Cerritos student’s film makes its way to festival

Laura Chau

Cerritos College film student Peter Catania’s short film “Writer’s Block” was featured at the So Cal Film Festival in Huntington Beach on Oct. 1.

Out of 1,000 submissions “Writer’s Block” was one of the 96 short films that was chosen to be viewed at the five-day festival.

His film, which has already received honorable mention at 3C Media Solutions Fifth Annual Student Film & Video Festival, won the award for student filmmaking at the festival.

Tony Perez, the actor in the film, was nominated for Best Actor.

The award for Audience Choice has yet to be announced, but Catania is hopeful.

“Based on the viewers reactions to the other shorts (films), I think it went really well,” Catania said.

The film is the story of a writer overcoming his writer’s block.

“I wanted to show what all authors and writers go through at a particular moment in time when they think they just can’t write anymore and how frustrating it can get,” he said.

It begins with a writer who walks out to a grassy field with his typewriter. As he strokes the keys on his typewriter, notes come out, as if he was playing a keyboard.

In his attempt to write his story, he gets writer’s block and conjunctively, the notes scramble and make no particular melody.

As he recovers from his writer’s block, the notes begin to reassemble themselves into a melodic song, once again.

Miranda Mirasol, an art major at Orange Coast College, believes that Catania, “hit the nail on the head.”

“I watched the film, and I can relate to how that writer felt. The way he illustrated the writing process was precise from an artistic standpoint.

“It’s brilliant because when you find your voice, finally, the music is so beautiful,” she added.

Although the music is an essential part of telling the story, it was not Catania’s first intention to use it to help tell his story.

“When we got to pre-production, we found out that the camera didn’t have an audio sync with it,” Catania said.

Without an audio sync, Catania and his music composer, Max Cuzor, had to think of a different way to incorporate audio to his film.

“We came up with the idea that when he (Perez’ character) types, we’ll have the notes play and the emotion could come out of there rather than a voiceover.

“I thought a voiceover would take away from what I was trying to show,” Catania said.

Catania is currently in the middle of writing a screenplay, his fourth film, which he is very tight lipped about.

“No, no, no,” Catania jokes, “that screenplay needs its tweaking before I give out that inside information.”

However, Catania does state that it is a mystery/thriller film noir.

The film will be shot next year.