UWM filmmakers selected for Cannes Film Festival

Last updated on July 2nd, 2019 at 09:52 am

Six films from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee have been selected to screen at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival in France this spring. This is the first time in the program’s history that films have been selected for Cannes. 
“It’s definitely a first and it’s a really big deal for us,” said Rob Yeo, chair of the film department at UWM and producer of one of the selected films. “We’ve never had anybody in Cannes, let alone six entries.”
According to Yeo, UW-Milwaukee submitted eight entries for the festival.
“Originally we thought we’d be doing well if we got one in,” Yeo said, “when the number finally settled at six we were absolutely thrilled.”
Films selected included The Haunting of Wayne, a 30-minute character study of a man living his last days with Huntington’s disease by Matthew Newman, graduate of the Peck School of the Arts Film program; Walking Peace, a 3-minute film about the complexities of daily existence and the need for balance in life by Ericka Frederick, current graduate student of the film program; Calle 27 No. 1016, a 3-minute display of camerawork and editing that depicts a memory turned over and over in the mind’s eye by Josh Weissbach, current graduate student;  Mary’s Friend, a 4-minute animated film about a lonely girl and her friend by John Roberts, a graduate of the Peck School of the Arts Film program; Anima Mundi, a film composed of thousands of digital images of wild and cultivated flowers by Kate Balsley, faculty member at UW-Milwaukee; and Of a Feather, an 11-minute portrait of life filmed over the course of a year in Wisconsin’s Horicon Marsh by Yeo. All the films have been accepted into the Cannes Short Film Corner which will be held May 11 through May 22 in Cannes, France.
.Several of the entry winners will travel to France to network and mingle with European filmmakers, Yeo said.
“We’ve made a DVD of all six films, and our intent is to go to France and not only celebrate the accomplishment, but also talk to European film makers and producers and let them know what is going on here in Milwaukee,” Yeo said. “Having this many films selected is really an indication of the quality of work being done here.”
Ultimately, Yeo hopes appearing at Cannes will open additional opportunities for UW-Milwaukee film makers as far as other festivals and screenings, he said.
“Internally it’s been a big lift for us,” Yeo said. “People internally take a lot of pleasure in the success of entities they know are very good. We’ve had so many fine students over the years and everyone, former students, current students and recruits have responded very favorably to the news.”
After the festival, the UW-Milwaukee Film department will make the DVD of the six films available to the public, Yeo said.


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