JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Jacksonville filmmakers made movie magic this weekend as part of the 48 hour film project.
A huge Hollywood hotspot back in the day, Jacksonville was known as "the Winter Film Capital of the World" in the 1910s and 1920s. Since then, the First Coast has had it's fair share of celebrity sightings.
Big films have been shot along the First Coast over the years, including G.I. Jane, the Manchurian Candidate, Basic, and Recount. Local sailors were also featured in the recent Battleship movie.
And the spotlight was on local filmmakers this weekend as nearly 700 locals have been shooting short films across the First Coast since Friday and the clock is ticking.
"It's interesting because a lot of people don't realize how many filmmakers are in Jacksonville," said producer Chris Ackerman with PRI Productions. "Teams have 48 hours to do an entire film compared to filmmakers who have years."
Ackerman said there are 14 different genres, but all the films need 3 elements: a hotel employee, an egg, and "their line of dialgog is 'I better not see this on Facebook," Ackerman said. "So every film regardless of genre, whether they have a western or they have a drama, has to have those 3 elements."
One filmmaker, Ty Ormond, was the team leader of Camera 42, a group of students from Keystone Heights High School.
"I haven't slept for more than 5 hours this whole weekend," Ormond said.
His team was on the waitlist and got added at the last minute because of a cancellation.
"This is one of the teams that was on the wait list," Ackerman said. "So they're actually doing it in less than 24 hours, which is pretty crazy"
It's a great opportunity for both young and experienced filmmakers.
"The films here are not just competing with Jacksonville," Ackerman added. "They're competing with films worldwide. There are over a hundred of these across the world. It's like 10,000 filmmakers that are involved."
The students are proud to be a part of the competition and they hope they win. "That would blow me out of the water honestly," student Ashley Long said.
"The top film is actually screened in Los Angeles and I think it's the top 10 films worldwide are actually going to be screened at Cannes," Ackerman said.
First there will be screenings of the short films Tuesday through Thursday at the Florida Theatre starting at 7 p.m. Judges will pick the top films.
First Coast News