DKA Prepares for Halloween Film Festival


Steven Spielberg, George Lucas, Julie Andrews, and Alfred Hitchcock are all alumni of the cinema fraternity, Delta Kappa Alpha. Established in 2013, the fraternity’s chapter on campus consists of 15 people who host two major events each year, the Halloween Film Festival and the Moon Dance Student Film Festival.

For this year’s Halloween Film Festival, anyone can submit a Halloween themed five-minute short film. The festival will be held on Oct. 28, and people will be able to view the films. There will also be a separate category for freshman submissions for those new to filmmaking. Applicants can submit their films in a folder within the student server by Oct. 24. At the Halloween Festival, the fraternity will incorporate some of UT’s most famous ghost stories: the Man in the Brown Suit and the Woman in the Red Dress.

“We want to incorporate the ghost stories as a way to make the festival more UT-oriented and to contribute to the scary side of the festival,” the chapter’s Cinematic Affairs Chair, international and cultural studies major,  sophomore Allie Harrington said. “We will also have some Halloween themed snacks for the attendees to enjoy as they watch all the submitted films.”

Delta Kappa Alpha will also collaborate with the Film Society with the Moon Dance Student Film Festival again this Spring.

Similar to the Halloween Festival, for the Moon Dance Student Film Festival there are open film submissions. Once all of the films have been submitted, they are then judged by undisclosed judges for various categories, just like an actual film festival. More information on the Moon Dance Student Film Festival and deadlines for film submissions will be available by next semester. The categories include comedy, drama, documentary, and best picture.

Cannon sponsored last year’s Moon Dance Student Film Festival, and the winner of the Best Overall Picture/Cannon Educational Award, Emma Rockas, who graduated last May, received a Canon C100. Rockas is currently a self-employed filmmaker and photographer and still lives in Tampa.

Rockas’ film, about a Cuban Dracula going back to Cuba to find and kill Castro won for its originality and creative use of lighting, colors, camera angles and suspense, according to senior film and media arts major, Hisham Moll who is the production chair for UT’s Delta Kappa Alpha chapter.

Junior film and media arts major Tim Cross is currently working on his production for the contest.

“Our film is called Ashes to Ashes and it’s a horror movie that takes place in a small office after everyone has left,” Cross said. “There’s a man named Don who works in the office after hours and is basically haunted by the woman.”

Working on the film along with Cross are Dennisha Besecker, Summer Himmelberger, David Laverty, Allie Harrington, Will Campanella, Brent Weiner, Merra Lakshmanan, and Kellie Etling.

“I am excited about teaching students about all that a production entails,” Cross said. “I also want to teach them about collaboration and working as a team.”

Cross’ film “Ashes to Ashes” will be one of the multiple films at the festival later this month.

Like the festivals, the fraternity itself is open and welcoming to anyone with an interest in movies and film regardless of their major, gender or if they are an undergraduate or graduate student.

Moll is the last of the founding members of the Delta Kappa Alpha chapter at UT to graduate.

“It’s amazing to see how it’s grown and it makes me so happy,” said Moll. “I can’t wait to see what Delta Kappa Alpha at UT is like in 10 years.”

Leah Foreman can be reached at

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