UNG grads host film showcase, debut “fart comedy with a lot of heart”

Two University of North Georgia graduates will host the film showcase “Sozo Bear Presents: A Night at the Movies” at UNG Dahlonega’s Hoag Auditorium on March 10 from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m.

Brad Kennedy and Luke Pilgrim, founders of production company Sozo Bear Films, met at UNG in 2012. In 2014, they formed a creative partnership when they co-wrote the script for “The Apology Service,” a short film.

Brad Kennedy, left, and Luke Pilgrim. (Photo by John Bynum)

“One of my favorite memories at UNG was the premiere of “The Apology Service” before we graduated in 2015,” Kennedy said via email. “It was amazing to see a packed house of more than 300 people come to see a short film that Luke and I poured our hearts and souls into for a year-plus.”

By February 2016, Kennedy and Pilgrim had launched Sozo Bear, which is named for their cats. Their current projects include an orientation film for UNG and several promo films for Amy Ray of the Indigo Girls.

“A Night at the Movies” will highlight eight shorts from local filmmakers, UNG film students among them. The headliner is the premiere of Sozo Bear’s latest short, “The Amazing Anti-Fart Formula.”

“We describe this movie as a fart comedy with a lot of heart,” Pilgrim said in an email. “While it is silly and full of flatulence, the message is really about self-love and being comfortable in your own skin. On another level, the film sort of satirizes our culture’s ‘pill for every problem’ mentality.”

“I will say that I am ridiculously proud of the ‘The Amazing Anti-Fart Formula,’” Kennedy said. “We tested ourselves to tell a story without any dialogue and I think we might have some of our most well-crafted scenes in this film.”

Kennedy and Pilgrim say they feel “truly blessed” to work full-time doing what they enjoy the most. To UNG students who want to do the same, Pilgrim said, “Work on as many sets as possible while you are in school. Now is the time to really go at it hard because there are so many student productions that need help and college is where you can network.”

“UNG was instrumental in my life and career,” Pilgrim added. “I met my wife there as well as Brad. Being in the film program taught us a lot and we made a lot of friends that we still work with today.”

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