‘Slings and Arrows’: ELHS Senior Garners Multiple Awards with Short Film

Student-produced short film wins awards at the Indie Short Fest and IndieX Fest


ELHS senior Aiden T. Rodgers produced and directed an award-winning drama: “Slings and Arrows.” The mature short film bunkers three friends debating topics such as death, suicide, and beliefs in the after-life, knowing
that a bomb is coming. “It is an argument about if they should allow the world to take them or should they do it themselves,” Rodgers said. Each character shares a differing opinion on the after-life and whether or not taking their
own lives is a better option than allowing death due to outside causes. “Slings and Arrows” earned awards
“Outstanding Achievement by a Young Filmmaker” from Indie Short Fest and “Honorable Mention for Best Young
Filmmaker” from both IndieX Fest and Independent Shorts Awards. “I realized I needed a portfolio piece, and
I already had this script in the works, so it all worked out,” Rodgers said. Though this caused one of the many challenges in the filming process: a time limit. Rodgers had about a week to get this done in order to apply for his
desired colleges. Originally, this piece was meant to look very different. Rodgers had an original script which included only two characters. After revision from co-writer and senior Cora Muschinsky, a third character was
added, creating the dynamic trio seen through the short film.

ELHS students junior Bo Davidson, senior Patrick Conaway, and senior Arden Yale played main characters
in the short, using their real names as characters. “I want viewers to think about what they would do, how they see
the world around them, and how they see others and how that itself affects their world view,” Conaway said. He played a major role in the process of making the film, as the set was built in his basement, which led to more challenges occurring. The short takes place in a bunker that needed to be constantly dark, resulting in filming only at night, which also was a source for problems due to the light input in the camera. Director of Photography
Emerson Cole (Bo’s older brother) was able to make the shots smooth and seamless despite the challenges.

Other struggles included the score, also known as the sound. With little time left, Rodgers was able to contact their cousin Owen Rodgers who put the score together within hours making the film complete. The entire process took around four days, and the awards came next. Rodgers ensured that it was less of their directing and more of a collaborative effort. The script changed multiple times on set as problems arose and overall “everyone had
an equal part in the making of the film. No one person made all of it happen,” according to Rodgers. More films are on the way from the new director and can be found on their Youtube channel a.t.rodgers.