2012 Ringling Film Student Wins Award

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    Nov. 26, 2012 - Ringling College Digital Filmmaking Alum, Sean Benson, earned the award for Best Short Film for his senior thesis film project THE FOREVER at The Florida Motion Picture & Television Association’s 23rd Crystal Reel Awards Gala held in Orlando on Saturday, November 10. The annual FMPTA event honors and highlights outstanding achievements in motion picture, television, audio recording and digital media productions created in Florida over the past year. 

    "This is an incredible honor not only for me, but every single person involved on THE FOREVER. I was gratefully stunned at how serious my production team of fellow Ringling College students were about making it happen. Because of the rich and dimensional performances by FSU/Asolo Conservatory actors, the open-door attitude of local Sarasota businesses, the hard work of the crew, the Digital Film program, and the support of my family and friends, this film made it to an exceptional caliber. A best Florida-made short film of the year caliber," says Benson.

    Benson’s film tells the story of a young graphic designer named Dave who, in a desperate attempt to keep his girlfriend Mica from moving away, sells his beloved muscle car to buy an engagement ring. With his career on the line, his path to proposal is stymied by the unreliability of his new transportation, his hapless roommate Jake and a stop light car-jacking by a mysterious and provocative artist named Taylor. Dave is taken on a journey that tests his will and ultimately forces his true desires to the surface.

    Tony Stopperan, who played the lead role of Dave, expressed his gratitude at having been a part of the film. “Ringling College’s Digital Film Program is one of the best in the world and for them to reach out to me, an FSU/Asolo Conservatory MFA student, to be the lead actor in their film demonstrates how important artistic collaboration is at Ringling and in the Sarasota Arts Community. THE FOREVER was a great learning opportunity and tremendously gratifying for me as a performer.” 

    Of the award, Brad Battersby, Head of Digital Filmmaking at Ringling College: “I'm thrilled that THE FOREVER, a film that represents untold hours of collaboration among our producing, production design, and thesis students, has been recognized with this excellent award! It's a genuine endorsement of our approach to film education in the Digital Filmmaking Department.” 

    Written and directed by Benson, the production also included the talents of current Ringling Digital Filmmaking students—Ashley Bonn, Producer; Jeffrey Boos, Co-Producer; and, fellow alum—Nicholas Morgulis, as Director of Photography. The Forever cast featured Stopperan, Ashley Scallon as Taylor, Valerie Boucvalt as Mica, Ben Anderson as Jake, Dan Bright as Mr. Johnson, and Jon-Michael Miller. 

    Visit www.theforevermovie.com to watch the trailer and read more on the making of THE FOREVER, the latest news and awards.