High school, college students create summer film

COAST CITIES — A group of talented high school and college students, a $400 budget and a young, local director with a dream have been the only elements necessary to generate and construct a feature film this summer.
This film was written, produced and directed by 16-year-old Encinitas resident Matt Thompson with the help of cast and crew members who voluntarily took on the hard work of making a movie.
“The Medallion of Man” is a story that combines the humor of a teenage boy who finds a powerful medallion, and the classic message of simply being one’s self in order to find true love.
“The Medallion of Man” premieres at noon Aug. 15 at La Paloma Theater, 471 S. Coast Highway 101, Encinitas. Admission is free; donations are accepted.
Marly Hall, a college freshman at San Francisco State University majoring in costume design, had the opportunity to form and direct the costume department for the movie. Hall is not only the woman behind the wardrobe, but the lead actress in the film as well.
A sophomore at Gonzaga University, Nick Smoldon, composed original scores for the movie.
A star actor in the theater department of Cathedral Catholic High School, Michael Mahady, showcased his acting skills for the first time in front of the camera. As the lead in the movie, Mahady noticed the considerable difference between acting on a set and on a stage.
“When I was young my dad and I would watch movies almost all day long,” says Thompson, a junior at Cathedral Catholic High School, “Watching so many movies led me to realize how much of an impact they had on my life; in the stories they displayed and in the lessons they told.”
Before the brainstorming of “The Medallion of Man,” Thompson wrote several scripts for short films and always preferred to make movies for school assignments and scholarship competitions.
“Movie making is the most collaborative form of art there is,” said Ryan Andrzejewski, executive producer and multimedia teacher at Cathedral Catholic High School.
Andrzejewski was also a supervisor and featured actor in the film and adds that Thompson, “is the perfect person for that job. He is a leader and a fantastic young creative force surrounded by capable and exciting crew and talent.”

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