De Anza students’ work showcased at Reikes Film Festival


Eilon Presman

Courtesy photos from Eilon Presman’s film about two brothers navigating through the ongoing Russo-Ukrainian war.

Connor Blum, Photography Editor

De Anza College film students Eilon Presman, 19, film production major, and Ray Teoh, 19, film/TV production major, had their creations highlighted at the Reikes Film Festival on Feb. 5.

Presman is currently enrolled in De Anza’s Introduction to directing class and Teoh is taking Beginning 16mm motion picture production. 

Presman’s film is about two brothers who must navigate through the ongoing Russo-Ukrainian war, having to overcome torn landscapes to escape enemy forces. Presman said he was inspired by his stepmother’s activism.

“My stepmother recently flew over to Europe to help Ukrainian refugees,” Presman said. “The stories that she came back with were so powerful, which made me think it would be a sin not to share them with the world.” 

Presman worked on this project with the help from his teacher assistant Brad Meyer, who assisted him with the sound production when the film was in its post-production stage. 

“I was the writer, director and actor in the film. Initially, I didn’t want to put on so many hats, however my little brother was the main character, therefore I felt he would be most comfortable with me,” Presman said. “As the writer and director, I had to sit down at my desk day and night to think of the best way to tell this story.” 

Teoh is another example of an up-and-coming creator as his recent film called, “Vinyl,” was also showcased at the Reikes Film Festival.

“The film covers an unexpected visit interrupting the protagonist’s grief,” Teoh said. “She then sets on a journey hopping through eras to meet her deceased partner one last time.”

Teoh explained how his current education at De Anza related to the production of his film.

“Knowing that we were going to shoot something on 16mm film, I knew it would look nice, thanks to the aesthetic natural look of the film grains,” Teoh said. “Then I started to draw inspiration from production design and continued writing the story.”

Teoh was inspired by his fellow classmates and his instructor, Ms. Silveria, who gave support and coaching throughout the creation of the film. 

Silveria said that in general, films are not easy to create, especially under pandemic conditions and class limitations. 

“Despite many setbacks, Ray and his department heads successfully shot ‘Vinyl’ on 16mm film in my F/TV 22 Beginning 16mm Motion Picture Production course – which De Anza Film & Television students haven’t had the chance to do since before the pandemic,” Silveria said. “Also, to be noted, we are one of very few film programs that still offer this course as part of the curriculum.”

Silveria said students should take interest in or attempt production because “learning the tools of filmmaking is empowering – especially if you have a story to tell.”