The Best of Spotlight Week 2023

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The 4th Annual Spotlight Week celebration and Spotlight Awards were a huge success! The annual event showcased some of the biggest names in the entertainment and tech space. Google, Sony, PRG, and many other companies joined The L.A. Film School during Spotlight Week to host live gear demos and virtual panels for students and alumni. Read on for the top moments of Spotlight Week 2023 and our Spotlight Awards Ceremony!

Breaking Down the Sound of Metal

Oscar-winning Sound Mixer and L.A. Film School alum Phillip Bladh sat down with live and virtual audiences to discuss the many facets of being a successful Sound Mixer. From tips to landing jobs, to the ins and outs of life on set, to how it felt winning his first Oscar, and more, Phillip gave students a peek behind the curtain of building a successful Hollywood career.

Rewatch Phillip’s talk here.

Studio Tips 101

Two award-winning engineers and L.A. Film School alums joined L.A. Recording School Instructor Joel Numa for a discussion about their studio careers. Khalid Phillippe and GRAMMY® award winner Henrique Andrade offered invaluable insight for any student aiming to build a career in the studio through their practical tips, tricks, and stories about the successes and challenges that helped get these alums where they are today.

Rewatch the panel here.

Golden Thesis Film Festival

The Los Angeles Film School’s 3rd Golden Thesis Film Festival “Spotlight Movie Night” was a unique showcase original student short films and student thesis projects. The festival took special note of films with a writer, producer, director, cast, or theme of a diverse voice and boasted work from creatives of various backgrounds and cultures. A total of 16 student and alumni films were screened at the festival.

Spotlight Inductee Paquita Hughes took the stage during intermission for an interview in which she spoke about getting helpful feedback as a new filmmaker, the importance of networking, co-founding the Ananse Cinema International Film Festival, and her work on Bel-Air, Perry Mason, Little Fires Everywhere, and more.

Stay tuned for the next Golden Thesis Film Festival Event streaming live in August 2023!

Rewatch the festival here.

Gear Expo

The Gear Expo is always one of our most popular Spotlight Week events, and this year’s 4th annual Gear Expo was no exception! Students got an inside look at prominent companies’ latest tech and software and got to see live interactive demos from Sony, Kino Flo, PRG, and many more.

In addition to witnessing new tech for themselves, students also had the opportunity to meet Oscar®-winner and Spotlight Inductee Phillip Bladh and get their photo with a real Oscar® trophy.

The Gear Expo closed with a huge giveaway for current students and alumni. The prize list included Wacom tablets, VR headsets, B&H and Amazon gift cards, monitors, and Sony cameras, and more!

Read about the winners!

Rooftop Bash

The rooftop parking lot was transformed into the ultimate hang out spot for The L.A. Film School Rooftop Bash! Students took the opportunity to wind down after finals, connect with other students, and soak up the summer vibes with games, arts and crafts stations, food trucks, and a live DJ.

PRG: This is the Way: Our Journey Navigating Real-Time Pre-Viz on Set

In this student-exclusive event, virtual production services provider PRG gave students a live demo of some of the technologies they provide on set such as the immersive, extended reality environment, xR Stage, the Ncam® real-time camera tracking system, and the alternative green-screen workflow Enhanced Environments. An in-depth Q&A taught students about the magic of blending live action and CG content, no matter the environment or gear.

Industry Connexion

Industry Connexion was a red carpet affair that showcased accomplished Latino industry professionals, their journeys, and their remarkable successes. Featured panelists included host Letty Peniche (Power 106), Emilio Rivera (Sons of Anarchy, Mayans MC, Flamin’ Hot), Julio Macias (On My Block, Selena), Anthony Bless (Ruthless, Shooter) and more.

Industry Connexion is a recurring quarterly event series that aims to highlight the contributions of Latinos in the entertainment industry and their influence on American culture. Despite their significant contributions, Latinos remain the most underrepresented group in Hollywood.

Storytelling with YouTube: A Google Panel

Google/YouTube insiders leveled-up students’ storytelling game with tips for creating content that gets creatives noticed on YouTube. Students had the opportunity to ask questions about everything from new and upcoming YouTube features to how to approach landing a job at Google, and more!

4th Annual Spotlight Awards

The main event, our Spotlight Awards Ceremony, broadcasted live from the Ivar Theatre in Hollywood, CA. The ceremony honored the Class of 2023, four talented alumni, who were inducted into the Spotlight Academy. On Thursday, June 29, Jeff Barnes, Paquita Hughes, Phillip Bladh, and Samantha Wilkins officially became members of the 2023 Spotlight Academy.

Watch the entire show here!

Spotlight Week | Student Winners

Spotlight Week Sticker Challenge Winners

There were plenty of opportunities throughout Spotlight Week for Students to win cool prizes and recognition! Here are a few of our Spotlight Week student winners:

Spotlight Week didn’t just give students a chance to hear from professionals. It also gave students a chance to flex their abilities like our Graphic Design students did for our Spotlight Week Sticker Challenge.

Graphic Design students were asked to create Spotlight Week stickers aligned with this year’s Spotlight Awards theme. If you were on campus, you might have gotten a chance to pick up one of these student-designed stickers!

Congratulations to Jennifer Yang and Brandyn Argetsinger for winning the Spotlight Week Sticker Challenge with their inspired designs!

Selfie Station Winners

Students had a chance to win tickets to the Spotlight Awards ceremony by posting selfies from one of two Spotlight-themed selfie stations erected in The L.A. Film School Brian Lobby and The L.A. Recording School!

Congratulations to Nylah Abram for winning this year’s Spotlight Selfie Giveaway!

Gear Expo Winners

The Gear Expo concluded with a huge giveaway for students and alumni. Congratulations to all of our winners!

  • Gabriel Soto – Wacom tablet
  • Nylah Abram – Spotlight Display Winner (replace)
  • Stephen Frick – Wacom tablet
  • Jayme Mavar – T.V. Monitor
  • Nimbus Barry – Ear pods
  • Julio Flores – VR headset
  • Talvin Wells – Wacom tablet
  • Zachary Patterson – Wacom tablet
  • Tristan Penrod – $100 B&H gift card
  • Jayme Mavar – TV Monitor
  • Nimbus Barry – Ear pods
  • Nik Oekerman – Sony Camera
  • George Obeng-Ouro – Sony Camera
  • Juan Velasquez – Lighting kit
  • Natasha Ingeram – $25 Amazon gift card
  • Mia Parham – $25 Amazon gift card
  • Amita Nasir – $25 Amazon gift card
  • Donya Sohm – $25 Amazon gift card
  • Jesus Raya – $25 Amazon gift card
  • Anthony Williams – $25 Amazon gift card