FA students Sophia ‘23 and Joseph ‘26 Legutko are known around FA for their musical prowess. But these creative siblings also like making movies and creating satire for their online ‘zine.
After watching the 1971 iconic public service announcement
featuring Native American actor Iron Eyes Cody whose single tear at the sight of garbage being strewn in his pristine environment helped bring attention to the perils of pollution and the environmental movement more broadly, the amateur filmmakers were inspired to create their own short film and submit it to the Redford Center Stories Filmmaking Challenge. Each year the Redford Center
invites students in grades 5 through 12 to submit short films that showcase their commitment to environmentalism and inspire community action.
Titled “Rockin’ and Rollin’” the Legutkos’ short, shot on a Falmouth beach, is a whimsical PSA demonstrating the detrimental impact of plastics on marine life. In the film, Sophia, dressed as a trash bag, tries to strangle both a sea turtle and a great white shark (a nod to the siblings’ Cape Cod roots). Both sea creatures are played by Joseph.
The film caught the eye of the judges. The Redford Center notified the siblings this past week that the work had won the Junior Environmental Storytellers Award.
On learning that they were selected, Sophia said, “We weren’t expecting them to like our film.” “We were just trying to bring some variety to the competition,” said Joseph. As part of the prize package, the Legutkos will choose an environmental organization to receive a $350 donation from the Center.
Co-founded in 2005 by Robert Redford and his son James, The Redford Center uses the power of storytelling to promote environmental awareness and justice. According to the website, the Center has produced three award-winning feature documentaries and over 30 short films and supported numerous media projects with grants and other services.
The official public announcement of the Stories Challenge award recipients will be made Friday, April 22 in observance of Earth Day. All awarded films will be premiered as part of the Center’s Friday Night Film series held on Friday, April 22. To watch, please sign up for the Center's newsletter