At 21, Motion Picture major Travis Duncan never thought he’d be screening his own movie at the Cannes Film Festival in France, much less networking with famous directors and pitching another movie he produced. But last spring, Duncan did just that, and he wants other UM students to know they can, too.
Duncan was accepted into “Creative Minds In Cannes” an L.A.-based film program that provides young filmmakers an opportunity to showcase their work and connect with companies that can launch their careers. Since 2004, Creative Minds has brought over 400 students to film festivals around the world, set up over 200 internships, and produced over 50 films.
“My experience in Cannes was eye-opening,” said Duncan, a student in UM’s School of Communication from Dallas. “I immersed myself in the marketplace and witnessed the inner-workings of how deals are made in the film industry. Now I feel confident I have the right approach to bring my films to any market in the future.”
The Creative Minds Group offers three programs for students, including the "The Filmmakers Institute," where each participant creates a 5-minute short film in seven days that is screened and submitted for competition at Cannes. Duncan's film, Don’t be a Dick, won first place in the competition. Participants also attend daily networking happy hours, filmmaker workshops and Cinema Master Classes (hosted by industry icons like Quentin Tarantino, Martin Scorsese, and Sydney Pollack).
To apply for the program, students fill out an application online at http://www.thecreativemindgroup.com. If accepted, the program covers housing and film festival admission during its two-week run. Applications are due Nov. 18 (for early decision) and January 20, 2012 (for general admission).
In Cannes, Duncan promoted and sold the rights to distribute Kaliedecorp, a dark comedy about a young man who interns for the world's first supernatural corporation. Co-produced by Duncan and directed by Brad Klipfel, a 2010 UM graduate, the film also screened at Cannes. It was originally created as a class project for the University of Miami Motion Picture Department and won "Best Film" at UM's 2010 Canes Film Festival.
Duncan said he was also fortunate to meet one of his inspirations, Michel Gondry, the director of Eternal Sunshine of The Spotless Mind, at Cannes and made connections that have led to collaborative projects already in motion with professionals in L.A., Washington D.C, Paris, and London.
Now a student ambassador for The Creative Minds Group, he is encouraging others to submit their talents to the program.
“Students should not miss out on any opportunity to further launch their careers. Applying to Creative Minds in Cannes gives them the opportunity to establish the connections they need to get their foot in the door, whether they are interested in film, media management, journalism, entertainment law, music, and more,” Duncan said.
*To apply for Creative Minds in Cannes, go to www.thecreativemindgroup.com or contact for more information..
*View Duncan’s award-winning film here: