Marlboro College

NewsStudent’s Film is Selected for Prestigious Taos TalkingPictures Festival

MARLBORO, VT – A film edited and directed by Marlboro College senior Carrie Sterr was selected to be featured at the 2001 Taos Talking Pictures Festival in New Mexico.

Called "Losing Sleep," the film is an experimental documentary about young homeless women in Vermont. It was produced last summer under the supervision of award-winning film director and Marlboro film professor Jay Craven. According to Sterr, "The film is a series of interviews cut together in such a way to demonstrate the similarities and differences in the lives of nine women. The editing process creates a single, contradictory narrative out of all their different voices."

The interviews were filmed by teenagers who participated with Sterr in Craven’s Fledgling Films Institute, a program that teams up college students with Vermont and New Hampshire youth for screenwriting, acting, and production workshops.

Showcasing the best in independent cinema from around the world, the Taos Talking Picture Festival was recently rated among the 10 best film festivals in the world by the "Ultimate Film Festival Survival Guide." Attendance has grown from 1,000 people at the initial festival in 1995 to 10,000 in 1999. This year’s festival, slated for April 5-8, will include 120 films and videos from more than 20 countries, including dozens of world and U.S. premieres.

"Losing Sleep" is currently being shown in Brattleboro as part of the Women’s Film Festival at the Hooker-Dunham Theater on Main Street. It was also featured in the Director’s Cut series at the Coolidge Theater in Boston in December. The Coolidge Theater is a small cinema devoted to showing "art" films in a historic Art-Deco theater.

A native of Illinois but more recently hailing from Portland, Oregon, Sterr is trying to learn all she can from Craven, and is slated to spend a year working for his Vermont film company, Kingdom County Productions, after graduation. Then she plans to set off on her own.

This year, she is completing her "Plan of Concentration," Marlboro’s version of the undergraduate major, but which is more like a master’s thesis. Sterr’s "Plan" -- which combines film/video studies with American studies -- involves writing two screenplays, editing several films, writing an extensive research paper, and directing a three-minute black-and-white silent film, shot on Super8 film versus video.

Craven’s film credits include producing and directing several independent films, including "Where The Rivers Flow North," with Rip Torn, Tantoo Cardinal, Treat Williams and Michael J. Fox, in 1994, and "A Stranger in the Kingdom" in 1998, with Ernie Hudson, Martin Sheen, David Lansbury, Carrie Snodgrass and Bill Raymond. He's currently in pre-production on "Disappearances," which will star Kris Kristofferson. He has served as a faculty member at Marlboro since 1998.

A copy of Sterr's film is available by calling Kingdom County Productions at (802) 592-3190.

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