Molly Smith, a senior at Montverde Academy, is a talented filmmaker and screenwriter who continues to demonstrate her ability to tell stories that engage audiences. On November 1, her dedication and hard work on her craft earned her two National Student Production Emmy Awards from the Foundation of The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.
Molly received the Emmys for “Dear America: A Film by Generation Z,” in the PSA category, and her Writing Reel, but also earned nominations for “Rules for Girls,” in the commercial category, and “I Don’t Know” in the Short Form – Fiction category. Molly received the Emmys for “Dear America: A Film by Generation Z,” in the PSA category, and her Writing Reel, but also earned nominations for “Rules for Girls,” in the commercial category, and “I Don’t Know” in the Short Form – Fiction category. The awards were announced via livestream. Molly, her family and friends were watching anxiously awaiting each category to be announced and celebrating with cheers and congratulatory hugs on her success.
“I am incredibly honored to win these two awards,” said Molly. “None of this would be possible without the long hours and hard work of my friends and family who have supported these projects. This achievement has been a goal for me since freshman year of high school, and it fuels me to keep creating films that make an impact.”
“Dear America” was based on a poem she wrote after the gun violence in Parkland, FL. She managed the entire process and details required of the project, resulting in a two-day shoot which was co-directed with Sage Croft, a junior at Windermere High School. Molly has been pursuing filmmaking for a number of years and has been greatly supported by MVA. “Dear America” is having the outcome she hoped for, which is getting people thinking and talking about the effect of gun violence in schools. “I am proud to make films that raise awareness and promote social change through art,” said Molly. The film has almost 75,000 views on social media, and garnered media attention.
To be considered for the National Emmy, “Dear America,” “I Don’t Know”, her commercial, and Writing Reel all earned Suncoast Student Production Awards earlier this year. In addition, she has earned awards for her storytelling and writing abilities. “God Bless America,” a play she wrote as part of her participation in theatre earned a Scholastic Gold Key at the regional level followed by a National Scholastic Gold Medal for Dramatic Writing in March. Teens nationwide submitted 340,000 original works this year to be considered for certificates, medals and national exhibition, publication, and scholarships.
“We are extremely proud of Molly’s accomplishments,” said Dr. Kasey C. Kesselring, Headmaster, Montverde Academy. “The outstanding quality of her work is a testament to her passion for refining every aspect of the process. In addition to her filmmaking skills, Molly has earned recognition for her work as a playwright, actress, musician, and technician – all skills which she has honed in programs at MVA. We are proud that our Fine Arts program provides a multi-faceted, cross-disciplinary curriculum that strengthens students’ skills in all areas, and Molly is an exemplary example of the success that can be achieved.”