Kent State graduate chases dream to Cannes Film Festival

Sarah Husbands

Most Kent State students take their marketing degrees into fields such as sales and advertising. Torin Scott had other plans — this Kent State graduate is taking his talents into the film industry.

In 2000, Scott graduated with a major in marketing and a minor in advertising. After realizing this wasn’t a career he wanted to pursue, Scott took a crack at the film industry.

“I knew I would make a lot of money in sales. I was in it for the business, not the passion,” Scott said.

After dropping out of his sales career of eight years, Scott started shooting and editing films. Teaming up with friends Joe Buscemi and Jason Tostevin, they created “Hands Off Productions,” a team that will celebrate their anniversary at this year’s Cannes Film Festival.

The group’s hard work paid off with their short fantasy film “Stones,” which won the Columbus 48 Hour Film Project in September. Each team was asked to design a film in two days with an assigned genre.

“We were all brainstorming, and the idea for our film popped into my head. Once I buckled down for some quiet time, I wrote the story from beginning to end,” Scott said.

“Stones” is a short film that portrays a man who encounters three magical pebbles. As he runs through the streets of Columbus, he experiences three near-death experiences, forcing him to lose a pebble for every encounter.

The film has a mysterious essence to it because you question what is actually happening throughout the entire 6-minute film. Fortunately, the plot unravels at the end, and the story is made clear.

The team won the international award at the Cannes International Film Festival, giving them the opportunity to travel to France for a screening of the film. “Stones” will screen May 16 in the Cannes Short Film Corner with other contest winners. It was named one of the best films of the international competition from 3,000 entries and 80 city winners, a dream come true for the production team.

“If I could go back to college and give myself advice, I’d tell myself to go after what makes me happy and not after money, for that is what mattered in the end,” Scott said.

Contact Sarah Husbands at [email protected].