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Documentary delves into UVMtv’s history, challenges and sense of family

June 8, 2016

The first UVMtv screen flickered into existence in the late 1990s, a prehistoric era in which students lacked the most basic video necessities. There was no Netflix. No YouTube. Video streaming was the stuff of science fiction. The mere act of watching a second-run movie required a perilous journey through snow and ice to Blockbuster Video, where students could pool their money to rent a $3 film, provided they returned it the next day—lest they face dreaded late fees with each passing day.

UVMtv saved the day, delivering a constant stream of nearly new movies to every television in the residence halls. Over time, the students who chose these movies began making their own shows: news, comedies, dating shows and some pretty psychedelic fare, too.

A new UVMtv mini-doc sheds light on the struggles those students have faced in the years since. UVMtv’s current technical director, Carolyn Pedro, produced the 11-minute film after interviewing a decade’s worth of UVMtv members. The result is a trip through those years when UVMtv sought a studio home on the University of Vermont campus—bouncing from Billings Hall to Coolidge Hall to the Davis Center and more—but mostly Pedro tells a story of how students found their college family on both sides of the camera.

Pedro shared what is was like making the documentary:

I wanted to make the video because I saw how much enthusiasm the members have for the club and the hard work that gets put into it. Unfortunately, the club doesn’t get the recognition it deserves and I wanted to highlight those issues with a documentary.

UVMtv technical director Carolyn Pedro (far left), a junior majoring in film and television studies, says she made the documentary to help viewers understand the passion of the organization’s members. Pedro stands with the rest of UVMtv’s 2016-2017 executive board, who are (from left) Mary O’Toole, Callie Mae Bowen, Lilly Dukich and Yuwei Zhu.

UVMtv technical director Carolyn Pedro (far left), a junior majoring in film and television studies, says she made the documentary to help viewers understand the passion of the organization’s members. Pedro stands with the rest of UVMtv’s 2016-2017 executive board, who are (from left) Mary O’Toole, Callie Mae Bowen, Lilly Dukich and Yuwei Zhu.

Ultimately I wanted to represent UVMtv in a way that shows how much passion is devoted to it by current and previous members. I want those who watch it to realize the dedication its members have to the organization and maybe even get some more recognition for the organization.

I learned how strong its community is. In some ways the organization has really impacted everyone who has been involved. In a short few weeks of starting this documentary I received an overwhelming amount of support from previous and current members. Regardless how many conflicts the club has faced the enthusiasm and devotion for the club has always been alive since the beginning. Everyone is so supportive of what the club has and can accomplish.

 

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