High School Day in the Dallas Arts District | 2015 Dallas International Film Festival—April 9-19

High School Day in the Dallas Arts District

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DIFF 2015 High School DayHundreds of students and teachers from more than 40 DFW high schools will convene in Klyde Warren Park to learn from filmmakers and other professionals through panel discussions and hands-on workshops. Attendees will discover how to produce their ideas, create visual FX, perform stunts, learn the important elements of a documentary, film history, and much more!


Confirmed high school students will split into groups and be directed to various Arts District venues for sessions on:

  • Producing 101
  • Forced Perspective & Visual FX
  • Stunts for the Camera
  • What Makes a Great Documentary
  • How You Can Make Film History


Renée Contreras
Director of Membership, Education & Outreach

Ladan Ghannadpour
Membership, Education & Outreach Coordinator


Stunts for the Camera presented by Freddie Poole’s Martial Arts
What do Sylvester Stallone, Ben Affleck, Robert Rodriguez, and many other notable actors have in common? Freddie Poole! With more than 15 major motion pictures and television shows coming out this past year and in 2015, this professional stuntman is more than qualified to instruct STUNTS FOR THE CAMERA workshop. This workshop will focus on the individual’s ability to act with their bodies in accordance with action sequences in film and TV. Actors will learn how to “sell hits” from specific camera angles and how those angles produce realistic results. Learn tips on “selling reactions and falls” on camera, including a performance of a short choreographed fight sequence.

Forced Perspective & Visual FX presented by MediaTech Institute
The art of Forced Perspective has been around almost as long as movies themselves. Modern movies such as the LORD OF THE RINGS series combine the use of forced perspective and modern digital effects to create worlds never before seen. During this short class students will create a visual effect by combining student actors with a spaceship model using this fascinating technique. Digital effects such as laser beams and sound effects will be added on the spot to create a cool, one-of-a-kind, digital film clip the students can view and download from the Internet!

How You Can Make Film History presented by Southern Methodist University Film & Media Arts
Who gets to write the history of film? Who is in charge of what gets remembered and what gets forgotten? This workshop gives you the reigns as you attempt to answer these questions, discussing not only how you can make film history, but also how to make it come alive.

What Makes a Great Documentary presented by Southern Methodist University Film & Media Arts and University of North Texas Radio-TV-Film Department of Media Arts
In this class, students will gain an understanding of how the documentary genre has evolved over decades of filmmaking. Professor Rick Worland will provide students with a brief history of documentary filmmaking, and lead a discussion on how these films differ from their Hollywood counterparts. By viewing clips of classic examples from the past alongside contemporary works of today, students will also learn some of the important skills and techniques that go into the making of a great documentary film.

Producing 101 presented by Women in Film Dallas and Dallas Producers Association
Learn about the craft of producing films, television, commercials and corporate branding videos. Producers Kerri Navarro and Erin Elizabeth Gardner will you give you a glimpse into their tool kits to show you who and what it takes to make the production world go round. Explore how a producer takes an idea and turns it into a visual masterpiece.





L.M. Kit Carson (Posthumously)
Lone Star State legend and influential writer, actor and producer Carson first gained recognition as creator of the mockumentary, DAVID HOLZMAN’s DIARY (1968), and co-wrote PARIS, TEXAS (1984).

Blythe Danner
Danner is well regarded for her roles in films such as MEET THE PARENTS and THE GREAT SANTINI. The Emmy-winning and Golden Globe-nominated actress is alos know for her work on television shows such as Will & Grace and Huff.

John Landis
A director for more than 40 years, Landis' films include NATIONAL LAMPOON’S ANIMAL HOUSE (1980), THE BLUES BROTHERS (1978) and AN AMERICAN WEREWOLF IN LONDON (1981).

Learn more about the honorees

Presented by REEL FX

Phil Lord and Chris Miller
are the prolific writing and directing duo behind some of today’s most successful comedy films including, THE LEGO MOVIE, 21 & 22 JUMP STREET and CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS.

Learn more about the honorees


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