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New York City Public School Film Festival

6th Annual New York City Public School Film Festival

The Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment (MOME) and NYC Public Schools congratulate the students whose films were chosen as part of the 6th Annual New York City Public School Film Festival. The New York City Public School Film Festival is an opportunity for students to submit their work and perhaps see it screened. 

Thirty student films (Click Here for the Festival Program) from public schools citywide were selected in the categories of Feature/Narrative, Animation, Experimental, PSA Advocacy and Documentary by a panel of NYC Public School Film Festival teachers and media professionals. The student filmmakers chosen represent the diversity of public school student voices across the five boroughs.

NYC Public School Film Festival animation

Pirate Skirmish | Director: Lucas Oliver Chi | Writer & Producer: Joseph Chen | Editor: Zayn Islam | Music: Ivan Jin | School: Nathaniel Hawthorne Middle School 74 | Teacher: Keith Crowley | Principal: Brandon Contarsy
About: Two Pirate ships clash.

Attack of the Living Clay | Filmmaker: Jackson Milott | School: Beacon High School | Teacher: Richard Kaplan | Principal: Johnny Ventura
About: During a zombie outbreak, a clay man chops with scissors, mutilates with an electric toothbrush, and mushes with a blender, slashing his way to a happy ending. Could be a bloodbath, but clay doesn’t bleed.

Dopelgänger | Filmmaker: Shaun Blade Valentin | School: Gramercy Arts High School | Teacher: Emily Lemp | Principal: Pamela Mudzingwa
About: In a neon lit alleyway, a skilled fighter dukes it out with what seems to be a clone of himself in the dead of night.

Collaborative Rotoscope Project | Filmmakers: Asma Ali, Mariam Baioumi, Mayely Banegas, Zharia Batson, Vale Chauca, Nusrat Chowdhury, Caroline Cooper, Emma Dzaferovic, Enas Eddini, Louisa Ersenkal, Iveth Escandon, Kaylee Hernandez, Umamah Rahman, Jamie Sarmiento, Mahima Siddika, Fatma Tarek-Hassan, Subaita Tarika, Iroha Tokumoto, Tenzin Pema Tseten | School: The Young Women’s Leadership School of Astoria | Teacher: Kayla Marte | Principal: Mala Panday
About: High school students in the Filmmaking Elective class at The Young Women’s Leadership School of Astoria traced and drew animation frames to create an upbeat rotoscope animation with visually expressive backgrounds.

Lethal Love | Filmmaker: Naobi Victoria Lagos | School: Epic High School South | Teacher: Matthew Palermo | Principal: Subhas Mohan
About: An allegory for interfamilial relationships.

NYC Public School Film Festival experimental

Beautiful Vulnerability | Filmmakers: Francesca Powell Lee, Chayanne Oyola, Tiany Sanchez, Brian Fajardo, O-Daniel Raby, Raynee Beltran, Christian Acosta, Melady Hernandez | Songwriter: Chantell Hiraldo | School: The Theatre Arts Production Company School | Teacher: Steven Mudrick | Principal: Ron Link
About: Chantell Hiraldo, a sophomore at the Theatre Arts Production Company School, wrote an original song for the rFUTURE project that addresses the issues of social disconnection and bullying. By mixing the documentary and music video genres, filmmakers at the school filmed various vignettes to demonstrate this problem and suggest a solution.

The Clown Who Couldn’t Juggle | Director & Writer: Jessie Curzio | Director of Photography: Johnathan Svitsky | Camera Operator: Maxine Sahu | Lighting: Evelyn MchLaughlin, Patrick Thompson Jr. | School: Frank Sinatra School of the Arts High School | Teacher: Jason Spagnuoli | Principal: Gideon Frankel
About: A personal narrative film focused on a struggling clown’s performance on stage.

Rem.Mp4 | Writer, Director, DP & Producer: Jonathan Svitsky | Key Cast: Jessie Curzio | Editor: Jonathan Svitsky | Additional Editor: Bruno Nario | Special Thanks To: Saara Al-Sawah | School: Frank Sinatra School of the Arts High School | Teacher: Jason Spagnuoli | Principal: Gideon Frankel
About: Where do we go when we dream? Inspired by the YouTube Analog Horror genre.

Revivir (Revive) | Filmmakers: Gabriel Tejada, Brian Fajardo, Maria Pastor Martinez, O Daniel Raby | Songwriters: Miguel Dota, Mathias Calle | School: The Theatre Arts Production Company School | Teacher: Steven Mudrick | Principal: Ron Link
About: Two students, Miguel Dota and Mathias Calle from the International High School at Lafayette confront this problem through an original song called “Revivir” (Revive) that they co-wrote for the rFUTURE project. Through a passionate plea, the young men ask their peers to consider a world without cellphones, social media and video games, and consider a world that is more natural and offer the simple pleasures of life.

NYC Public School Film Festival narrative

Stranger Strings | Director: Rosie Perez | School: P.S./I.S. 187 Hudson Cliffs | Teacher: Michael Bridenstine | Principal: Emel Topbas Mejia
About: A young girl gets a birthday gift that proves to be anything other than celebratory.

Nobody | Directors, Writers, & Producers: Marco Antonio Cajilima-Curillo, Samuel Emilio Gardner, Ethan Midas Aquino | Editor: Samuel Emilio Gardner | Hair & Makeup: Micaela Crimi | Camera: Mya Saito, Angie Portes | Grip and Electric: Alan DeLeon, Mathew Gomes | Gaffer: Ethan Midas Aquino, Roger Ramirez | Sound: Samuel Emilio Gardner, Ivan Kashem | Production Design: Samer Ahmed, Beija Crespo, Katherine Sillero | Extras: Mia Ortega, Jaiden Moore | School: Academy for Careers in Television and Film | Teacher: Ryan Bennet | Principal: Alexandra Stahl
About: A kid with a knack for exploration decides to break off from the group while touring a school when weird things start to happen.

Hide and Seek | Director: Nasya Prime | Writer: Domonique Francis | Producers: Domonique Francis, Nasya Prime, Angel Rodriguez, Zeke Robles | Key Cast: Zeke Robles, Angel Ramirez, Domonique Francis, Ben Ducoff, Amnon Carmi, Juan Vega III | School: H.E.R.O. High School | Teacher: Benjamin Ducoff | Principal: Kristin Cahill Garcia
About: When a violent criminal finds his way into a school building, a group of students in detention band together to take him down.

TJ | Directors: Mathilda De Champeaux, Maeve Hennert | School: The Clinton School | Teacher: Michael McGuire | Principal: Jonathan Levin
About: A woman discusses life with an AI Chatbot.

Man To Man | Director: Marielis Soto | Writer: Jefferson David | Producers: Rey Reyes, Five4Five Films | Key Cast: Marielis Soto, Jefferson David, Rey Reyes | School: Bronx Leadership Academy High School | Principal: Courtnei Davis
About: A star college basketball player collides with his famed coach when a secret is revealed and the coach’s true colors come out.

Bingley | Director: Zane Mills Vanwicklen | School: The High School of Art and Design | Teacher: Michael Bridenstine | Principal: Maximillia Re Sugiura
About: An overzealous young student lets her need for high grades get in the way of her friendship.

Lone | Director: Torel Allen | Producer: Torel Allen | Key Cast: Torel Allen, Delano Hubbard, Matthew Brown, Ifesowapo Dehinde, Parys Kennedy, Lancelot Charles, Diamondstar Bascome, Sheilya Ramirez | School: Uncommon Preparatory Charter High School | Teacher: Rachael Guma | Principal: Sean Gavin
About: A high school student who finds a unique revenge against the bullies in his school.

NYC Public School Film Festival psa advocay

In My Head | Director & Writer: Sebanyah S Buckmire | Producers: Sebanyah S. Buckmire, Kei-seanna D. Hines-Pugh, Jennifer A Romero, Yotzin I. Reyes | Key Cast: Ailyn E Gomez | School: High School for Media and Communications | Teacher: Zulaika Velazquez | Principal: Sofia Russo
About: The story of a teen girl struggling with anxiety and depression. Showing how easy it is for these mental illnesses to be overlooked by any and everyone.

Static Starvation | Director: Emma Grigoryev | Producers: Emma Grigoryev, Emma Sit | Cinematographer: Emma Sit | Editor: Emma Grigoryev | School: Midwood High School | Teacher: Henry Mei | Principal: Robert Quinlan
About: Stuck in a constant cycle of starvation, a girl’s anorexia nervosa begins to become more than just an eating disorder, leaving her helpless to its will. As her grasp of control starts to loosen, she is forced to have a moment of clarity.

It Girl | Director & Writer: Audrey Taveras | Key Cast: Angelisse Jimenez, Kisha Garcia, Audrey Taveras | Sound Operator: Demarkus McKinney | Lighting Director: Caliph Graham | Director of Photography: Demarkus McKinney | School: High School for Media and Communications | Teacher: Zulaika Velazquez | Principal: Sofia Russo
About: Smiles can mask inner battles.

NYC Public School Film Festival documentary

Husky Table- Cucumber and Tomato Salad | Director: Matthew Gellerstein | Additional Filmmakers: John Thomas Cortez, Matthew D’Oria, Matthew Martinez, Gianna Ferrari, Matthew Gellerstein, Leonardo Quacinella, Joseph Raia, Darren Mino, Yosef Shwel, Anthony Donato, Joshua Elias, Michael Palazzolo, Anthony Correa, Mousa Abdelfattah | School: P37R The David Marquis School of the Arts | Teacher: Robert Leavey | Principal: Cori Regan
About: In this episode of Husky Table, the students of P37R bring farm-to-table ingredients to life in a refreshing cucumber and tomato salad.

The Trials and Tribulations of Raising a Hornworm | Director: Lucia Engardio | School: The High School of Art and Design | Teacher: Molly Snyder-Fink | Principal: Maximillia Re Sugiura
About: A young woman contemplates her responsibilities and attachments to her hornworm before it becomes free and dies.

Dr. Quinlan: Midwood’s 9th Principal | Directors: Romy Swisa, Emma Grigoryev | Executive Producer: Henry Mei | Creative Director: Anel Yerdenayeva | Editor: Trisha Primus | Cinematographers: Emma Sit, Queenie Zhou | Production Assistant: Emily Chen | School: Midwood High School | Teacher: Henry Mei | Principal: Robert J Quinlan
About: Midwood High School’s 9th principal, Dr. Robert J Quinlan and his new role in the school community. | Director & Writer: Joseph Hinz | Key Cast: Sasha Belokon, Andy Chen, Nadine Pedzich, James Paronich, Derek Nguyen, David Luu, Lila Donahue, Roni Aziz, Michael Van Buren, Chanikan Phusanam, Victoria Bernadskiy | School: Staten Island Technical High School | Teacher: Michael Van Buren | Principal: Mark Erlenwein
About: Recaps the experiences of three student filmmakers during the creative process of their own short films/documentaries.

This is Graffiti in New York City | Director, Writer, & Producer: Shawn Perez | Key Cast: Dan Weaver | School: Sunset Park High School | Principal: Miguel Negron | About: A brief history of NYC graffiti.

Commuters | Director: Evan Perazzo | School: Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts | Principal: Deepak Marwah
About: With dreams of making it big, thousands of 8th graders audition each year for a chance to attend New York City’s Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School for Music & Art and Performing Arts. The only thing harder than getting in… is getting there.

I, Too, Sing America | Director, Writer & Producer: Rocio Ines Flores | Key Cast: Chadrick Harris, Lizbeth Perez, Maicki Carbente, Julianna Jack, Emma Oliva, Alvaro Tinaure, Rocio Ines Flores, Thomas May | Camera: Jhonnatan Heredia, Raziya Howard, Kevin Xiao | School: Cyberarts Studio Academy | Teachers: Kayinde Harris, Anderson Zaca | Principal: Valrie Wauchope
About: Prepare to be amazed by the incredible project, “I, Too, Sing America,” an extraordinary production brought to life by an immensely talented group of students. “I, Too, Sing America” is a powerful ode to diversity and the immigrant experience. This film embodies the rich cultural tapestry of NYC, a melting pot of different cultures.

Glitch | Director: Danielle Crossdale | Writers: Alisson Pastrana, Donasia Rogers, Christopher Canogo, Orlando Charles, JoJo Kennedy, Tyquan McDonald | Producers: Jocelyn Veintimilla, Elijah Singleton, Nasir Kinlaw, Jamar Brannigan, Jenifer Cordova, Jayla Mendoza, Brianna Moore, Alana Himber, Freda Raitelu, Luz Martell, David Nelinson | School: East Brooklyn Community High School | Teacher: David Nelinson | Principal: Patrick Mcgillicuddy
About: A mockumentary-style short film set in East Brooklyn Community High School, where students and staff grapple with escalating technology glitches and eerie paranormal activity. Through interviews and found footage, the film captures the mounting tension as rumors of hauntings and conspiracies unfold.

Duke | Director & Producer: Nicola Nasser | Writer: Loor Nasser | Key Cast: Duke Amori, Loor Nasser, Joseph Nasser, Jude Nasser, Luke Nasser, Warrd Nasser | School: Riverdale / Kingsbridge Academy | Principal: Lori O’Mara
About: In this heartfelt video, we introduce Duke, a spirited black Labrador retriever who became a cherished member of our family at the tender age of 2-3 months. The narrative unfolds as we discover that Duke, despite his joyful and playful demeanor, is facing a challenging health condition—congenital bilateral hip dysplasia. The video takes a deeper dive into Duke’s condition as we visit the veterinarian to understand the gravity of his situation.

6th Annual New York City Public School Film Festival showcase highlights

6th Annual New York City Public School Film Festival