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December 2013 Newsletter


Hello Everyone!

Well, it is almost the end of 2013 and I can’t believe how much FFI has accomplished this past year. Wow, time truly flies by when working hard and having fun! My staff and I really have had a wonderful time producing such fantastic films with our CINEMA/summer film camp/after school program film students. It has been a terrific year for short films and I am quite proud of the creativity, focus and teamwork our participants have demonstrated this year. Congrats to all of the filmmakers for a job well done!

Please read below for all of the newest updates. And as always, please stay connected to us via our Facebook/Tumblr/Twitter pages and the new and improved FFI website

I want to personally wish each and every one of you the very best Holiday season ever, and thank you all for helping to make this year the Florida Film Institute’s finest to date.


I would like to welcome 2 new Board Members who have joined our FFI family!

Ana Alba, Treasurer
Tim Schwaegler, Secretary

Ana is no stranger to our family as she first started out as our Summer Film Camp intern. Then she moved up to our Admin person while she was attending college. Ana loves us so much that she has accepted an FFI Board position.

Ana Alba is a film lover and photography enthusiast. She was exposed to the entertainment world at an early age, which led her to later explore the business sector of film and broadcast. She attended the University of Miami, where she graduated with a degree in Advertising and Psychology and is now an active member of the local film community. She has been appointed as our new Treasurer.

Tim Schwaegler is a graduate from the University of Illinois with a Bachelors of Science in Journalism. He moved to Miami two years ago and began working as an associate producer at the Nightly Business Report, a nationally broadcast news program on PBS. He was in charge of all of their social media outlets including the management of their website. Currently he is freelancing for a local media production company as a videographer and editor. He has been appointed as our new Secretary.

Michelle Massanet has been appointed as our new Vice-President and Carmen Flescher will remain as Director.

I would like to thank Cecilia Dubon Slesnik for her years of service on the FFI Board. We wish her the very best with the expansion of her family with a new little one on the way.


1st Semester Schools

Felix Varela Senior HS (FVHS)
Their film, ONE FOR ONE, is a lighthearted dramedy depicting the life of an all but typical high school student who just wants himself and everyone around him to be happy, despite the stress he is put under.

**This project was filmed on November 16th. The cast and crew did an awesome job before, during and after the production. The editors are now working on a rough cut of the film and we look forward to reviewing it soon.

Miami Lakes Educational Center (MLEC)
Their film, HARMONIC, is a high school drama, Skylar Macharthy is new to high school. The moment she steps on campus, she notices that this school might not end up being as safe as she has been told it was. Skylar makes a new friend named Jade, with a troublesome brother named Brandon. Throughout her first day, Skylar notices accidents happening left and right. What will happen next?

**This project is scheduled to be filmed on December 7th. Currently, the cast and crew are in the middle of pre-production and rehearsals.

Turner Technical Arts High School (TTAHS)
Their film, WHO ARE YOU, REALLY? is a drama, Kevin begins dating a girl during his sophomore year but, she isn’t what she seems. She will go to great lengths to keep anyone away; that she feels is a threat to her relationship with Kevin.

**This project is scheduled to be filmed on December 14th. At this given time the cast and crew are in the middle of pre-production and rehearsals.

Alonzo & Tracy Mourning Senior High (ATMHS)
Their film, SORRY, BRAH is a comedy; Chris is a normal teenager trying to survive the ins and outs of high school. One day, an innocent encounter with Mike, the school bully, turns into a major misunderstanding. Now, Chris and his friend will have to think, talk, hide, and run their way out of this very strange day.

** This project is scheduled to be filmed on January 17th, 2014. Right now the script is being finalized and cast auditions will take place next month.

2nd Semester Schools

An Advanced Film class at Coral Reef Senior High School has been chosen to begin the CINEMA program on January 7th, 2014.

A freshman TV production class at Robert Morgan Educational Center has been chosen to begin the CINEMA program on January 10, 2014.


In partnership with the Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami (MOCA), FFI has brought our award winning CINEMA Program to their facilities. This is a free, After School Teen Program that has been meeting every Tuesday from 4:00pm – 6:00pm. Currently, the film program participants have just finished the rough draft of the script and pre-production sessions will begin by early December. This project is scheduled to be filmed on February 15, 2014. For more information please check out If you are interested in auditioning for the film please contact our office at


Dylan Perez-Rubio participated in the FFI Cinerama Saturday program in 2011-2012. He was selected as Director of Photography for the award winning film “The Purr”. The film was the winner of the 2012 FFI Annual Screening for Best Film, Director, Cinematography, Screenplay, Editing and Lighting. It was also the winner of the 2012 Yosemite Film Festival Sierra Award; the Official Entry: 2012 The Education Channel (IFF) and was an official entry for 2012 FLIFF Certificate of Merit. Dylan is now at student at Miami-Dade Community College School of Entertainment & Design Technology (SEDT) and hopes to pursue a career in the film industry. While at MDC, he and fellow FFI participant Gabrielle Ibanez, produced a video for MDC North Student Government as their entry for the college Student Government Association competition. The video won first place among all other entries from colleges throughout the country. Currently, Dylan is working per diem for the CBS Televisions Stations in Miami as camera operator for the sales production team and is also employed with iZoom Productions as Director of Photography and Graphic Designer. Dylan enjoys working in the ‘real world’ while pursuing his education. The combinations of work experience and college education are giving him a valuable perspective on the entertainment industry and great insight for his future career.


FFI has been given the opportunity to bring our CINEMA participants to School of Entertainment & Design Technology (SEDT) at Miami Dade College, North Campus on May 21st 2014 for the 2013-2014 CINEMA Awards and Screenings. This is a great way to bring all of the students together and have them meet each other and also have them watch the entire student films produced this year through FFI’s film program. In addition to the event, the students will be given a personal tour of the new state of the art music/film studio on campus.


FFI is always seeking financial and in-kind support. In the event that you would like to donate dollars (or maybe just some sense!) please click HERE or contact the FFI office directly and speak with Stephanie.


Sponsored in part by the State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs and the Florida Council on Arts and Culture, and with the support of the Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs and the Cultural Affairs Council, the Miami-Dade County Mayor and Board of County Commissioners, The Children’s Trust, is a dedicated source of revenue established by voter referendum to improve the lives of children and families in Miami-Dade County, Miami Dade College North Campus, School of Entertainment & Design Technology (SEDT), Garnet Productions, Coral Gables Art Cinema, VideoLab Solutions, and Miami-Dade County Public Schools.

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