A Celebration for Our Fall Graduates 

Come celebrate the end of the fall semester with an exciting night of student films and pitches!   
On Friday, December 3rd, Film at Mason will host a Mini Fall Film Senior Showcase highlighting and celebrating the work of our senior students and winter graduates!  The Showcase will be held in-person in the Johnson Center Cinema.  Visit Mason360 to register for this FREE event!   
Showcase Schedule 
5:00pm-6:00pm – Pitch Competition (FAVS 498) 
6:00pm-6:30pm – Screening of Senior Films (FAVS 499) 
6:30pm-7:00pm – Capstone Q&A (FAVS 496, FAVS 497, FAVS 499)  
7:00pm-7:30pm – Awards Celebration 
Face masks are required to be worn indoors at all times.  Every attendee should be prepared to present a green COVID Heath Check result at the door to ensure entry.  Attendees may display their Health Check results digitally or on a print-out.  Click here to access the Mason COVID Health Check. 
Directions and parking instructions can be found here.    
We look forward to seeing you at the Showcase! 

Highlighted Spring 2022 Courses

Students may now register for Spring 2022 courses. If you have not done so already, please meet with your academic advisor to discuss course options and review your schedule. We will be updating our website as more information becomes available for what to expect next semester. See below for a list of special topic course offerings. 
FAVS 399 Radical Camera   
This theory and practice course explores experimental film practice in abstract film forms for personal, socio-political, and artistic expression. We focus on American experimental film traditions in LGBTQ, Black, and Feminist independent cinema. Students will also research a filmmaker and tradition aligned with their own interests. Creative assignments are designed to expand students’ voice and expression as cinematic artists. Projects include making several short films, film exercises, presenting a research assignment, and short writing exercises. The course is designed through anti-racist, feminist, trans, and queer philosophies. Course content includes some films and performances that are explicitly sexual, including nudity. Some films express moments of violence or trauma.  

Professor G Chesler (they/them)  
Monday | 4:30 - 7:10pm | Online  
*Fulfills Authoring or Diversity of Perspectives
*Prereq: FAVS 280, 260, 255, and 225  
Photo: Dyketactics by Barbara Hammer
FAVS 300 Global Horror   
This course examines the prevalent and underlying themes and anxieties reflected in horror and science fiction films, as well as their social and political contexts. Such films grapple with racialized fears of the Other, anxieties about the social agency of women and “minorities”, the dissolution of the patriarchal family, the trauma of war, and anxieties over technology in our daily lives.   

Our critical study covers different historical, national, and transnational contexts, thinking about how they have been marketed and exchanged through global capital flows. We begin the course by focusing on the essence of genre cinema and why it has remained a major narrative form in many national cinemas. By the end of the course, students will have a deeper understanding of what the different, similar, and changing representations of these many themes tell us about how we imagine the world today and how it was imagined in the past.  
Professor Samirah Alkassim (she/her)  
Thursday | 1:30 - 4:10pm | MTB 1007  
Async Online  

Professor Maillim Santiago (she/her)  
Async Online  

*Fulfills Global Understanding and Diversity of Perspectives
Photo: Get Out by Jordan Peele
FAVS 431 Advanced Cinematography  
Students in Advance Cine spend time refining their ability to view and assess light setups in classic and present-day films and learn how to use those techniques in their own work. Students practice using the latest lighting fixtures and grip practices. They're encouraged to apply what they learn in the classroom to their student productions. By using rented equipment, the course helps students decide how to best use the limited resources available on their student productions. Lastly, students conduct tests (sensor, lens, filter and post-production) to gain a better understanding of how to evaluate the gear they will encounter as cinematographers.  
Professor Hans Charles (he/him)  
Tuesday | 1:30 - 4:10pm | AB 1007  
Photo: Mud Bound by Dees Rees 
FAVS 110 Reading and Making Media 
This course provides the foundations for students to become critical, anti-racist consumers and savvy, ethical producers of digital, visual, and audio media. Students will learn to identify and analyze formal elements of films, television, commercials, and user-generated content (for examples, for YouTube and TikTok ). At the same time, students will develop skills in media production, including videography, sound recording, and video/sound editing. 

Professor Justin Plakas (he/him) 
Wednesday | 4:30-7:10pm | AB 2001 

Save the Dates 

This winter break, we are working on scheduling event plans for the Visiting Filmmakers Series as well as workshops and our annual Mason Film Festival. Mark these dates on your calendars and visit to stay updated on recently scheduled events.  
Film at Mason Winter Warm-up and Production Fair
Friday, February 3 | 2pm-4pm | The MIX in Horizon Hall 

Welcome back to campus! Join us for some free hot chocolate and get (re)acquainted with Film at Mason students, faculty, and staff. Learn about campus resources, upcoming events, and workshops. You’ll also see the resources you can reserve for use in the new MIX space, including a green screen and media room. If you are directing a senior film, come prepared to pitch your project. All students can sign up to work as cast and crew on films. Join the fun and bring your friends who are interested in film. This event is open to all CVPA students.  
Mason Film Festival
Wednesday, May 4 – Saturday, May 7 | JC Cinema

This year will be the largest student film festival yet, combining films from Fall 21 and Spring 22 semesters into a four-day Festival. In addition, we’re inviting alumni who were unable to screen their films in-person due to the pandemic. We plan to have the pitch competition and senior showcase block on the last day of the Festival, Saturday, May 7th. (Specific block times are forthcoming.)  

Alumni Achievement

Alexander Hammett ('21) recently won Best Director for his short film “Tale of Tarot” at the Miami Indie Film Awards. Fellow alum Aaliyah-Janay Williams ('21) wrote the script. You can view the full film on Amazon at this link. Alex recently finished screening his short film “Stuck” as part of the Best of Film at Mason Showcase, which traveled to Washington West Film Festival and Sherwood Community Center in Fairfax. 
Mikayla Fridley (’17) has been busy since graduation. Shortly after receiving her BA from FAVS, she worked at Verizon Digital Media as a Live Events Operator, where she inserted commercial breaks into live sports programming. In late 2018, she was offered a position at Discovery and has been working there since as a Digital Content Services Technician in the Media Prep department. In this position, she performs technical reviews and manages database entry of content to ensure media are ready to air on television and digital platforms. 

Faculty Achievement   

Professor Nikyatu Jusu was recently named one of the top 10 directors to watch for 2022 by Variety. Since the summer, Professor Jusu has been in production on her feature film Nanny, a thriller following an immigrant nanny piecing together a new life in New York City who is confronted by a violent presence. Read the full announcement in Variety here.
The Cindependent Film Festival presented a reading of Professor Tommy Britt's script  Ashlee Knows. Additionally, the  Austin Film Festival recognized his digital series script, Marriage Two Ways as a Second Rounder in the script competition. 
Professor Amanda Kraus was recognized for her 15 years of service at George Mason University. She was included in this year's university-wide celebration. Thank you, Professor Kraus, for all the hard work you have done to help build our Film at Mason program and community.  
Professor Hans Charles worked as cinematographer for Bitchin’: The Sound and Fury of Rick James, a documentary of legendary funk artist Rick James. Directed by Sacha Jenkins, the film has screened at Tribeca and is available to watch on Showtime.

Film Opportunities and Resources  

Open Submissions  
Learning Opportunities and Workshops  
  • Hillman Grad Mentorship Lab - This 10-month, tuition-free program grants Fellows the opportunity to enhance their creative skillset through personalized instruction from industry professionals, creating additional pathways to bring more people from diverse backgrounds into the entertainment industry. Click on the link to learn more.
  • Picture Motion - This award-winning impact agency for film, storytelling, and pop culture is starting a pilot college ambassador program to give students a chance to deepen their knowledge of the industry, make connections for their future careers, and bring social impact through entertainment onto their campuses. If interested, sign up using this form.

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Film and Video Studies
College of Visual and Performing Arts
4400 University Dr. MSN 5D8
Fairfax, VA 22030
703-993-3287 |
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