Saks graduate making her name in film
by Brooke Carbo
bcarbo@annistonstar.com
Mar 24, 2013 | 19670 views |  0 comments | 89 89 recommendations | email to a friend | print
UA film student Branna Burns, a 2009 Saks High School graduate, will intern at the Cannes Film Festival in France in May. Photo: Submitted photo
UA film student Branna Burns, a 2009 Saks High School graduate, will intern at the Cannes Film Festival in France in May. Photo: Submitted photo
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In her final semester at the University of Alabama, Branna Burns was faced with a bigger decision than whether or not to participate in spring commencement. The 2009 graduate of Saks High School had to choose between traveling to Las Vegas to attend the Broadcast Education Association’s Festival of Media Arts and accept an award for her work as a documentary producer and traveling to France to intern at the Cannes Film Festival and spend two weeks attending movie premieres with Hollywood insiders.

Burns, a senior majoring in telecommunication and film, served as producer on the short film “Art to Life.” The project — a partnership between UA’s Honors College and film students and the Cognitive Dynamics Foundation in Tuscaloosa — explores the benefits of art therapy on Alzheimer’s patients while “documenting their life story,” Burns said. “It’s kind of a way to conserve that story for them and for their families.”

BEA, the international academic organization of electronic media, awarded Burns, film director Greg Kubik and their professor, Rachel Raimist, the Teacher/Student Co-Production Award of Excellence. Burns said she is “a little sad” she will be unable to attend the award ceremony on April 7 during BEA’s annual convention in Las Vegas.

She’s saving every penny for a plane ticket to France. When she first learned about the American Pavilion Student Program at Cannes, Burns wasn’t sure she’d make the cut “But I went for it anyway,” she said.

But make the cut, she did. A week after graduation, Burns will head to the 66th annual Festival de Cannes — one of Hollywood’s most prestigious events with Steven Spielberg serving as this year’s jury president — where she will get the chance to explore her craft at panel discussions and seminars while networking with professionals in her field.

Although Burns said she is most excited about the career opportunities that may come from the experience, she is not immune to its glitz and glamour.

“Obviously I’m excited about the fancy red carpet aspect of it all.”
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Saks graduate making her name in film by Brooke Carbo
bcarbo@annistonstar.com

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