The 48 Hour Film Project hits the ground running in Asheville

Team UNCA gets started filming its fantasy-based submission for the 2015 48 Hour Film Project. Photo by Amber McGilvary

The 2015 48 Hour Film Project has arrived in Asheville.

The project, produced in Asheville by Bruce Sales, is a weekend-long film event in which teams have 48 hours to write, cast, film and edit a four-to-seven-minute film. Each film must be of a particular genre, which is drawn from a hat at the project kickoff. All films must include three elements that specified by the project coordinators — a prop, a character and a line of dialogue.

Twenty-five teams gathered at Asheville Pizza and Brewing Company on Coxe Avenue yesterday, June 19, at 6:30 p.m., to begin their adventures in filmmaking. By 7 p.m. all teams were on their way with their assigned genres, which ranged from dark comedy to musical to fantasy.

This year’s three required elements are a prop vase, a hairdresser named Andrew or Adriana Elwood, and a dialogue line “What! I can’t believe it!” or, alternately, “What! I cannot believe it!.”

“The big question is usually: Can films made in only 48 hours be watchable?” said Bruce Sales, producer of Asheville’s 48 Hour Film Project. “The answer from Asheville audiences — a resounding yes.”

Team UNCA, a returning team with several years’ experience, drew the fantasy genre and immediately began the brainstorming and writing process, and then proceeded to work late into the night completing their script.

At 7 a.m. today, team members were on location at Zealandia Castle to begin filming their story of about the Three Fates, characters on which their fantasy film seems to be based. Weather and lighting were on their side in the morning, but as afternoon approached, rain loomed and they moved quickly to complete the rest of the outdoor shots.

As this is being written early Saturday afternoon, filming is in full swing at a second location. The team seems completely immersed in the 48-hour experience.

At various locations across Asheville, 24 other teams are in the process of capturing their stories, each told in their assigned genre. With a deadline of 6:30 p.m. Sunday night, it will be a long process with little sleep for most participants.

Public screenings of all submitted films will begin Monday, June 22, at Asheville Pizza and Brewing Company on Merrimon Avenue, and continue Tuesday and Wednesday evenings until all this year’s submissions have been shown.

The 48 Hour Film Project, started in 2001, is currently staged in 130 cities worldwide on different weekends each year, with more than 60,000 people racing to complete their short films.

Get live coverage of Team UNCA and Asheville’s 48 Hour Film Project as they unfold by following hashtag #48HFP on Twitter, or watch the Twitter feed on’s homepage.

About Amber McGilva
Graduate of UNCA 2015 in Mass Communication.

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