Filmmaking Student’s Short Films Selected for National, International Festivals

Senior Massimo Soto’s short film, Below the Rise: The Untold Story of Costa Rica, was selected at eight film festivals (so far) in three countries — the United States, Spain, and Czechia — and he won an award for Outstanding Excellence at the Nature Without Borders Film Festival.

Massimo’s film Wind River Full Court Peace, a collaboration with Reece Weinberger ’23, also has been selected as a finalist for the New York Indie Shorts Awards (IMDb Qualifying) and semi-finalist for Lunenburg Doc Fest (Canadian Screen Award Qualifying). He is the youngest filmmaker accepted at the Black Cat Picture Show Film Festival.
Massimo’s film about Costa Rica was made possible, in part, by a Russ Hogg Grant for Creative Expression. These grants provide an opportunity for students to further their interest in creative expression and innovation in ways that fall outside the typical course offerings at Hackley. Trustee Jason ’89 and Alexandra Hogg P ’19, ’22 established this endowment to honor the life’s work of Russ Hogg, Jason’s father and a former Hackley trustee. The Hoggs’ philanthropic leadership inspired friends and family to join them in creating the endowment in Russ’s name to foster creativity and innovation in myriad forms and fields, including technology, the creative arts (performing, visual, and digital), science, entrepreneurialism, global challenges, and interdisciplinary inquiry.