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May 07, 2024

Spotlight on Dien Vo, Faculty in Film and Media Studies

Still from An Occurrence

Faculty in Film and Media Studies Dien Vo has recently finished a circuit of screenings of his short film An Occurrence at multiple prominent film festivals.

An Occurrence, which Vo wrote, directed, and produced, was partly funded by the Simon's Rock's faculty development grant, and the Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation's Martha Boschen Porter Fund. A few students also worked on the film as crew.

Of the film festivals that An Occurrence was screened, the New York State Writers Institute's Albany Film Festival and the Queens World Film Festival were two of the most recent, with Vo returning from yet another festival just this week. In Albany, An Occurrence stood shoulder-to-shoulder with the likes of short films Philadelphia Bound and Dead Drop in the Dramatic I category, and while in Queens, it rubbed elbows again with fellow Albany festival contestant Sucker.

Standing at 17 minutes and a handful of meaningful seconds, An Occurrence is described as a “moody, poetic, and meditative work about what is said and unspoken between four generations in a family. It’s a celebration of Art Cinema and mixed households. While the story is intentionally subtle, there’s tenderness and palpable tension beneath the surface – a play of quiet emotions. Although the family is the focus, the house they reside in, the lives of strangers, distant places, and nature are all equally part of the narrative. We’re connected to each other, space, and time, even if we don’t always notice. Shot mostly at dawn and dusk, it evokes feelings of transition, impermanence, and beginnings.”

While the tour of screenings has concluded for now, Vo hopes to attend more festivals in the future, allowing scores of audiences to experience the film again or for the first time. 

Watch the trailer for An Occurrence on Vo’s website.