What started as a HSC project, and aimed to offer some perspective as victim of cyber bullying, has now landed a Hunter high-school student the chance to show his talents to a much wider audience.
A short film written and directed by Tomaree High Year 12 student Zac Shaw has been listed as a finalist in the highly acclaimed Reelise Film Festival, to be screened at VMAX at Event Cinemas at Bondi Junction.
An aspiring filmmaker from a young age, Zac, a 17-year-old from Nelson Bay, said he enjoyed every minute of the HSC project, which is part of the school's Big Picture Program.
"I have always loved watching movies and I was probably about seven years old when I shot my first video," he said.
"Over the years I have have developed my skills both behind the camera and in front of the camera. I don't mind acting but I much prefer directing."
Zac said he wanted to do something different with his entry in the Reelise, a film festival open to students who are trying to make the world a better place.
"The film is called 'Social Reality' and it is shot from the perspective of a cyber bullying victim. The entire five minutes takes place within a video screen, in fact I shot it to look like it was not a film.
"It still features actors, voice overs and face time characters but they are all on computer screens."
Zac said he found editing the film from approximately 40 minutes back to five minutes a challenge. "I wrote the original script to go much longer than the five minutes allowed for the festival.
"But even more difficult was extending the film to seven minutes [for his HSC project] after it had been cut to five."
Zac, who compliments his studies at Tomaree High by doing a TAFE course in screen and media, said he has been fortunate to have his parents and school teachers very supportive of his filmmaking aspirations.
Zac is also up for the People's Choice category in Reelise and people can vote online. The Reelise Film Festival 2019 will screen in VMAX at Event Cinemas, Bondi Junction, on May 18.