Film 4545 presents "The Salesman”

April 02 2019

Each year, the Film & Media Arts Department holds the Short Script Competition, inviting Univeristy of Utah students to submit their screenplays for the chance to see their stories brought to life by the students of the FILM 4545 course. The class votes on their favorite script and eventually reaches a consensus on the best choice to produce throughout the academic year. This year’s winning script, “The Salesman” by Brogan Bouwhius, is currently in production in Filmmaking II class, which is operating like production company within the Film & Media Arts Department.

“Each student has a role within the production company based on their previous experiences as well as the roles that need to be filled to produce a film. This involves an interview process where each student displays past work and talks about their strengths and interests regarding filmmaking” says the film’s Director of Marketing, Andrew Schneider. “The roles taken on in the production range from Director, Producer, to Costume designer, to behind the scenes photographer, to editor, and also location scout. There are plenty of roles to fill with students and it is more likely than not that students will take on duties of at least one of their preferred roles.”

“The Salesman,” a psychological drama/thriller, tells the story of the recently widowed character, Lucille Gith, who invites a door-to-door salesman into her home where he gives her a very peculiar sales pitch. With little time to produce the film, the class was faced with important decisions right away and made casting and location questions their first priority.

The class settled on a hybrid approach and shot on location in addition to building a set in a studio space on campus where the majority of the film will take place. Taking on a large and complex project like “The Salesman” has its share of challenges, but also provides the class with a unique opportunity to expand their knowledge and skillsets.

“The biggest challenge we have faced so far is learning everything on the fly as we implement strategies. Most of us have never done a production like this, so we are starting at square one,” says Schneider. “We're determined to make a good film, so we are trying to treat it as professionals rather than just another student film. To accomplish this level of professionalism, we've had to strike a balance between learning skills and implementing them that has been quite a challenge.”

“The Salesman” will officially debut in the Fall 2019 F&MAD Fest. Don’t miss your opportunity to see the outcome of FILM 4545’s hard work!