UW-Stout News Story

Recent graduates' film chosen for Flyway Film Festival

September 30, 2013

Two recent UW-Stout graduates have had their film “Ntxhov” (“Disturbed” in English) chosen for the Flyway Film Festival.

The popular festival is Oct. 17-20 in Stockholm and Pepin. "Ntxhov" will screen Sunday, Oct. 20.

For more information go to the festival website. About 50 films will be featured, including two that recently received Academy Award nominations for best foreign language film.

"Ntxhov," in Hmong with English subtitles, began as a project for the Digital Cinema Studio course taught by Assistant Professor Kevin Pontuti from UW-Stout's School of Art and Design.

"Ntxhov" was written and produced by Nou Chee Her, of Weston, and Xai Lao, of Schofield. They graduated May 10 from UW-Stout with master's degrees in information and communication technologies. They previously earned bachelor's degrees from UW-Stout in multimedia design.

Kevin PontutiPontuti said the film was chosen by Flyway from more than 800 that were submitted. "I'm very proud of them and what they've done with the film. They are very talented filmmakers with original artistic voices that are continuing to develop with each film they make," he said.

The 26-minute paranormal film is about Xeng, played by UW-Stout student Sheenab Her of Wausau, who is falling behind academically in college because of nightmares and sleep paralysis.

Xeng's professor, Dr. Anderson, played by UW-Stout Assistant Professor Mitch Ogden, gives Xeng extra time to catch up on his assignments. Xeng, however, first must overcome his mysterious personal problem before he can move on.

The film also screened in May in St. Paul at the Qhia Dab Neeg Film Festival.

Her and Lao are part of Sandal Productions with other UW-Stout students and former students Kalvin Yang, of Wausau; Yeng Lee, of Wausau; and Sue Her, of Schofield. The group formed the video production company about six years ago.

To see a trailer for the film, click here.

A second film in the Flyway festival has UW-Stout connections. "Death to Prom," a comedy, will make its world premiere. However, the directors test-screened the film last spring before a UW-Stout student audience, Pontuti said.

A co-director of "Death to Prom," Jeremy Wilker, is on the School of Art and Design's Professional Advisory Board.

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