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UNIVERSITY OF OREGON

CINEMA STUDIES AN INTEGRAL BLEND OF CRITICAL STUDIES AND CREATIVE WORK


From the Director Growing Up As I write this, our fifth graduating class

has just headed out into the wider world, an important milestone for both our newest

alumni and the entire Cinema Studies Pro-

gram. Although we often still feel like we’ve just begun, there are increasing signs that

Cinema Studies at the University of Oregon is growing up fast and strong.

Indications of our nascent maturity are

apparent across the program. Our students’ and graduates’ work is winning awards,

like Cinema Studies 2014 graduate Davis

Burns’s film “True Fighters,” which recently

received a Northwest Regional Emmy. Burns, along with recent School of Journalism and Communication (SOJC) alum Derek Brown,

produced a documentary that tells the compelling story of a local

community of boxers

prestigious Screen Studies Program, but he began his academic career in film studies

here at Oregon as an undergrad in my “History of Motion Pictures” course quite a few

years before Cinema Studies existed. This is probably more a sign of my own increasing

maturity than anything else, but it’s wonderful to see Peter make the trajectory from Oregon

student to Oregon professor. Newer to Oregon is Masami Kawai, a filmmaker from Los

Angeles who was with us this past year as a

Faculty Fellow and who is now joining us as a

career instructor. Masami is helping us expand

our offerings in digital filmmaking, which have grown in the last couple of years to include

“Award-winning students, excellent faculty, and supportive donors represent a growing program with an exciting future.”

more than a dozen differ-

ent production courses. I’m thrilled to

announce that another innovative course will be coming in 2016 as

dealing with the tragic death of one of their

part of the inaugural Harlan J. Strauss Visiting

Associate Professor Dan Miller. Dan’s class,

Rima Strauss, the Cinema Studies Program

best young fighters. The film began its life in

a SOJC production course taught by program in which SOJC and Cinema Studies students collaborated to produce award-winning

work like Davis and Derek’s film, is a perfect example of what we hoped would happen

when we first started the program: excellent faculty from across campus coming together to offer our majors a unique interdisciplinary blend of opportunities in film and media.

That first-rate faculty has grown consid-

erably with a number of new hires including Peter Alilunas and Daniel Steinhart, both

adding to our significant expertise in media industry studies. You’ll find out more about Daniel, our first Cinema Studies joint hire

with SOJC, in the faculty section of this maga-

zine. Peter received his PhD from Michigan’s

Professor and Filmmaker Fund in Cinema

Studies. Through the generosity of Harlan and will now be able to bring to campus annually

both successful veterans and newly emerging talents of the film industry who will closely interact with and teach our students. This major gift will offer our students a unique

and potentially transformative opportunity to engage with highly successful practicing

filmmakers as well as help raise the visibility of Cinema Studies on campus and around the country.

Award-winning students, excellent

faculty, and supportive donors represent a growing program with an exciting future. We hope you’ll join us. n

Michael Aronson Director of Cinema Studies Associate Professor of English


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CINEMA SCHOLAR SERIES

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KNIGHT LIBRARY COLLABORATION

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BUILDING CONNECTIONS

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FACULTY RESEARCH

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CREATING A CAREER IN CINEMA

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PORTLANDIA PARTNERSHIP


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Cinema Studies is designed as an integral blend of critical studies and creative work, and we think both are equally important to our students’ future success. Michael Aronson Director of Cinema Studies Associate Professor of English


Launched in the Fall of 2012, the Cinema Scholar Series has regularly invited distinguished scholars to the University of Oregon to present their research in cinema and media. The scholars have presented their research to standing-room-only audiences of faculty, undergraduates, and graduates. This year’s topics have addressed filmmaking across borders in the 1960s and 1970s, television history, and the cultural and political roles of film censorship.

CINEMA SCHOLAR STORY BY JANET WASKO

PHOTOS BY JOSHUA RAINEY

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he annual Cinema Scholar Series for the 2014–15 academic year included three public lectures featuring notable cinema and media studies scholars. The inaugural lecture of the series featured Kaveh Askari, Associate Professor of English at Western Washington University. Askari’s presentation, “Hollywood/Iran: Filmmaking Across Borders in the 1960s and 1970s,” was based on his experience in Tehran researching the Hollywood archives on mid-twentieth-century Iran. Along with his work on Hollywood’s presence in Iran, Askari’s Making Movies Art: Picture Craft from the Magic Lantern to Early Hollywood will be published soon by the British Film Institute. The winter lecture, “TV Snapshots: An Archive of Everyday Life,” was delivered by Lynn Spigel, the Frances E. Willard Professor of Screen Cultures at Northwestern University. Spigel is the author of several books on television, and she presented her ongoing research involving a collection of more than 5,000 family snapshots depicting people posing in front of their TV sets in the 1950s and ’60s. Spigel considers how snapshot cameras functioned as an “appendage

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Series

technology” for television when TV first arrived in U.S. homes: “Snapshots were a ‘thing to do’ with TV beyond TV’s more obvious function as a spectator medium.” Finally, Professor Daniel Biltereyst from Belgium asked students and faculty who packed into Gerlinger Lounge, “What can we learn from the history of film censorship?” Biltereyst is a professor in Film and Media Studies at Ghent University and has written extensively about film and screen culture as sites of controversy, public debate, and moral/media panic. His work on censorship spans the world and extends to current issues involving new media forms. He explained in his talk that today’s “media and communications seem at odds with the idea of censorship. However, in this so-called post-disciplinary society, there is a renewed interest in traditional models of censorship.” From filmmaking across borders to television history to film censorship, the diverse set of research topics presented in the Cinema Scholar Series enriched the students’ experience and expanded their knowledge and interest in the study of film and media. n


CINEMA SCHOLAR SERIES SPEAKERS

Kaveh Askari

Associate Professor of English Western Washington University

Lynn Spigel presents her talk, “TV Snapshots: An Archive of Everyday Life,” during the winter term 2015 Cinema Scholar Series event.

Lynn Spigel

Frances E. Willard Professor of Screen Cultures Northwestern University

Kaveh Askari (right) answers questions after his lecture, “Hollywood/Iran: Filmmaking Across Borders in the 1960s and 1970s.”

Daniel Biltereyst Faculty members listen intently to Daniel Biltereyst’s lecture on the history of film censorship.

Professor in Film and Media Studies, Department of Communication Studies Head of Department and Director, Centre for Cinema and Media Studies (CIMS) Ghent University, Belgium


Research FACULTY

The Cinema Studies Program is an interdisciplinary major with faculty from the College of Arts and Sciences, the School of Architecture and Allied Arts, and the School of Journalism and Communication. The curriculum includes courses taught from each college with faculty members who have a diverse range of research interests in film and media studies.

PRISCILLA PEÑA OVALLE

Priscilla Peña Ovalle joined the UO English Department in 2006 after earning her PhD at the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts. Ovalle’s research focuses on mainstream U.S. popular culture. By exploring the everyday images we take for granted, Ovalle finds complex stories about nation, race, and sexuality. Her first book, Dance and the Hollywood Latina: Race, Sex, and Stardom, was the result of a simple question: Why do Latinas on film and television always seem to be compulsive dancers? Research revealed that every Latina star in Hollywood—from Rita Hayworth in the 1940s to Jennifer Lopez in the 2000s—was discovered or known as a dancer. Since the silent era, Latinas have been expected to dance; this history tells the story of U.S.-Latin American relations and contemporary formations of race in popular culture. Ovalle is now working on the history of hair in mainstream media. Examining the production and depiction of specific hairstyles on U.S. television, Ovalle now asks why redheaded women like Lucille Ball, Carol Burnett, and Kimmy Schmidt seem to be extra zany—or why we only talk about the so-called excessive hairstyles of famous men like Elvis, The Beatles, 80s hair bands, or Justin Bieber. Ovalle was trained in film and new media production as well as critical media studies and is committed to teaching classes that intersect theory and practice. Whether teaching fundamental classes like “Media Aesthetics” and “History of Motion Pictures” or upperdivision classes like “Race, Sex, and Stardom,” Ovalle challenges students to build their critical thinking, production, and research skills as crucial aspects of humanities-oriented or filmmaking careers. As an Associate Professor and the Associate Director of the Cinema Studies Program, Ovalle is thrilled to work with a team of program faculty committed to developing unique learning opportunities for Cinema Studies students. n Photo by Joshua Rainey


ANDRÉ SIROIS

Photo by Joshua Rainey

In a young, fast-moving program like Cinema Studies, faculty and staff often wear more than one hat. No one better exemplifies this than Cinema Studies Career Instructor Dr. André Sirois, also known as “DJ food stamp” and “The Real Dr. dRé™.” As these monikers suggest, Sirois’s professional, creative, and research interests in media focus on the making of music. With a PhD in Communications from Oregon, Sirois’s research concentrates on the nature of technical and cultural innovation, specifically as they relate to DJ culture. His work on this subject, including a forthcoming book entitled Hip Hop DJs and the Evolution of Technology: Cultural Exchange, Innovation, and Democratization, addresses the relationship between DJ culture and the industries that serve it and focuses on the manipulation, exchange, and rights associated with intellectual properties. This interest in the intersection of creative work and intellectual property led to Cinema Studies’ newest course offering, “Remix Cultures,” which introduces students to the ways in which medias both visual and sonic are continually mixed and repurposed across time and space. Sirois has created several new classes for the program, ranging from the critical studies television course “South Park and Society” to digital production courses like “Sound for Screens” and “DSLR Filmmaking” to “Indie Film,” which collaborated with Cinema Studies screenwriting classes, the School of Music and Dance, the Dept. of Theatre Arts, LCC, and the Eugene community to create three student-produced short films. Whether it’s working with students to write papers or to make films, Sirois’s passion and enthusiasm for Cinema Studies is contagious. He has played an invaluable role in the growth and evolution of the program. n

DANIEL JANET STEINHART WASKO

Photo by Joshua Rainey

Joining Oregon faculty in 2014, Assistant Professor Daniel Steinhart represents the first joint hire between Cinema Studies and the School of Journalism and Communication (SOJC). In seeking a candidate to share with the program’s colleagues in SOJC, Cinema Studies hoped to find someone who could build on its existing strengths in both global cinema and the study of film as an industry. In Steinhart, Cinema Studies was lucky enough to find the perfect match. Steinhart received his PhD from UCLA and focuses his research and teaching on global Hollywood production, film form, and style as well as on contemporary international art cinema. His research investigates how Hollywood studios pushed across the world to create a globalized production industry from the late 1940s to the early 1960s. This work, which Steinhart is currently developing for his first book, also examines the artistic choices that arose when Hollywood filmmakers of the period confronted the various challenges of foreign location shooting. Steinhart’s work to understand Hollywood as an industry has been recognized by a number of prestigious grants, including a Fulbright Fellowship to do relevant studio research in France. Although his primary research is about Hollywood films made abroad over fifty years ago, Steinhart has a background in both film programming and film journalism. He brings to the program a true cinephile’s delight in a diverse set of much smaller films made all over the world and often only to be found in film festivals and art houses. It is this mix—a focus on filmmaking past and present and a passion for movies big and small—that makes Steinhart such a great addition to UO Cinema Studies. n

Photocourtesy by: Name Photo Janet Wasko

Although the University of Oregon’s Cinema Studies Program is only five years old, some of its best faculty have been researching, writing, and teaching about film and media for a whole lot longer. Janet Wasko, Professor and Knight Chair in Communication Research, arrived at the university in 1986 and has been an “impact scholar” in her field for decades, well before the first Cinema Studies major arrived on campus. A prolific author, editor, and co-editor of almost twenty books, including How Hollywood Works and the widely influential Understanding Disney, Wasko defines her work as political economics of the media, especially as related to the film industry. Her analytical approach challenges established assumptions and popular myths about the media while promoting democratic and egalitarian media activities by both media producers and consumers. For instance, her seminal research on all things Disney is intended to challenge various popular and institutional myths about Walt Disney and the Disney Company through historical and political economic analysis as well as by examining Disney’s products and audiences. One of the founders of the Cinema Studies Program, Wasko is the current president of the International Association for Media and Communication Research. A longtime standout in her field and a leader both on and off campus, Wasko is a crucial member of Oregon’s Cinema Studies Program and, perhaps even more importantly, an always generous mentor to both the students and junior faculty. n

CINEMA STUDIES | 9


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Helping students and faculty find information for their research projects is the most fun and interesting part of my job as the subject specialist librarian for Cinema Studies. Elizabeth Peterson Humanities Librarian and Curator of Moving Images


Collaboration

KNIGHT LIBRARY & CINEMA STUDIES

Elizabeth Peterson (right), the subject specialist librarian for Cinema Studies in the UO Libraries, discusses the UO Libraries’ long history of supporting the study of cinema on campus— from providing research assistance and instruction to establishing the first audio-visual department to housing the current program’s multimedia center and offices. Photo by Joshua Rainey

STORY BY ELIZABETH PETERSON


FACULTY NOTES A SELECTION OF RECENT PUBLICATIONS & EXHIBITS Peter Alilunas, Assistant Professor School of Journalism and Communication “Ephemerata: Ginger’s Private Party Flyer (circa 1985),” Film History (2014) Michael Bray, Career Instructor Department of Art “Sometimes You Get Nowhere,” The Grammer Center, Medford, Oregon (2015) Bellingham National 2015 Art Exhibition & Awards, Whatcom Museum, Bellingham, Washington (2015)

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The Knight Library serves as the multimedia hub for the Cinema Studies Program, housing the computer lab (pictured here), equipment room, and offices for the multimedia instructors. Photo by Studio Mcdermott

ow many female characters were out films, sound recordings, and playback in Hollywood films in 2014? What equipment for use in classrooms and New York movie theaters showed courses. Robert McCollough, a humanities Luis Buñuel’s Un Chien Andalou in 1929? librarian from 1950 to 1984, was a leader in How did Spike Lee finance his early movies? the University Film Society, a campus club Where can I find scholarly sources about established in 1956 to organize screenings unreliable narrators in film noir? How do I of world cinema, art house films, and docucite DVD liner notes in MLA style? mentaries. McCollough had the foresight to These are a sample of the kinds of research purchase library subscriptions to many questions I receive every week from Cinema important early film journals, such as Studies students and faculty. Helping people Cahiers du cinéma and Film Comment, as find information is a fun and interesting part well as the works of criticism that formed of my job as the subject specialist librarian the discipline of film studies in the 1960s for Cinema Studies. The Cinema Studies and ’70s. We continue to build on this core Program incorporates history, theory, collection with the resources that support production, and industry studies from a the diverse research and teaching needs global perspective, so of our Cinema Studies “My work with Cinema Studies faculty and students, I have to be ready to help students who are is part of a long history of including books, journals, working on a myriad other reference materials, library support for film and online databases, and priof topics navigate the universe of sources mary sources like DVDs. media studies at the for their research The UO Libraries’ University of Oregon.” projects. Research support for Cinema Studies assistance can quickly become research goes beyond this, too. In 2010, we collaboinstruction, and another big part of my job rated with the program to convert a former is to teach students how to do research on computer lab on the second floor of Knight their own. Every term I give instruction Library into the Cinema Studies Lab, which is sessions to Cinema Studies classes on how open to everyone at the university to use in to search for journal articles in databases, the afternoons and evenings. Right next to the find books in the library catalog, evaluate Lab, Cinema Studies staff had their first adscholarly and popular information, and cite ministrative offices, and several still remain sources appropriately. after the program expanded across campus. My work with Cinema Studies is part of On the ground floor of Knight Library is the a long history of library support for film and Cinema Studies Equipment Room, serendipimedia studies at the University of Oregon. In tously located in the same room as the legacy 1946, the Library established the first “audio16mm film collection, as if to symbolize the visual department” on campus. The A-V past and future of the UO Libraries’ long Department served as a centralized locacollaboration with Cinema Studies. n tion for instructors and students to check

Dong Hoon Kim, Assistant Professor Korean Literature, EALL “The Politics and Poetics of North Korean Juche Cinema,” Asian Cinema (2014) “Performing Colonial Identity: Byeonsa, Colonial Film Spectatorship, and the Formation of National Cinema in Colonial Korea,” Oxford Handbook of Japanese Cinema (2014) Katharina Loew, Assistant Professor Cinema Studies and German & Scandinavian “Magic Mirrors: The Schüfftan Process,” Special Effects: New Histories, Theories, Contexts (2015) “Lunar Longings and Rocket Fever: Rediscovering Frau im Mond,” A Companion to Fritz Lang (2015) “The Spirit of Technology: Early German Thinking about Film,” New German Critique 122 (2014) HyeRyoung Ok, Career Instructor School of Journalism and Communication “Mobile Phone Culture in Korea,” Encyclopedia of Mobile Phone Behavior (2014) Sergio Rigoletto, Assistant Professor Cinema Studies and Romance Languages Masculinity and Italian Cinema: Sexual Politics, Social Conflict and Male Crisis in the 1970s, Edinburgh University Press, Edinburgh (2014) “What Is Italian Screen Studies For?” The Italianist (2014) André Sirois, Career Instructor Cinema Studies “Scratching out authorship: The creative network of hip hop DJs,” Cultures of Copyright (2015) Daniel Steinhart, Assistant Professor Cinema Studies and SOJC “Dispatches from the Dark: A Conversation with Film Critic Neil Young at the 2015 International Film Festival Rotterdam.” NECSUS: European Journal of Media Studies (2015)


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1 Dublin, Ireland Study Abroad 2015

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12 No Budget Filmmaking Awards


Creating A CAREER IN CINEMA

STORY BY HANNAH OSBORN PHOTOS BY JOSHUA RAINEY

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anding a job in the film industry is a top priority for soon-tobe Cinema Studies graduates. Advisors, professors, and industry professionals alike suggest that networking is one of the best tools in the job search process. The Cinema Studies Program launched the Working Filmmakers Series in 2010, bringing industry professionals to campus to talk with students about what it takes to get a job, work in the industry, and build connections. The 2015 Working Filmmakers event, “Creating Your Career in Cinema,” featured a panel discussion and networking session with five industry professionals, including recent Cinema Studies alumni, from a variety of backgrounds—everything from directing and filmmaking to various roles in production. “Our goal was to bring together a panel of speakers who work in different areas of the industry so students could learn the many ways in which they can put their studies to work,” states Student Services Assistant Director Shauna Riedel-Bash. The standing-room-only crowd was captivated as the panel discussed their experiences finding jobs and working in the 16 | CINEMA STUDIES

The winter term 2015 Working Filmmakers Series featured a panel discussion of speakers (left to right): Melanie Bowman, BA ’13; Kate Schnabel, BA ’14; Alexi Pappas, MA ’14, Naomi Yospe, and Juliana Lukasik. Cinema Studies Career Instructor Masami Kawai (far right) moderated the event.

industry while offering networking suggestions for students preparing to enter the job market. “The best advice I could offer a current Cinema Studies student is to network and figure out what you want, and don’t be afraid to ask for it because people respond to that,” panel speaker Melanie Bowman said. Bowman, who graduated from Cinema Studies in 2013, took her own advice. She landed a position as the lead producer for Sawhorse Productions by conducting informational interviews in Los Angeles during spring break of her senior year and began producing a wide range of digital content for Condé Nast Entertainment—Teen Vogue, Glamour, Vanity Fair, GQ, and Golf Digest. Kate Schnabel, Cinema Studies alum from the class of 2014, provided students with insight into how she obtained a coveted position as a production assistant for the television show Portlandia. Schnabel first enrolled in the “Cinema Careers” course. Skills learned in the class helped her land a summer internship with the show after her sophomore year, and she subsequently was hired back as the line producer’s assistant while still in school. “Get started as soon as possible,” Schnabel advised students. “Graduating with three seasons of a show under my belt has made the transition to the real world a lot easier for me. I graduated with an abundance of connections, and I wasn’t worried to enter the production field.” Both Bowman and Schnabel enrolled in the “Cinema Careers” course when they were students and then returned to the class as alumni to share their experiences working in the industry. “The ‘Cinema Careers’ course is designed to help students synthesize their college experiences and communicate their skills to prospective employers. Meeting with recent Cinema Studies alumni and hearing advice about how to get started in the industry is incredibly valuable to current students,” remarked Riedel-Bash, instructor of the course.


“Become indispensable. It’s like Survivor—be the person who no one will ever want to vote off the island.” Juliana Lukasik Creative Director Cappelli Miles The Working Filmmakers panel included Juliana Lukasik, creative director at Cappelli Miles, who has been a valuable partner of the Cinema Studies Program, serving as a mentor to students and providing job shadow opportunities to Cinema Studies majors. She had excellent advice for students hoping to get hired after landing an internship or temporary entry-level position: “Become indispensable. It’s like Survivor—be the person who no one will ever want to vote off the island.” As for surviving in the fast-paced film industry, recent UO graduates shared words of encouragement. Schnabel reminded students that the profession was not necessarily glamorous, lucrative, or filled with days of meeting famous people. Rather, the profession requires hard work and dedication: “You have to be willing to put in the work to get what you want out of it.” Alexi Pappas, who received her MA from the University of Oregon in 2014 in Interdisciplinary Studies with a focus on film, directed and starred in the upcoming movie Tracktown. Pappas likened her work in independent filmmaking to running. She stressed the importance of “staying on your own team” during the hard times because nobody will ever believe in your project as much as you do. Naomi Yospe, freelance film and television production coordinator, offered advice that all students should take to heart as they enter their postgraduate careers: “Just open up as many avenues as you can, and keep them open.” The panel also discussed the topic of gender challenges faced in the film industry. Cinema Studies Career Instructor Masami Kawai, who moderated the event, offers advice on this topic, “I would encourage students to learn from the richness of global cinema history and to create new work that the film industry can’t ignore. I would also encourage UO students to continue to value voices that are often overlooked and underrepresented. Valuing diversity will be an asset

Event Photo: Student and speaker networking.

Juliana Lukasik, creative director at Cappelli Miles, answers questions during the Working Filmmakers Series networking session.

to their futures in an increasingly more international film market as well as an asset to create a richer film culture and a dynamic work environment.” Through a combination of critical studies, creative work, speaker events, and networking opportunities, Cinema Studies provides students with the skills necessary to create a career in cinema. “We are excited to help students find their passion and look forward to bringing more speakers to campus to enrich the students’ overall experience,” remarked Riedel-Bash. n

Students, faculty, and community members engage in a Q&A session with the speaker panel.


Fostering alumni connections goes beyond networking. It’s about creating possibilities for relationships, mentoring, and—most importantly—artistic collaboration. You never know who your greatest collaborators will be, but it all starts with reaching out. Greg Snyder, BA ’92 Film Editor Pixar Animation Studios


Building CONNECTIONS STORY BY HANNAH OSBORN

University of Oregon alumni, along with Cinema Studies faculty, guest speakers, and Cinema Studies Digital Network members, are valuable resources for students and recent graduates looking to build their professional connections.

Cinema Studies graduate Maura Turner (left) landed a job with Pixar, joining university alumni Greg Snyder (middle) and CJ Hsu (right). Photo courtesy Pixar Animation Studios


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s any job seeker will learn, a profesmany talks and workshops as you can to make sional network is one of the most connections with the guest speakers. The valuable tools in the search process. [Cinema Careers] prep class is an amazing tool Given that the majority of today’s jobs are obto help you create your professional presence tained through networking, the best method and network with industry professionals. Do for students when preparing for success after as many informational interviews as you can, graduation is to establish their professional apply for all sorts of internships, and always network while still in school. In Cinema Studies, write thank-you letters!” that starts with the talented pool of UO alumni. Jackie Penn, BA ’14, is another Cinema Maura Turner, BA ’14, learned firsthand Studies graduate who landed her dream job by just how valuable networking could be when building connections. Penn always envisioned she met Greg Snyder, BA ’92 and Pixar Animaherself working abroad. Through her expetion Studios Film Editor, at a Cinema Studies rience in the Cinema Studies summer study Working Filmmakers presentation during her abroad program in Ireland, she was able to freshman year at the University of Oregon. establish a professional network and secure an In fact, Snyder’s talk internship at Ripple “The [Cinema Careers] prep World Pictures in was the reason she became a Cinema class is an amazing tool to help Dublin. “I made it my Studies major: “Greg’s goal while in Ireland to you create your professional meet as many people talk was the first thing I ever did with the Cinpresence and network with as possible and build ema Studies Program. connections with the industry professionals.” I was in awe of Greg’s people I worked with,” work, and I wanted to Maura Turner, BA ’14 Penn says. “Even if I do what he did.” Pixar Animation Studios was nervous about Turner, who had long dreamed of talking to someone, working at Pixar, kept in contact with Snyder I would just tell myself that if I didn’t talk to during the months leading up to her graduthem it could easily be an opportunity lost.” ation. After surviving an extensive interview She now spends her days reading scripts, brainprocess, she landed a position with Pixar. She storming, and conducting research for a new started as an intern on the production desk Irish television series. Penn advises students working with Snyder on a forthcoming Pixar to use their connections to get in touch with project and is now a production assistant on people at companies where they would like that same project. “I dream[ed] of working to work. at Pixar before I understood what that even The stories of these recent Cinema meant,” Turner says. “Pixar’s capacity to Studies graduates demonstrate that building appeal to children and adults and evoke emoprofessional connections through alumni, tional and thoughtful messages is amazing faculty, guest speakers, and classes is a matter to me. To get to be a part of it is a dream come of taking initiative and not being afraid to put true.” Turner’s advice to students looking to yourself out there and that networking leads have the same postgrad success? “Go to as to great opportunities. n While participating in the Cinema Studies study abroad program in 2014, Jackie Penn networked to land an internship on a new Irish television series. Photo courtesy Jackie Penn

Creating Connections on the Digital Network While in-person networking is certainly the best way to foster relationships, online social networking can also play a major role for soonto-be graduates in their job searches. Launched in January 2015, the UO Cinema Studies Digital Network is a selective Facebook group that allows qualified students, program alumni, and potential employers to build lasting connections and develop career opportunities. “It’s exciting to be able to provide this new platform that allows virtual networking to benefit all of our UO Cinema Studies family and friends,” says Student Services Assistant Director Shauna Riedel-Bash who created the group. “I want students to be able to seek advice from alumni and industry professionals quickly and also have a place to share news and success stories, and the Digital Network is providing this. It has also become a valuable recruiting tool for our industry partners that provides them with direct access to our talented students and alumni and offers a place to view recent job and internship openings.” When recent UO Cinema Studies graduate Alyssa Rasmus, BA ’14, heard that her friend was looking for applicants to fill BBC America’s summer internship program, she immediately thought of sharing it on the Digital Network. “The internship was one I would have loved to have gotten when I was in school, so I knew it was a great opportunity,” Rasmus says. Sure enough, Cinema Studies major Shelby McIntyre saw the post, reached out to Rasmus, and applied. According to Rasmus, “I knew anyone I heard back from would be a good option for the internship because the Cinema Studies Program only produces the best, most professional people. Whoever was driven and ambitious enough to connect with [me] personally would do well at the company and in the industry.” McIntyre got the summer internship at BBC in scripted show development and now recommends the Digital Network to other students: “My advice is to read everything that is posted since you never know when a fantastic opportunity will come about. The Digital Network is a phenomenal tool to connect students, alumni, and employers, so be sure to make the most of it!” “This industry is all about networking and connecting with people,” says Rasmus. “The bigger the network you build, during school and after, the more opportunities you’ll have—including those you may have not considered before.” Find out how to join the Digital Network by visiting the “Digital Network” section under “Alumni and Friends” on the Cinema Studies website at cinema.uoregon.edu.


My advice to students is to take advantage of all that Cinema Studies offers. The courses, internships, and talks with scholars and industry professionals are incredibly helpful. Put yourself out there— you never know what could happen next. Samantha Stendal, BA ’15 Peabody Award Winner 2013


Student Spotlight

BAHAREH KHOSRAVI

CINEMA STUDIES PARTNERSHIP WITH

PORTLANDIA “We put a bird on it. Now it’s art.” STORY AND PHOTO BY SHAUNA RIEDEL-BASH

Photo by Joshua Rainey

STORY BY HANNAH OSBORN For Bahareh Khosravi, cinema is the medium of storytelling best able to transform the world into an ideal vision. “I believe for me [the best way] to communicate with the world [is] through an audiovisual medium,” says Khosravi, who moved to Eugene from Iran and who has been “in love with the Northwest ever since I saw Twin Peaks.” Khosravi, a second-year postbaccalaureate student, previously studied architecture at the University of Tehran. Although she loved the way architecture turned an abstract idea into a tangible structure, she couldn’t shake the feeling that she was meant to be involved in an audiovisual medium of storytelling: “The U of O’s Cinema Studies Program seemed like a perfect interdisciplinary program that someone from a different background would benefit from. I needed to understand deeply the different nuances and levels of filmmaking from industry practices to tech to formal structure.” Now Khosravi is about to finish her studies at the University of Oregon as one of the top students in the Cinema Studies Program. She says her academic success can be attributed to her deep love for the subject. “I think that anything that’s conducive to your goals in life is going to cling to your mind,” Khosravi says. “You shouldn’t have to memorize what you learn; you’re supposed to live it and ponder it outside the classroom, as cliché as that sounds.” In the future, Khosravi hopes to put her studies to work: “I revere independent productions, new media technologies, and video gaming as powerful [media] that transcend the mainstream. My goal is to get involved with these kinds of creations to offer alternative ways of experiencing and communicating through media.” n

Portlandia has launched the careers of multiple students from the UO Cinema Studies Program over the past four years.

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ortlandia, in case you haven’t seen it, is a Peabody, WGA, and Emmy award-winning sketch-comedy series that is set and filmed in Portland, Oregon, starring Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein. If 14 Emmy nominations aren’t enough, the production has also distinguished itself as a premier example of giving back to education, building and ensuring the future success of filmmakers in Oregon. Dedicated local producers Kevin Sullivan and David Cress lead the charge in this effort for Sidestreet Entertainment Inc., Lorne Michaels’s production company that produces Portlandia. Over the past four years, the UO Cinema Studies Program has fostered a close relationship with the production. Producers and crew from Portlandia have given their time to share with students what it’s like to work in the industry by speaking at the Cinema Studies Working Filmmakers Series, teaching small workshops, and speaking to students in a variety of classes. “It is important to help develop the next generation of filmmakers,” states producer Kevin Sullivan. “Giving students an opportunity to see how a TV show operates from the ground up is an invaluable insight into understanding production. Some of our past interns have gone on to be industry leaders in Oregon and elsewhere.” Additionally, many Cinema Studies students obtained their first professional opportunities through the production. So far, more than twenty Cinema Studies students participated in internships on Portlandia, and many now work in the Oregon film industry. “Interning on Portlandia has opened so many doors into the film industry; learning industry structure on set is something that can’t be taught in any book,” says Kendall McClintock, Cinema Studies student intern. Portlandia recently wrapped its sixth season of filming, which included six student interns and multiple alumni working on the production. “UO Cinema Studies continues to provide a team of extremely sharp, motivated, aspiring filmmakers who dive into our unique world of production with boundless energy and enthusiasm. I am once again grateful to Shauna [Riedel-Bash] and the participating students for another amazing season,” says Steve Weisman, production supervisor, Portlandia Season 6. There is no doubt about the contribution Portlandia is making to the industry in Oregon. “It’s clear producers Kevin and David are committed to not only producing a fantastic show but also to teaching the next generation of up-andcoming filmmakers,” states Shauna Riedel-Bash, who directs internships for the Cinema Studies Program. “Most sets are run like a family, and this family in particular encourages students to jump in and participate, ask questions, and really hone in on their interests and develop new talents,” states Riedel-Bash. “One


Student Spotlight

BRANDON RAINS

Photo by Joshua Rainey

Photo by Joshua Rainey

STORY BY HANNAH OSBORN Brandon Rains is completing a dual degree in Fine Arts and Cinema Studies at the University of Oregon. He originally came to the UO for the Digital Arts program but soon added the Cinema Studies major as well to aid him in his dream of pursuing a career as an animator. “It seemed incredibly beneficial for me to be able to critically analyze [what] I will be creating,” Rains says. Cinema Studies student interns Laura Brehm and Jordyn Roach enjoy a brief moment on set with Portlandia creator and co-star Fred Armisen.

“It is important to help develop the next generation of filmmakers. Giving students an opportunity to see how a TV show operates from the ground up is an invaluable insight into understanding production. Some of our past interns have gone on to be industry leaders in Oregon and elsewhere.” Kevin Sullivan Producer Portlandia great example happened this past summer: Fred Armisen reached out to our interns and made sure they knew even he was willing to answer their questions during breaks. It’s not often students have such incredible access to learn at every level in a live production, and we’re thrilled to partner with Portlandia to bring this opportunity to students.” Don’t forget to support the Cinema Studies students and alumni and watch Portlandia Season 6. n

Rains uses the knowledge he gains from each major to enhance the other. In his Cinema Studies classes, he learns the process of filmmaking and the theories associated with media and the industry. In his Fine Arts classes, he is able fully to immerse himself in the production of animations and the creative side of filmmaking. Rains notes that he would add even more majors to his repertoire if he could: “I do not think success can come from limiting [one’s] field of study.” Rains’s work was recognized at the University of Oregon’s Fifth Annual Undergraduate Symposium, which each year celebrates both the remarkable contributions undergraduates make to research and their other creative work. Under the mentorship of Associate Professor Priscilla Peña Ovalle, Cinema Studies Associate Director, Rains presented his research poster “Mickey Mouse and the Creation of an Animated Star.” Rains analyzed the design, personality, and actions of Mickey Mouse in short films from the 1930s and deconstructed the animation process by redrawing the character himself, blending the critical thinking and technical animation production skills he obtained through his dual degree. n CINEMA STUDIES | 25


Connect with Cinema Studies Office 6223 University of Oregon 201 McKenzie Hall Eugene, OR 97403-6223 Email: cinema@uoregon.edu 541-346-8104 (T) 541-346-8144 (F)

The Harlan J. Strauss Visiting Professor and Filmmaker Fund Comes to Cinema Studies

Multimedia Center 267 Knight Library 541-346-8172 Equipment Room 18 Knight Library 541-346-7820 Digital Network Facebook.com/groups/UOCinemaDigitalNetwork Website cinema.uoregon.edu Social Media facebook.com/UOCinema twitter.com/UOCinema instagram.com/uocinema Email: UOCinemaSocial@uoregon.edu Online Magazine blogs.uoregon.edu/cinemamagazine2015

On the Cover: Cinema Studies graduates and Career Instructor and Multimedia Supervisor Dr. André Sirois celebrate after Cinema Studies Commencement 2015.

Photo by Joshua Rainey

Rima and Harlan Strauss

In 2015, the young Cinema Studies Program celebrated its first major endowment, the Harlan J. Strauss Visiting Professor and Filmmaker Fund in Cinema Studies. Harlan (PhD ’74, Political Science) and his wife, Rima, decided to make Cinema Studies the recipient of a generous gift that will bring filmmakers to campus annually, both successful industry veterans and emerging talents, to interact closely with our students. The fund will provide the resources for a filmmaker to engage each year in a two-week

university residency, during which the filmmaker will be involved in a variety of campus activities including teaching workshops, mentoring students, screening films, and participating in public conversations. “This wonderful gift will provide life-changing opportunities for our students to spend quality time with the best and the brightest from across the industry. Harlan and Rima truly understand how important experiences like this are for students who want to pursue a career in film,” says Associate Professor Michael Aronson, Cinema Studies program director. The Strausses wanted their gift to make an immediate impact, and the program expects to bring its first visiting filmmaker to campus in Spring 2016. Cinema Studies extends its heartfelt thanks to Harlan and Rima for allowing Oregon students this unique and potentially transformative opportunity to engage with highly successful practicing filmmakers as well as helping to raise the visibility of the Cinema Studies Program on campus and around the country. n

Supporting Cinema Studies

Your support of Cinema Studies at the University of Oregon has allowed the program to experience outstanding growth since launching with just 58 students in 2010. Today, the program serves more than 300 majors, providing our students with the richness of a liberal arts education that intertwines cinema history and theory with practical state–of–the–art production skills—your donations of time and resources helped make this possible. A gift to Cinema Studies, whether large or small, has the ability to touch every one of our students. We appreciate your interest and support. For more information on how you can support the UO’s Cinema Studies Program, please contact Mary Ann Ayson, Director of Development, at ayson@uoregon.edu or 541-346-3903. n

Back Cover: Students walk the red carpet before the No Budget Filmmaking Awards. The event was held spring term 2015 and featured a screening of three student-produced short films. Photo by Joshua Rainey

Opportunities to Support Cinema Studies

An equal-opportunity, affirmative-action institution committed to cultural diversity and compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. This publication will be made available in accessible formats upon request. Accommodations for people with disabilities will be provided if requested in advance by calling 541-346-8104 or emailing the department at cinema@uoregon.edu. ©2015 University of Oregon DES1012-153e

Student Scholarships: Scholarships help enable students with a passion for cinema to pursue their degree at the University of Oregon.

Speaker Series: Cinema Studies hosts professionals, scholars, and artists from media-related industries as speakers in large campus-wide events as well as small class workshops that enrich the program and the student experience.

Equipment and Technology: To prepare students for careers in media-related industries, the program must maintain cutting-edge equipment, software, and technology. Endowed Faculty Support: Ongoing support provides faculty with resources for developing and sustaining a strong curriculum with continuing education and research.


Cinema Studies Magazine Contributors Cinema Studies Director Michael Aronson Associate Professor of English Cinema Studies Associate Director Priscilla Peña Ovalle Associate Professor of English

The Cinema Studies Student Production Team brings together student videographers and Cinema Studies staff to film and edit interviews, event coverage, and promotional videos for the Cinema Studies Program. Front Row (Left to Right): Dr. André Sirois, Career Instructor and Multimedia Supervisor, Claire Chong, Jenna Townsend; Middle Row: Monica De Leon, Nicolas Walcott; Back Row: Alex Paiz, Claire Haines, Kevin May, Avid Certified Instructor and Multimedia Assistant. Photo by Joshua Rainey

Photo courtesy University Archives Photographic Collection

Elizabeth Peterson Humanities Librarian and Curator of Moving Images

Janet Wasko Professor of School of Journalism and Communication If you wish to make a contribution now, please make your check payable to the University of Oregon Foundation, designated for the Cinema Studies Program, and send it directly to the University of Oregon Foundation, 1720 East 13th Avenue, Suite 410, Eugene, OR 97403-2253, or donate online through the UO Foundation at: uofoundation.org. Thank you! n

A New Original Score for Ed’s Coed

A publicity photo from UO’s first student film Ed’s Coed.

Audra Mahoney Cinema Studies Office Manager

Shauna Riedel-Bash Student Services Assistant Director Cinema Studies Career Instructor

Annual Giving Reminder If you are contacted by UO Annual Giving and decide to make a contribution to the university, consider designating the Cinema Studies Program as a recipient. Such gifts make a difference in what the program can do to enhance educational opportunities for our students and provide valuable resources for our faculty.

Contributors Kay Bailey Cinema Studies Office Coordinator

In 1929, the first feature-length motion picture made by college students, Ed’s Coed, was filmed on the UO campus. Using a 35mm camera rented from Hollywood, UO undergraduate Carvel Nelson made the film with a cast and crew of fellow students. The Cinema Studies Program collaborated with the School of Music and Dance and the Knight Library to pair the film with an original score composed and arranged by University of Oregon Associate Professor of Trumpet Brian McWhorter. The new score was performed live by the group Beta Collide during a screening of the film in the fall of 2012 on the UO campus that was attended by more than 500 students, faculty, and community members. The music and film are available on the Knight Library website (library.uoregon.edu) and on a new DVD for the enjoyment of the university community. n

Production Manager Michelle Wright Proofreader Bill Fogarty Photography Joshua Rainey joshuaraineyphotography.com

Student Contributors Design and Production Yolanda Saetern Writing Hannah Osborn Website and Social Media Megan Parrish Coordination Maddie Dunkelberg Emily Feicht Karissa Hall Zach Silva Kaitlynn Tallman


No Budget Filmmaking Awards

Cinema Studies is an interdisciplinary major with courses from the College of Arts and Sciences, the School of Architecture and Allied Arts, and the School of Journalism and Communication. For more information, contact Shauna Riedel-Bash at cineadvising@uoregon.edu, or visit us in 201 McKenzie Hall.

Cinema Studies Magazine 2015  

A publication of the University of Oregon Cinema Studies Program.

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