Joy Ride, one of three short films produced last year in MDIA 4719 (aka “419”), Advanced Narrative Production, won first place in the narrative division of the Broadcast Education Association's annual competition.
Adapted from a short story by Pulitzer Prize winning author Richard Russo, Joy Ride is the story of a mother who, trying to escape her mundane marriage, takes her twelve-year-old son on a transformative road trip from New York to Texas during the 1960s.
The team of students who produced the 28-minute film went on a road trip of their own, shooting much of the movie on location in Texas, Oklahoma and Missouri. Led by producers John Householder and Sarah Craig, and director Brendan Trepal, the students raised $12,000 to shoot the film over spring break, and purchased a 1963 Ford Falcon, which they transported across the country on a flatbed trailer.
“Joy Ride’s first place finish at BEA is richly deserved,” said Associate Professor Frederick Lewis, who has overseen “419” for the past 15 years.
“These students took on a unique challenge, producing much of their movie ‘long distance,’ casting their Texas-based actors and securing their Texas locations via Skype and social media.” The students met these logistical challenges head on, also flying their Ohio- and New York-based actors into and/or out of airports in Dallas, Abilene and Amarillo.
View a Behind the Scenes look at the making of Joy Ride on Vimeo