Student film in top 20 of LA Film Prize competition



Sept. 17, 2013

CONTACT: JARROD BECK, (318) 884-1160;



By Callie Sterling

College of Fine Arts and Communication Media Office

CONWAY — The feature film Elysian Equation is among the top 20 films in the LA Film Prize competition.

The final round of the competition will be held at Festival Central, Capri Theater, Central Artstation and Robinson Film Center in Shreveport Oct. 3-5.

Elysian Equation was directed by Jarrod Beck, a student in the University of Central Arkansas’s graduate program in digital filmmaking, and Eric White, a recent MFA graduate of the program.

“The film is about an obsessed scientist who works to get a mysterious machine to activate,” Beck said. “In his obsession, he refuses to listen to reason from his former mentor and chooses his own fate.”

The short film competed against nearly 80 other shorts from across the United States, many made by professionals. Elysian Equation was chosen for the final round of the competition.

The grand prize is $50,000. Every film selected in the top 20 will win $500. In addition to the cash prize, the top 20 will be screened in front of a large audience.

To enter the LA Film Prize competition, Elysian Equation was required to be filmed in northwest Louisiana.

“Most films were not from the Shreveport area,” Beck said. “They were from across the U.S., some coming from as far as California to shoot their films.”

“We are very proud of the film we have put together. It was a difficult production; we shot the whole thing in just two days with a very small crew, but the final film made it all worthwhile. The film is in the final stages of postproduction, and we are very pleased with the way it has turned out.”

The film stars Jason Willey and Kenn Woodard.

The producer of the film is Robin Sparks, an undergraduate in UCA’s digital filmmaking program. Other UCA film crew members include Trenton Mynatt, Rachel McGee and Ben Ellis.  Mynatt has a degree from UCA in digital film, McGee and Ellis are current digital film undergraduates at UCA.

The winners will be selected by the audience as well as a national panel of industry judges.

According to the LA Film Prize website, the audience vote will account for 50 percent of the total, and audience members must see all 20 films to cast their ballot.

The winner will be announced Oct. 6.

Tickets for the screening are $20 for general admission and may be purchased online at

For more information, visit or or contact Beck at (318) 884-1160 or

The UCA College of Fine Arts and Communication includes the Departments of Art, Communication, Mass Communication and Theatre, Music and Writing. The college’s primary mission is the preparation of the next generation of artists, educators and communicators. For more information about CFAC, visit or call (501) 450-3293.