GM Theatre inside C.H. Wright Museum to host 2011 Green Screen Youth Film Festival

October 22, 2011

EMEAC Associate Director Lottie Spady, second from right,
stands with (from left), Leah Spady, Sabrin Salaam and
Maria Ryen outside the Charles H. Wright Museum
of African American History
DETROIT – The General Motors Theatre inside the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History will serve as the venue for the fifth annual Green Screen Youth Film Festival sponsored by the East Michigan Environmental Action Council on November 17 in Detroit. Green Screen 2011 is scheduled to get underway at 7 p.m. and will be preceded at for 4 p.m. by a special Green Room youth gathering for Green Screen filmmakers, actors and participants along with young people from the 12 organizations of the Detroit Future Youth Network inside the nearby Plymouth United Church of Christ.

“We really wanted this year to mark the fifth anniversary of Green Screen with a gala event at a location that really reflected our commitment to Detroit and its history,” said EMEAC Associate Director Lottie Spady. “The young people have always got really excited to see their name up on the marquee. I think they’ll be even more excited to know that their work is going to be featured at the GM Theatre. We think we have a venue that’s fitting of the event.”

Green Screen provides a forum where students from across southeast Michigan and beyond showcase short films with environmental themes. These films allow young filmmakers to express what they think is most crucial to their health and to the natural environment. Some films also focus on making the world, their school or neighborhood environmentally healthier.

November 1 is the entry deadline for Green Screen 2011, which celebrates youth voices and emerging environmentalism.  The three-to-five-minute short films, created entirely by young artists and aspiring young activists, span a range of environmental and social issues. 

The films are judged for cinematic merit, relevance to Southeastern Michigan, and creative messaging.  The panel of judges will consist of independent directors, environmental activists, youth activists, and a journalist.  Now in its fifth year, EMEAC gets statewide inquiries about this exciting event, as well as requests for film making workshops and demonstrations through out the year.

“This is also the fifth year for the Green Screen and it’s exciting that it has lasted for five years,” Spady said. “It’s special that it is still well received and it is looked forward to. It keeps growing in number and in size with the amount of media entries with the scope of topics that are covered. That was of the atmosphere and vibe that the event is to us. It’s all about the young people that are in it as part of the community.”

Until this year, Green Screen had been held each year at the Main Arts Theater in Royal Oak. Organizers expressed gratitude for the hospitality and support received at the former venue and thanked them for helping to build Green Screen into a sustainable community event.

“We really were happy and appreciative of them having us host the event there for the last four years,” Spady said. “With EMEAC’s focus on the work in South East Michigan and in particular Detroit with Detroit’s environmental justice issues, we really felt that it was time for the venue for this event to reflect that commitment to Detroit.”

Those sentiments were naturally extended to the young film makers and environmental activists themselves. In cooperation with the Detroit Future Youth Network, the special pre-event green room activities will be put together to provide youth with a forum to learn about and discuss environmental issues concerning them and dialogue with each other.

“In the past, we have always had some hour durves where all the young people, their parents and their teachers would all have something to eat, then go in and see the films,” Spady said. “But, they really didn’t have a chance to interact with one another.
“Through our partnership and work with the Detroit Future Youth Network, each month the organizations in the network get to get together and exchange ideas and express what’s special about their organization. They also talk about ways to collaborate, so we decided to tie that monthly event to the front end of Green Screen so that they would have a chance to see all of the people who were involved in the media making.”

Anyone interested entering a film for Green Screen 2011, sponsoring a film, volunteering or making a donation of support should call 313 559-7498 or visit Guidelines for Green Screen are as follows.
  1. Films may be up to 5 minutes in length.
  2. Film must be about an environmental issue facing your community, city or county.
  3. Topics may include but not limited to;
    1. Environmental health
    2. Alternative energy
    3. School bus emissions
    4. Urban sprawl
    5. Brownfields
    6. Recycling
    7. Climate change
    8. Stream and wetland protection
    9. Trash/ recycling
  4. Film must be suitable and appropriate for an audience of all ages. Films that promote violence will not be accepted.
  5. There are no restrictions on the art form of your film. Films may be live action, animation, claymation, still photography or any combination.
  6. Entry must be in Mini DV or Quick Time movie file on a DVD (other formats or VHS may be accepted but you need to call the EMEAC office in advanced and submit project 2 weeks before deadline).
  7. Entry must be labeled with film, title, filmmaker's name, e-mail and phone number.
  8. Participants must fill out and return an application form.