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The Student News Site of Washington International School

International Dateline

The Student News Site of Washington International School

International Dateline

An Inside Look Into the Narrative Film Class

Sophomore+Klara+Young+holding+a+camera+used+for+filming+her+groups+film+project+in+the+Narrative+Film+class.+%28Courtesy+of+Martina+Tognato-Guaqueta%29.
Sophomore Klara Young holding a camera used for filming her group’s film project in the Narrative Film class. (Courtesy of Martina Tognato-Guaqueta).

Project Studio B is full of underclassmen working to create short films about tacos and mystery and everything in between. They are part of the narrative film class, taught by Michael McCorkle. The class is very popular, and due to strong interest, the school is offering the class in an extra block. 

Narrative film is divided into multiple groups that act as production companies. The first group, sophomores Klara Young, Lila Lefevre-Iwata, Ava Gonzalez, William Crawford, and Martina Tognato-Guaqueta, call themselves One Girl production.

They have finished filming their movie and are now working on the editing process.

“Basically, the story is [Crawford], who’s playing George, all of his things go missing and his friends are missing too,” Lefevre-Iwata said. “The only person left is this new girl he doesn’t know.”

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Part of the class’s appeal is the unique moments that happen during filming.

For example, Crawford’s pants ripped during filming. “It was a scene where I kidnap Bill into the classroom, and [his pants] caught on the door handle,” Lefevre-Iwata said. Upon playing the scene, the rip was clearly audible.

The second group was working in A03 to download music for their film. They were using classical music to match the main character’s personality.

“I’m a fine arts guy,” sophomore John Merz added jokingly.

Tu tu Productions consists of sophomores Samuel Huffard and John Merz, and freshmen Margot Stavropoulos and Francisco Gonzalez-Berrington. They created a movie about a high school reunion, an idea Huffard had last year when he took narrative film and wanted to try out.

The third group, Diversity Highers Incorporated, has just finished filming.

The group, sophomores Robert Heneghan, Biram N’Diaye, Kyle McIndoe and Leo Franusic Dauphin, were creating a movie called Tacos for TikTok. 

Franusic Dauphin is the lead actor and Heneghan took on the role of directing. 

“In the early days, we did nothing, and two classes ago we had to start reshooting everything because it was all awful,” Heneghan said. He also added that students are given “a lot of room [to] experience the filming process for ourselves.”

Sophomores William Crawford, Ava Gonzalez, Lila Lefevre-Iwata and Martina Tognato-Guaqueta preparing for shooting their group film project. (Courtesy of Martina Tognato-Guaqueta).

While each students’ favorite part of class differs, they all have one thing in common: their love for Craft Services.

Craft Services is a table in Project Studio B that McCorkle puts together for students in his classes and clubs to enjoy. The idea stems from how, in real movie productions, the staff is there all day, so they’re provided with a snack table. McCorkle is recreating this for his classes.

One person from each group in the narrative film class brings something in, so it’s a collaboration. “It’s a lovely idea and we all really appreciate it,” Heneghan said.

However, McCorkle and his students want to remind their peers that there are some guidelines. 

“It was also reported that students not associated with the narrative film classes, the clubs that I sponsor or receive the emails that I send, have been availing themselves to the craft services table,” McCorkle said in an email.

He asked students to extend him the courtesy of asking for permission before taking snacks if they aren’t in narrative film, The 3100 Show, Black Student Union, or the Upper School Film Club. 

“He’s never going to say no if you ask [McCorkle], but it’s very impolite to just go ahead and take some,” Huffard said.

Overall, students enjoy the class, love their teacher, and would highly recommend it.

“We would recommend it and we really think [McCorkle] makes the class special,” Heneghan said.

By Isabella Duchovny

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Isabella Duchovny, Managing Editor

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