Brent Rumble went surfing one day and ended up in Santa Barbara.
The South African native was on a surfing trip in Indonesia when he met a group of Santa Barbarans who encouraged the budding filmmaker to consider Brooks Institute, and just a few months later he was here. Now, he’s one of the top competitors in the college section of this year’s 10-10-10 competition.
Rumble was paired with scriptwriter Katherine Waskul of UCSB, a soft-spoken yet talented writer and film major, and for the last several days the two of them have been leading a veritable army of more than a dozen Brooks students, filmmakers, and actors. Waskul’s script tells the story of a Middle Eastern scientist at UCSB who is treated with growing prejudice in the days after 9/11. It’s a great script, and everyone on set was thrilled that they were the team to bring it to life.
When they shot on State Street late Saturday afternoon, the crew passed as professionals; people watched from across the street as they filmed, and many commented that they thought this was a “real film” they were witnessing.
Later that night, the crew convened at Restaurant Roy to shoot a bar scene, but their luck drew thin when the room they were supposed to be using was occupied more than an hour later than expected. The crew ate and engaged in merriness while, at the table next door, a group of inebriated partygoers took their sweet time finishing their food and drink. Like Josh Shimmin, the other Brooks student in the competition, Rumble had an entire trailer stuffed stunningly full of film equipment and supplies, so waiting around in the cold until after 11 p.m. wasn’t blessed news. “Why won’t they leave already?!” was the refrain of the night.
Of course, when you’re a film student with only 10 days to produce an entire short film, even a few minutes is enough time to come up with new ideas for the movie. As the night dredged on and the many cigarettes burned down to their stubs, the team joked about how lucky they were there weren’t rules that forced them to include 10 specific objects in their film — like a saltshaker or tin foil — since this had apparently been a 10-10-10 rule in years past.
At long last the drunken revelers left, and Rumble and Waskul could begin laying out their set and supplies. They were shooting in the all-green, art-covered back room at Roy, and for the first time that day the other diners didn’t seem fazed by the tens of thousands of dollars of equipment being shuttled from the U-Haul out front to the back of the restaurant. As Jimena, the art director, rearranged flowers on top of the table, Katherine laughed in the hallway with one of the other crew members. “I play the bagpipes, and he sings Celtic music!” she explained.