Get your movie on the big screen

Entry deadline June 10 for Surrey Film Festival.

The Surrey Film Festival is fast-approaching and submissions and now being accepted from all over the Lower Mainland and North America for the fifth-annual event.

This year, instead of just high school students, entries are being welcomed from post-secondary students, who will compete in their own category.

“Last year, we had our biggest festival yet,” says director Glen Chua, “and this year we’re expecting even bigger and better things.”

Chua and Tim Reyes, longtime passionate filmmakers, created the festival in 2007 and plan to eventually expand it into the Surrey International Film Festival.

There are six categories students may enter: short films, public service announcements, sports interest videos, animation, screenwriting and post-secondary.

The top films in each category will be invited to the awards gala at the Surrey Arts Centre on June 24 at 7 p.m. for a walk on the red carpet, including paparazzi. The best films will be screened and students are eligible to win thousands of dollars worth of prizes.

All the top films are also guaranteed a screening at the Emerging Filmmakers Forum in Beverly Hills, sponsored by Lightyear Digital – a prize considered priceless to any young filmmaker.

The Best of Surrey trophy will also be awarded to the top Surrey High School Film, and the names of the filmmakers and school are engraved for eternity on a trophy. Tamanawis Secondary won this award in 2007, Kwantlen Park followed in 2008, Fleetwood Park Secondary in 2009 and Earl Marriott in 2010.

“This film festival was created to help inspire students who have a passion for storytelling and film production,” says Chua. “It really is a celebration of the students’ work, and it’s like Oscar night for high schools in the Lower Mainland.

The deadline to submit films is June 10 and the entry fee is $10. Submission forms and entry guidelines can all be found on the official Surrey Film Festival website at www.surreyfilmfest.ca. Previous festival films can also be viewed there.