This past weekend marked the start and finish of the first annual Reel Change Film Frenzy, in which ten teams of filmmakers were partnered with ten different nonprofits and tasked with writing, producing, shooting, and editing a short film in under 48 hours. Last Friday at high noon, Alamo Drafthouse Community Relations Coordinator Amy Averett fired a starter pistol into the air outside of the Alamo Drafthouse South Lamar, helping us off the Film Frenzy in style and in just two days our teams turned up in different states of exhaustion, final cuts in hand. These talented guys and gals had very different filming experiences. From happy hours with the Texas Food & Wind Foundation, to practices with the Texas Rollergirls, to interviews with refugees with the Multicultural Refugee Center, our teams produced films that were diverse and entertaining.

All of the films were of amazing quality, especially considering that the film-makers had a two day time limit, but alas there could only be so many winners. Our audience favorite was Team “UN” and The Whole Planet Foundation’s Clarity, which satirizes the “Whole Foods Stereotype” (seriously, watch the movie and you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about) while highlighting the good things that The Whole Planet Foundation does. The winner as picked by our judges was COREageous and Austin Bat Cave’s A Unique Look at Austin Bat Cave, a film that follows two of the Austin Bat Cave’s clients and in doing so shows the necessity of the organization as a whole.

Even though we have two winners, our competition still isn’t quite over. Our friends at Maximum Positive have created a voting system which allows those of us who were unable to attend the screening to vote online. All you have to do is watch the videos here and then cast your vote here. We would like to thank everyone who came out to the screening on Sunday, Amy Averett and everyone at the Alamo Drafthouse, and especially our nonprofits and film-makers for making this event possible. This was our first attempt at this and it was a resounding success, and it wouldn’t have been possible without you.