Student Spotlight: Jacques Cote
Basalt High School Junior Jacques Cote enjoys writing and drawing, but his chief passion – for which he received a 5Point Dream Project Grant – is film. He recently sat down with the Post Independent to talk about what he did with it and what’s next.
Post Independent: What got you interested in videography?
Jaques Cote: It’s just something I’ve always wanted to do. I like the visual aspect for telling a story. It just has a great connection with the audience because the characters don’t have to say everything with words. I also really like the social aspect. It’s a group project. Even if you have your one vision, you’re going to be collaborating with a bunch of other people. Since I was a little kid I wanted to be a director or a screenwriter. In elementary school I was making films with my friends, though not as seriously as I am now with the grant from 5Point. I used to shoot with my phone a lot; now I have a DSLR. It’s a real morale booster to look at the final product and have it be that much more professional.
PI: What was it you hoped to get out of it?
JC: I wanted to really raise the quality. There was a dramatic, serious short film in my head that shows high school from a student’s perspective. Sometimes it seems like it doesn’t really help you bring out your passion. It’s just the same thing every day, and if you can’t get your grades on paper you’re dismissed as not smart.
PI: So is it a documentary?
JC: Fiction. I’m definitely way more passionate about fiction. I’m a creative person, so I wanted to show it through a narrative. It chronicles a kid having trouble who can’t get his grades up and can’t find help. He has social anxiety, so he has no friends or anything. His best friend is his goldfish, and what he really wants to do is draw. He just can’t find a place for that passion in the curriculum.
PI: Who plays him?
JC: I do. After I wrote the screenplay, it was hard to find kids to play a dramatic role. You have an idea in your head, and if you want to be able to show that, you should be able to act yourself. When you’re making home films with no money, you’re definitely going to be playing the characters. I would get someone willing to help and give them the rundown of what I wanted the camera to do.
PI: Is this something you plan to pursue in the long run?
JC: Definitely. I want to do this for the rest of my life. It’s just getting there. I want to go to either a film college or major in film at a university and just go from there.