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Alumnus’ work grabs the spotlight at Carolina film contest

C-N alumnus and film director Daniel Hamby (center) stands with producer Trey Riley (left) and lead actor Kyle Riggs at the Made in Carolinas 2022: Very Superstitious Contest.

Award-winning film maker Daniel Hamby drew quite a bit of attention at the Made in Carolinas 2022: Very Superstitious Contest on Sept. 13. The 2013 C-N alumnus earned multiple awards for his film “In the Dead of Light,” which he wrote and directed. The event is sponsored by the Carolina Film Community.

“Last night was fun,” said Hamby. “We tied for Best Cinematography, won Best Actor, Best Director and Best Film.”

With the contest’s theme being “superstition,” all films were required to include a provided image of a black cat in one of its scenes. “We snuck it in there,” Hamby said.

Hamby says his love for film making started early. “I’ve kind of always done it – even as a kid, just reenacting.  “Christopher Reeves’s Superman movie was a big thing,” Hamby laughed. “That movie, I pretty much made over and over again.” His creative desire grew as he did. “I just stuck with it. I got cameras for Christmas and kept making stuff. When it came time to pick a college, I was like, ‘what else am I going to do?’ This was really the only thing I could imagine myself doing.”

The Chattanooga native, who now resides in Charlotte, North Carolina, was a double major in film and communications while at C-N. It was what he found on campus that helped feed his film making ambition. “All the professors there who I was under, was very supportive. They would push you to do projects not only inside the classroom, but outside the classroom. They helped find opportunities in the area,” said Hamby, who credits his professors for instilling what it takes to make a good story. “I think that’s how you stand out, and Carson-Newman definitely helped me do that.”

Coming off his recent success, Hamby said he’s writing a few different projects and will soon be pitching those. He said the next thing for him is a “feature.” “Hopefully in the next few months there will be more to tell,” he said.

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