Thu, Feb 16th, 2012 12:00 am

Teens show their movies at the Wildey

They'll be hitting the red carpet this weekend at the Wildey Theatre donning bow ties and evening gowns for a movie awards show.

But the awards won't be Oscars — they'll be Eddies. It's the first-ever Teen Film Fest, a new event created by the teen advisory board of the Edwardsville Public Library.

"We wanted to let teens know that the Edwardsville Public Library is really a fun place to go," said teen advisory board president Eden Vitoff, 14, a Liberty Middle School eighth-grader. "Since a lot of my friends are really interested in movie-making, the board voted to have a teen film fest. We hope this will attract some more teens to the library."

Teens in sixth to 12th grades had the opportunity to enter films up to 10 minutes long. Youth Services Librarian Anne Wolfe said six films were submitted this year. The films will be shown at the festival and audience members will have an opportunity to vote for their favorite movie for the Audience Choice Award. The films have already been judged by a six-member panel for awards in categories including Best Picture, Best Actor and Actress, Best Director and even Best Cinematography.

Wolfe said the six films show diverse interests. One group submitted a movie about what happens to characters in fairy tales after the story is over, another group entered a film about ghosts and another entry takes viewers on a tour around Edwardsville.

"One of them really used school resources — they used their school's tech clubs to help with editing — while for most of the kids, it was very independent," Wolfe said. "They were all really creative."

Eden said he and his friends submitted a silent movie about middle school students and their daydreams. Their submission was a collaboration between students at both Liberty and Lincoln middle schools. Eden served as co-director, editor and actor for the movie.

"There are four scenes in all and the daydreaming sequences were filmed in black-and-white and sped up a little to give it a 'Chaplin-esque' quality," Eden said. "I think the finished product looks really good."

Wolfe said the volunteer committee that organized the event has made an effort to recreate an Academy Awards-like atmosphere. The young filmmakers and their guests plan to dress in formal attire and literally walk the red carpet to the entrance of the Wildey. There will be even be acceptance speeches, paparazzi and giveaways.

Eden said he's looking forward to dressing up and showing off his film on the silver screen.

"I'm thinking of wearing a suit and bow tie," he said. "We also have a very fancy ride to the event — a Hummer limousine courtesy of the Middle School Prevention Program from which we borrowed filming supplies. The event is going to be a lot of fun."

Contact reporter Ramona C. Sanders at 618-344-0264, ext. 136

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