Information Technology team wins first place at True/False film festival’s Gimme Truth! competition
Have you ever heard of the spinal condition Porro Coccyx? Probably not because it doesn’t exist. But University of Missouri Information Technology Instructor Chip Gubera and his capstone student Ben Kaplan fooled True/False film festival judges and audience members alike at the “Gimme Truth!” documentary game show and competition March 5 at the Blue Note. The competition challenges participants to create a two-minute film that is 100 percent true or 100 percent false in an attempt to fool the audience and judges. Three judges were allowed one question each after the film and then had to vote whether it was true or false.
Gubera and Kaplan, a senior theater and information technology major, filmed a story about a man who was born with a tailbone that curves outward, instead of inward. The film, titled “David Andersson: the Man with a Tail,” features Andersson’s mother (who is actually Gubera’s partner Mara Aruguete) describing his condition and later, Kaplan holding a cat and stroking its tail.
“We wanted to make a false story truly believable,” Gubera said.
The duo shot and produced the film in one weekend. Gubera said they came up with the idea on Friday, filmed the next day and edited and added music that Sunday to meet the entrance deadline.
“We were just sitting in my office talking about the festival and Ben said ‘What if I had a tail?” Gubera said. “After conceiving the idea we came up with a bunch of questions we would want to ask this guy and included these details in the film.”
Gubera and Kaplan fabricated the disease name, the photos and the character, David Andersson.
They ended up fooling the judges and the audience, taking first place, and receiving a trophy, $200 (which Kaplan is using for his capstone film project), and a lighting package from Spectrum Studios.
“An actual extension of the vertebrae is pretty rare,” Gubera said.
Click here to view the winning film.