Student’s film premieres at Woodstock Film Fest

When Holy Child student Augusta “Gus” Pendergast of Greenwich agreed to brainstorm story ideas with a friend last year, she had no idea the film they’d make would end up premiering at the Woodstock Film Festival (WFF).

Fast becoming a phenomenon in the independent film world, the Woodstock Film Festival, whch took place in October, is a premiere annual event for the Hudson Valley. The festival screened 130 films this year with a variety of filmmakers, actors and film industry professionals heading to the Woodstock, N.Y., area. It is now considered a destination for anyone seeking independent cinema.

Gus’ six-minute short film, Getting Through was made with director and co-writer Simon Usdan, a student at Ethical Cultural Fieldston School in New York City. It depicts the struggles of a young girl who copes with the loss of her father on 9/11 through music.

“The goal of this film is to show viewers that hope can be found even in the darkest of times,” Gus said. “Everyone deals with loss in different ways. Whether it is through music, by talking, or writing, there are ways to find inner peace, solace and ultimately acceptance when faced with loss.”

Unnerved, at first, by the idea of co-writing and starring in the film, Gus said she’s glad she took part in the project.

“I was unsure at first because I had never been involved with a film project, but I decided to do it because it would be something new, interesting and challenging,” she said. “It’s amazing to see what we wrote come to life on the screen.”

Gus, who entered Holy Child in the fifth grade, serves as president of the junior class, is a member of the lacrosse team and is active in the school’s theater productions.

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