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Lander Student Takes First Place – Again – for Short Film

Chaz Giles and Hannah Gallant
Lander University senior Chaz Giles and sophomore Hannah Gallant at the 2018 Lander Film Festival Awards. Giles' film "Amore Mio Per La Cena," starring Gallant, recently took top honors in the first annual College Broadcasters, Inc., Visual Media Festival in Seattle, Washington. Photo by Deb Nygro

It wasn't quite enough for Chaz Giles to win twice for the same entry in Lander University's 2018 spring Film Festival.

This autumn, the Lander senior took first place again for his short film "Amore Mio Per La Cena" in the first annual College Broadcasters, Inc., Visual Media Festival in Seattle, Washington.

"CBI is top tier when it comes to college media exhibition and competition," said Paul Crutcher, a broadcast and emerging media specialist at Lander. "And Chaz was competing against student films from some of the top schools in the country."

All film entries were screened in October at the annual CBI National Student Electronic Media Convention held last month the first annual CBI Visual Media Festival in Seattle, Washington.

"I still can't believe that I won," said Giles, a mass communications major. "For the last two years I've gone to the conference, and have been present for the awards ceremonies, but I've never submitted anything to be judged."

Giles added that he only did so this time at the urging of Lander Professor Cory Carpenter.

"But I didn't expect much to come from it," he said. "I've made friends with media students all over the country through CBI, and I know how talented they all are."

"Amore" placed first in Lander's College Division for Best Director, and again in the Writer's Choice Award, which spanned across all divisions.

Now that it's been to the winner's circle a third time, Giles said he hopes it will further fuel his ambition to be a stage actor.

"I don't plan to pursue video work in my career after I graduate in December," he said. "I already have a job lined up performing, and plan to continue pursuit of a career in theatre and vocal performance."