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    Sanger West students walk the red carpet for Picture the Valley Film Festival

    By Marco Rosas,


    FRESNO, Calif. ( KSEE/KGPE ) – Sanger West High School student filmmakers celebrated their success on the red carpet on Thursday as they walked up to see their own creations featured in the Picture The Valley Film Festival . spoke to Sanger West High School students Noelia Briceno, Daniel Lopez, Marcelo Aponte, and Elizeo Martinez about their experience making the film, “Fentanyl Kills.”

    ‘It could be your child’s story that we’re showing’: Student films being shown at Fresno film festival

    The film was submitted under the PSA category of the film festival’s criteria, allowing students to bring awareness to an issue they felt was important.

    Briceno, who acted in the film, says she never would’ve pictured herself acting.

    “I was usually kind of a shy reserved type of person,” Briceno said. She is now considering a career in film after getting the chance to try it out.

    Daniel Lopez said his favorite part of the experience was working on the film with his friends. When asked who he thought worked the hardest Lopez paused and smiled.

    “I think it was all of us – we all went out, filmed together, came up with ideas, and even while we were filming came up with more ideas.”

    Elizeo Martinez says he is mostly happy that he was able to make something his mom was proud of. Martinez’s mother and younger siblings were all there for the premiere as well.

    The final member of the team, Marcelo Aponte, says his favorite part of filmmaking was his role as director. Aponte says he never knew how creative the process of picking out shots, angles, and editing could be.

    The Fresno County Superintendent of Schools organized the event. Superintendent Michele Copher says giving kids opportunities to create through filmmaking is an enormous resource in the battle to keep kids on their right path.

    “Students that participate in the arts have better attendance, perform better in school academically, they have a stronger self-concept,” Copher said. “Those of us that watch them in the classrooms see them problem solve creatively and work well together.”

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