View the visual recap in the photo gallery below! 

On Thursday, October 17, 2019 Dodge College hosted its Leo Freedman Foundation First Cut Screening at the Directors Guild of America in Los Angeles.

Dodge College’s annual Leo Freedman Foundation First Cut Screening promotes a selection of top films from the previous year as determined by a panel of distinguished alumni and industry representatives.

Interim Dean, Michael Kowalski, kicked off the program by welcoming guests and introducing the films:

PREHEATED (dir. Luke Snedecor and Sarah Heinz) – A boy’s plan to bake a birthday cake becomes disastrous when his scientist father’s latest experiment gets added to the mix.

RELENTLESS (dir. Shelby Thompson) – The comeback story of a young action sport athlete who seemingly lost everything after a freak accident turned him quadriplegic.

GHAZAAL (dir. Ragini Bhasin) – A thirteen-year-old Afghan refugee hustles around as she experiences her period in a refugee camp.

EMBARKO (dir. Kailee Hague) – When two delivery dogs on a job discover buried treasure in the mountains, their conflicting interests lead to dire consequences.

SKIN HUNGER (dir. Kristina Rodemann) – Desperately lonely, an undocumented immigrant goes to greater and greater lengths to steal moments of touch from those around her.

TWO PAPER NIGHTINGALES (dir. Kaylin George) – A fairy tale of two sisters torn apart by war, told from three different cultural perspectives.

After the screening, guests enjoyed an evening reception where students, alumni, faculty and industry professionals enjoyed opportunities to network and connect with each other.

Each film and crew had a designated station, where guests could learn more about each film and converse with filmmakers.

For more information on First Cut, visit

Films screenings are made possible in part through a grant awarded by the Leo Freedman Foundation. Dodge College thanks the foundation for its continued support of our student filmmakers.

Photos by Juliana Glodek (BFA/FP ’22)