Use smartphones to shoot movies

Smartphone phones can now be used by Pacific Islanders to shoot movies to tell their stories, says award-winning Papua New Guinean film-maker Llane Munau.

Commenting on the recent launching of a film competition by Centre for Samoan Studies (C.S.S.) at the National University of Samoa (N.U.S.), the film-maker said the evolution of mobile phone technology now enables Pacific Islanders to shoot their own movies without the need to buy expensive cinematography equipment.

Llane said she is assisting the C.S.S. with the preparatory work for its inaugural film competition and she looks forward to working with the university – under a long-term arrangement – to teach its students the art of film making.

“I was telling them (C.S.S.) how you can now use your IPhone or android phone to do films and to do short movies. You do not really need to buy expensive equipment, especially if you need to get the story out there,” she said, in an interview with Samoa Observer.

Pointing to her smartphone, she said: “I have used this, now I have this Samsung S8 Plus so I use it now to shoot documentaries and shooting for myself.”

But using the right technique can be the difference between shooting an ordinary video and getting content that immediately has an impact on your audience according to Llane.

“The thing is that everybody can shoot but there is a technique in how you tell the story and I think with that, I would want to share the knowledge. You can get the story but there is always a technique in how you present your story.”

Seuli Vaifou Temese, the head of the C.S.S. and senior lecturer at the N.U.S., said she saw a lot of value in the work of the region’s film-makers such as Llane, and the university is keen to reach out in order to give their students exposure to that level of expertise.

When Llane was asked about the potential of a partnership between PNG institutions and experts such as herself and the N.U.S., she said she supports the idea and looks forward to further collaboration and partnerships with the university.

Seuli and Llane were part of a project titled ‘Exploring Participatory Film-Making as a Development Method to address Gender Inequality in the Pacific’. It brought together researchers in anthropology, film studies and legal studies and led to the convening of a series of workshops and networking events in the U.K., European Union and the Pacific region. The collaboration was led by the University of St Andrews in the United Kingdom, the PNG National Research Institute and the N.U.S.

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