1. Stella Baker, Key West High School, Key West, FL

  2. Jayden Gillespie, Canyon Crest Academy, Rancho Santa Fe, CA

  3. Trevor Gautereaux, San Marino High School, San Marino, CA

  4. Fez Zafar, Theodore Roosevelt High School, Windsor Heights, IA

  5. Jack Niehaus, Miramonte, High School, Orinda, CA

  6. Julia Weber, Glendale High School, Springfield, MO

  7. Perry Barth, Greenwich High School, Riverside, CT

  8. Jacqueline Demar Gunter, Saint Mary's Hall, San Antonio, TX

  9. Christina Xing, Interlochen Arts Academy, Birmingham, AL



Pitch your next short film for your chance to win a professional digital film camera, HD monitoring and 4K recording device, and editing and color correction software from our friends at Blackmagic Design! Not only will you win amazing professional gear worth more than $7,000, but the three winning films will be automatic official selections at the 2017 AAHSFF and will screen at the AMC Theaters in NYC’s Times Square. 


Contest Details

  • Pitch your 5-minute short film (narrative or documentary).
  • 3 best pitches will each receive a $7,280 equipment package at the 2016 Teen Indie Awards October 9th 2016.
  • Deadline for entries is 8/15/2016.
  • Winning teams will then have until the 2017 AAHSFF final deadline (approx. mid July 2017) to shoot, edit and deliver their completed film project (as pitched).
  • Completed films will be screened during the 2017 AAHSFF. 


  • The entire team must be in high school or younger during the 2015/2016 academic year (current seniors are eligible).
  • The competition is open to international submissions. 
  • Each team must consist of 3-6 filmmakers.
  • Filmmakers can only participate on one team.  
  • Each team can only submit one pitch.
  • The team lead needs to attend the AAHSFF 2016.

Submission Process   

The submission deadline has passed. 

Contest Requirements

  • Winning teams must commit to creating and completing their proposed pitch by mid July 2017 (AAHSFF Submission Deadline).
  • Each team must use the Blackmagic Design equipment.
    • URSA Mini 4.6K EF as the “A” camera.*
    • DaVinci Resolve Studio for color grading and editing.*
      • Fusion for VFX (if needed).*
  • The films do not need to follow a specific theme, but creativity will be rewarded.
  • Films may not include any copyrighted footage or music. They also must not be plagiarized from other works.
  • Films cannot include the visual use of drugs or sex/nudity. Language must be kept at a PG-13 level.  
  • Team’s will be required to participate in periodic check-ins during the production of their film.
    • January 1, 2017: Screenplay and pre-production plan must be submitted.
    •  April 1, 2017: Production must be wrapped with post production starting.
    • July 2017: Film must be completed.
      • *Training for equipment and software to be provided by Blackmagic Design.  

Additional Contest Details

  • Each team will retain the rights to the content produced for the competition.
  • Films will premiere at the 2017 AAHSFF.
  • Films will be featured on the Blackmagic Design website, along with accompanying case studies that highlight the teams’ work. Of note:
    • Teams must participate in developing the case studies. (Examples of current case studies can be found on the Blackmagic Design website:
    • Teams must provide high resolution behind-the-scene video, as well as stills from the film and screenshots of work in DaVinci Resolve Studio during the editing and color grading process.  

Prize Package Details:

An URSA Mini 4.6K – Super 35 digital film camera with 15 stops of dynamic range. Your choice either PL or EF lens mount.

A Video Assist 4K – High resolution monitoring and professional recording device. More Info

DaVinci Resolve Studio – Blackmagic Design’s professional editing and color correction solution. 

Blackmagic Design Shoulder Kit.



Cirina Catania: 

Cirina Catania is Writer, Director, Journalist and former marketing executive with a long history of success in both the major studio and independent film environment. She is one of the co-founders and former director of the Sundance Film Festival. She is a futurist and a digital distribution specialist.

Catania's production credits include National Geographic's "Nat Geo's Most Amazing Photos" as writer/field producer, Nat Geo's "Top Ten Photos of 2011," 12-part series for Discovery Channel, "Southern Steel;" 13 episodes of Lifetime's " Merge," 16 episodes of "Worst Case Scenario," for Columbia Television, 6 episodes of "Untold Stories from the ER," for TLC; and 2 episodes of "Animal Kidding," for Animal Planet.

She produces stories about interesting people worldwide. You can see a few of them (Danny Glover, Ang Lee, Morgan Freeman, John Singleton, etc.) on her YouTube channel, "BrenCara Films" or on Vimeo.

Cirina has produced and directed numerous marketing campaigns in various capacities for over 100 major motion-pictures and mini-series including, "Rainman," "Tombstone," "Stargate," "Yentl," "The Arrival," "Les Miserables," "Rocky IV," four James Bond films beginning with "A View to a Kill," "Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventures," "Poltergeist III," "2010," "Hamlet," and "Total Recall."

During her tenure as Vice President of Worldwide Marketing and Chief Operating Officer of the Theatrical Motion Picture Division of United Artists Pictures, Cirina was responsible for the management of an average yearly operating budget of $200 million. Departments under her supervision included, Strategic Planning, Creative Advertising, Licensing/Promotions, Publicity, Research, Music/Soundtrack Marketing and Budgetary/Administrative.

Cirina is an active member of the Producer's Guild of America, the Writer's Guild of America and IA Local 600.


Randi Altman: 

Randi Altman, editor-in-chief of postPerspective, has been covering the production and post-productions industries for more than 20 years.


Daniel Myrick:

A native of Sarasota Florida, Myrick was raised within the cultural enclave of Long Boat Key where his appreciation for the visual arts continually evolved. Over the subsequent years, Myrick worked in the fields of of freelance art and photography and went on to become one of only thirty applicants to be accepted into the inaugural, University of Central Florida film program.

Not long after graduating with his BA, Myrick teamed up with former film school graduates to create the indie-film sensation, The Blair Witch Project where he was co-writer/director. Considered a seminal work in low budget, filmmaking, as well as, being one of the highest grossing films in history, TBWP ushered in a new methodology of production and grass roots marketing that is still being utilized today. 

Seeing the story telling potential in the web, Daniel was also responsible for producing one of the first online, episodic series back in 2007 entitled, The Strand. Starring Kathrine Helmond, James Morrison with a featured appearance by Kevin Smith. This trail blazing dramatic series was met with rave reviews where it was featured on the KoldCast network.

Shortly afterwards, Myrick wrote and directed Solstice, starring Amanda Seyfried and Shawn Ashmore which shot in the heart of New Orleans. It was picked up and distributed domestically by the Weinstein Co.  This soon led to a partnership with Tony Krantz (EP on 24) and John Shiban (EP on X-Files) to oversee and produce six films under their Raw Feed label for Warner Brothers Home Video. Their flagship production, Rest Stop, became Warner Bros highest selling, non theatrical, video release in history. 

Myrick then went on to write and direct the sci-fi thriller The Objective, shot in the Berber villages of Morocco with current and former military personnel comprising most of the cast. It was soon accepted by the prestigious TriBeCa Film Festival for its world wide premiere, eventually being picked up by IFC films. It’s considered “required viewing” by many in the Special Forces community due to its authentic portrayal of military combat and tactics. 

Most recently, Myrick has completed shooting “Under the Bed”, a “Hitchcockian” thriller shot in Salt Lake City, starring Hannah New (Black Sails) and Beverly D’Angelo (Vacation). He is currently in post and plans for a Summer/Fall 2015 release. 

Myrick is also CEO of Gearhead Pictures based in Pasadena, CA where he’s currently developing several online, television and feature projects that cover a wide variety of genres. Daniel has also been heavily involved with other filmmakers in assisting their careers both as Executive Producer, consultant and providing post production services.