Alaska and Canada, and several SBVC student projects won awards: the Grand Jury Prize went to Zach Gutierrez for Airdrop; Best Sound Design was won by Oscar Bermudez for Night of Armageddon; Best Documentary was awarded to Dominic Garcez and Briana Navarro for Meet the I.E.; and Best Editing went to Romeo Lorenzo Apalit for Sleepless. Apalit, a 2020 SBVC graduate, is now a student at California State University San Bernardino.
Organizers are already preparing for the 2023 Wolverine Con and 12th Annual International Student Film Festival, set to run Feb. 28 through March 3. The theme is “Classic Hollywood,” and a new category is being added to the festival: Silent Film. Cuny is also planning to coordinate with SBVC’s Art, Theater, and Music Departments to hold an open house showcasing the media arts departments on campus.