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Mercersburg Academy students launch film festival

Mercersburg Academy students launch film festival

MERCERSBURG, Pa. — Maddie Kennedy hopes those leaving the first Mercersburg Film Festival on Saturday do so with new perspectives and viewpoints.

“I think a lot of the films we chose are thought-provoking,” said Kennedy, who organized the event with fellow teenager Casey Nguyen.

The two students at Mercersburg Academy thought they might want to develop a school event related to films and filmmaking, then realized they would rather make it a community-wide initiative. They approached filmmaker Drew Broadhurst and a partnership soon developed with Star Theatre.

“We thought it’d be a great location because of its history and it’s a beautiful theater,” Kennedy said.

Thus started the search for content to show in the festival, which netted 13 films, some of which originated in far-flung locales like Spain, Germany, and France. Others are local.

Admission to Saturday’s film festival is $5. The content being shown is appropriate for ages 13 and older.

“I think everybody could come and watch and take away the message we’re trying to present,” Kennedy said.

That message focuses on how anyone can tell what she called “an awesome story” without fancy equipment. She wants people to find creativity and confidence within themselves.

Kennedy, who hails from the Bahamas, started making short movies at age 8 when she experimented with stop motion. It is now her desire to study filmmaking in college. Nguyen, of Vietnam, also started making movies at a young age and now creates video blogs among his work.

Top photo: Mercersburg Academy students Maddie Kennedy, left, and Casey Nguyen have organized the first Mercersburg Film Festival which will take place on Saturday, Feb. 16. (Submitted photo)

If you go ...

WHAT: Mercersburg Film Festival
WHEN: 7:30 p.m. Saturday (doors open at 7 p.m.)
WHERE: Star Theatre, 23 W. Seminary St., Mercersburg, Pa.
COST: Tickets can be purchased at the box office. They are $5 each.

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