Student Voice: Commuting to Campus

Gaius Straka, Reporter — Anthony DeVera, Photographer

What can ACC do to improve your commute?

FREDRICK JOHNSON — The parking spaces should be bigger. Even when you have a compact like I do, if one person parks off, it can mess up the whole row.
VICTORIA CERVANTES — Bus stop areas could be closed off for shade. Right now it’s cold, so a shelter.
BRITTANY OKORIE — More space for visitors. There’s tons of space for students. For visitors, there’s not enough space for parking.
JOANN FIELDS — Students should be able to park up closer. It looks like all of the teachers get the close spots and then we’re all rushing to find a spot. There’s really not enough room, unless you’re parking far away.

On the Record: Mike Scannell

Story by Jessica Youssefi, Reporter
Joseph Lee, Photo Editor

Mike Scannell, editor and co producer of the award-winning documentary “Six Man, Texas,” has been with Austin Community College for more than 20 years. Scannell started with ACC as a student and is now a professor in the Radio, Television, Film department. Recently, one of his scripts was purchased by Sony Pictures Entertainment, Inc. Scannell spoke to Accent about his experience as a filmmaker.

ACCENT: Is Texas a good place to make films?

SCANNELL: It’s great, especially for independent filmmakers because you can make films here for practically nothing. You have access to permits, people and a low-budget crew. A lot of bigger-budget Hollywood films don’t shoot here because the tax incentives are not there. They go to Louisiana, Canada or New Mexico. That’s part of why I transitioned to screenwriting, so I could tell a bigger story, but didn’t have to come up with a bunch of money.

ACCENT: “Six Man, Texas,” which you edited and co produced, won at the 2008 Santa Fe Film Festival. Tell us about the film.

SCANNELL: A guy gave me a box of tapes with these small-town football games and said, “Hey can we make a movie out of this?” I took it on because I thought it might help me with my screenwriting — trying to find a structure for a story out of all these pieces. I loved doing it, but I don’t think I will ever do it again. At least as far as editing. It took three years of time and was frustrating. (laughing)

ACCENT: What advice do you have for students trying to make a name for themselves in the film industry?

SCANNELL: Figure out where your talent lies and what you like. Whether it’s directing, writing, camera or sound, focus on honing that craft. Do as much work as possible.

ACCENT: Tell us about your project which was picked up by Sony.

SCANNELL: It’s a horror film called “Scarecrow.” We took a very high concept idea that’s very clean and straightforward — being terrorized out in the middle of nowhere and you can’t get away — but then twisted it and made it fresh.

ACCENT: What is the next step with the film?

SCANNELL: Sony hired me to do a polish on the script and now they are talking about shooting at the end of summer.

ACCENT: When did you realize film was a passion of yours?

SCANNELL: Film has always been a passion of mine, even as a little kid. My friends would come over and we would watch all kinds of movies. I never really knew it was an option as a career until I got to ACC.

ACCENT:What movies have influenced your filmmaking?

SCANNELL: My main influence would probably be films of the 60s and 70s and some from the 80s. My favorite movie is “Taxi Driver.” Martin Scorsese, Stanley Kubrick, those types of directors were a big influence on me. But I get inspired by going to film festivals, short films and student projects.

Boards Members Settle In

Chloe Kwak, Reporter

New ACC board of trustees members Mark Williams and Gigi Edwards Bryant have had several months to settle into their new roles.

“It’s an exciting time to be in the community college world,” Williams, a University of Texas graduate, said.

Gigi Edwards Bryant is a sixth generation Austinite.

“I am most excited about the fact that we all have a shared mission for the college, students, staff and education. Everyone has great passion,” Bryant said.

Williams was elected to Place 1 in the Novemeber 2014 elections, and Bryant was elected to Place 2 in a runoff election in December 2014 elections.

Both trustees’ terms end in 2020.