Lewis and Kremenek: Life Imitates Film

Wearing his red vest, name tag and beanie, Blake Lewis patrols the library at SUNY Plattsburgh, a university located in northern New York. He stocks shelves, pushes in chairs and occasionally checks his Snapchat.

While sitting at a table in the quiet area located on the third floor of the library, he is greeted by his friend, Ben Kremenek, who is between classes. Kremenek begins eating a freshly made sub from Subway.

The two go back and forth with sarcastic commentary on upcoming assignments and possible plans for the weekend. Kremenek gives Lewis a cookie from Subway. While eating the cookie, Lewis pretends he is smoking, holding pieces of the cookie like a cigarette. Kremenek sneers while Lewis laughs and then coughs, inhaling the rest of the cookie.

Kremenek and Lewis are TV Video Production majors. They each desire to work in different areas of filmmaking, but both are on a mission to see their dreams come true.

Screen Shot 2019-02-19 at 10.18.45 AM
Enter a captionBlake Lewis and Ben Kremenek at the library during Lewis’ shift. Photo by Anthony Bubbico.

Many parents and people feel it’s unwise to pursue a career in film, or study it for that matter. According to an article written by Joshua Caldwell, an award-winning filmmaker, for Medium magazine, film school is “a waste of time and money.

You’ll graduate with a worthless degree and less knowledge than if you took the money and made a feature,” Caldwell writes.

“My main goal is to become a filmmaker,” Lewis said. “Director, writer, all of it. I’m prepared to start at the bottom.”

Lewis and Kremenek met in a video production class. They were paired together to make a short film.

“It was actually really amazing,” Lewis said. “He was a great dude to bounce ideas off of and it kind of made me enjoy the major more.”

Lewis is a longtime fan of Marvel movies. He found an admiration for the characters. Lewis was impressed with Avengers: Infinity Wars, directed by the Russo brothers. He also greatly admires Guardians of the Galaxy.

“I always enjoyed superhero movies,” Lewis said. “I always looked more into them. I like creating characters. You can put yourself into a character.”

Lewis also has two minors: English and film. He has always enjoyed the creative process over the technical process.

Krememek is the opposite. He was originally a computer security major, but changed to TV Video Production in his sophomore year.

“I wanted to do something with technical appliances,” Kremenek said. “I figured computer security would pay the bills, but I wanted to do something more personal.”

Kremenek grew up watching Disney and Pixar movies. Among his favorites are Toy Story and WALL-E.

“Disney is cool,” Kremenek said, “but Pixar hustles. They have had many sleepless nights creating stories and animation.”

Kremenek would love to work in motion graphics or advertising. His dream job would be 3D modeling for Pixar.

After he graduates from SUNY Plattsburgh, he plans on obtaining his masters degree. “I’d love to go more in depth about motion graphics,” Kremenek said. “Right now though I’m not thinking too much about it.”

As Kremenek finishes his sub, Lewis gets up from the table. “Film is everywhere,” Lewis said. “You can’t escape it.”

Kremenek finishes chewing and stands up. The two push in the their chairs and laugh. “Life imitates film,” Kremenek said.

Perhaps it sometimes does.


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