Utah Tech Student and Alumni Films to be Featured at the Kanab Film Festival

By Grayce Payne

Four Utah Tech University students and alumni will have their films shown at the Kanab Film Festival from April 27 to April 30 at Redstone Theater and Quail Park Lodge.

Every year, the Kanab Film Festival hosts a three-day festival featuring independent films, festivities, and food. One Utah Tech student, Ben Vasion, and three UT alumni, Jose Molla, Colby Clanton, and Tanner McCowan, will all have their films screened at the festival.

Vasion’s film, “The Last Goodbye,” follows a young man as he is faced with an inevitable life-changing event and must wrestle with 15 years of withheld feelings. Molla’s film, “Don’t Listen to the Cricket,” follows the story of a man who can’t fall asleep because there’s an annoying cricket in his room. Clanton’s film, “Deliberation,” follows a high school senior who finds himself trapped in a conference room with serious allegations aimed his way. McCowan’s film, “Chasing Shadows,” follows Daniel, a hopeless romantic, who keeps getting in his own way while looking for love, but that isn’t stopping his shadow from trying to find someone for him.

Behind-the-scenes on the set of Jose Molla's film, "Don't Listen to the Cricket."

During his time in Utah Tech’s Digital Film program, Clanton learned how to channel his ambitions and take risks when it came to filmmaking. Due to the connections he made during a study abroad experience in Ireland, he was able to secure one of the actors who he worked with in Ireland to be in his capstone film. His film, “Deliberation,” will start its festival run with the Kanab Film Festival and then later this year, the film will also be screened at the Tennessee International Indie Film Festival.

“To me, this film is a culmination of everything that I learned in school, and it sets me up with a path to move forward,” Clanton said.

Photo from Colby Clanton's film, "Deliberation."

McCowan, the UT alumni behind the film, “Chasing Shadows,” credits the Digital Film program with preparing him to successfully create films in his post-graduate life as he will be filming his first feature-length film, “First Haunt,” in southern Utah this summer.

“We filmed different short films every single weekend for two years to help us get familiar with the equipment and to figure out what roles everyone works best at,” McCowan said.

Behind-the-scenes on the set of Tanner McGowan's film, "Chasing Shadows."

Students in the Digital Film program typically spend several weekends out of every semester producing, filming and editing short films and senior capstone projects. By the time a film student reaches the point where they are responsible for putting together their own capstone film, they’ve already had hands-on experience on a film set.

For more information about the Kanab Film Festival, including screening and event schedules, visit kanabfilmfest.com. To learn more about Utah Tech’s Digital Film program, visit film.utahtech.edu.