12-year-old Yellowknife filmmaker wins online women's film award

Horror comes to Yellowknife's Stanton Territorial Hospital in this 12-year-old filmmaker’s award winning short film.

'I had a lot of confidence in my film, but I didn't realize I could make it that far,' says Andrea Geraghty

Andrea Geraghty is a 12-year-old Yellowknife filmmaker. She writes, directs, acts in and edits her own films. (Submitted by Ashley Geraghty)

Cut to close-up:

Andrea Geraghty stares into a shaky camera, wide-eyed, in the shadows of a reddish room.

"They're living under the Stanton building, under the new hospital," she says, her face fraught with fear. "And they're angry that they're building on their home."

Cue the dramatic music, and for the next minute and 18 seconds, Andrea's film Yellowknife Ground Zero takes the viewer through a roller coaster ride of a story involving angry fairies, rockets and mouldy snow.

It recently won the Best Short Short award from the Women's Only Entertainment Film Festival, a monthly online festival that recognizes women in the film industry.

"I had a lot of confidence in my film, but I didn't realize I could make it that far," said 12-year-old Andrea, sitting next to her father Ashley Geraghty.

The Geraghty family discovered their love for filmmaking through the Dead North film festival that runs every winter in Yellowknife. Andrea is the youngest director to ever enter the Dead North Film Festival, according to festival president Jay Bulckaert.

Family affair

Typically, the Geraghty family creates films together.

"It's just now become a family activity," said Ashley. "It's one of those things that once it kinda gets into your blood, you always want to do it. It's in the middle of winter here, so it kinda changes up the winter blues."

Ashley Geraghty (left) and his daughter Andrea love making films for the Dead North film festival in Yellowknife. (CBC)

But this year, when Ashley decided he wanted to "up [his] game a little bit," he didn't end up casting his daughters.

"When I couldn't be in his film, and I was asking for a long time, my dad gave me the idea of making my own film," said Andrea. "I loved the idea."

It was the first time Andrea made her own film for the festival. She did all the acting, writing, directing and editing.

"Everyone was like 'gasp!' and they all started clapping really loud," Andrea said of the moment her film screened at Dead North.

For her father it was a moment to cherish.

"Honestly hers are much better than any of the ones I've done, so I'm really proud," said Ashley.

Although her short film screened at Dead North, Andrea didn't make the festival deadline for award consideration. But she says she was elated when her dad entered her in the women's film festival.

Andrea leaves a word of advice for other young, aspiring filmmakers: "Don't ever be like really stressed. You always have to have a good idea and just roll with it. And if it doesn't work out, you just have to keep on trying. Nothing's gonna go exactly the way you want it."

She says she's working on her second film which involves airborne diseases and parents.

With files from Loren McGinnis


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