COLUMBIA — On Sunday, a crowd of about 40 adults and children bundled up and volunteered to film a series of vignettes at Stephens Lake Park for the True/False Film Festival.
"OK ... quiet please! OK, this is a go. And ... action!" shouted director Nathan Truesdell.
The True/False Film Festival is scheduled for Feb. 26 through March 1. For more information or to buy passes, go to truefalse.org.
Three cameramen in a crane-lift slowly ascended upward. Everyone on the ground, except for Winston, a black Labrador, stared into the sky. The group couldn't see it, but they were pretending to stare at a flying boat.
"Cut!" Truesdell said, and everyone relaxed.
The vignettes will be shown before the True/False Film Festival's film screenings on Feb. 27, Feb. 28 and March 1. Arable Entertainment, part of Pure Marketing and Media, provided the camera and did the filming on volunteer basis. The company is based in Columbia and has produced television commercials and short-form documentaries for hospitals, and is now expanding into music videos and feature films. Les Bourgeois Vineyards provided the small boat that will appear in some shots.
David Wilson, co-founder and co-director of the festival, said the volunteer turnout for the shoot was by far the biggest he's seen. The vignettes are produced on a "very tiny budget," he said. Filming also took place on Saturday, Wilson said, but Sunday's warmer temperatures meant things went more smoothly.
Kim Sherman, a film producer with Pure Marketing and Media, said this was the first time her company has done volunteer work for the community, but she hopes they can do it again.
"We love Columbia and the different film scene here," Sherman said. "It's a very sincere community. People are smart and eager to help. It's very heartfelt."
Sherman said the flying boat concept follows the festival's poster and Web site artwork, which was designed by David Friesen of Ninth Street Video.
Jeff Kuntz, 29, volunteered his time and spent most of the day blowing up balloons for the shoot. Kuntz said he enjoyed the opportunity to help out with a valuable project and contribute to the community.
"And get a free pass to the film festival," Kuntz said with a grin.
Cheryl Metz, 30, just moved to Columbia last fall. She heard about the shoot through a friend.
"I have a degree in theater, so this is right up my alley," she said.
Debi Bell is a fourth-year volunteer for the festival. She brought her son James, 6, to the shoot. Initially she was a little worried he wouldn't want to go, but James' enthusiasm proved her doubts wrong.
"I know what my favorite part is," James said. "Pulling the boat up the hill, and riding it down!"