Film for Christ

WWU students attend this year’s Sonscreen Film Festival, make Christian filmmaking connections


In early April, 16 Walla Walla University film students attended the Sonscreen Film Festival in Loma Linda, California. This annual film festival is sponsored by the North American Division of Seventh-day Adventists, and serves as a connection hub where students and young professionals can meet with peers and established filmmakers. 

Senior film, TV, and media major Krista VanHook’s dramatic short film, “Taste”, was screened Saturday evening, followed by a Q&A with her and the audience. She says much of her preparation for this was spent in prayer: “I wanted to make sure that I was opening myself up fully to being used by God, and not letting my ego get in the way of that when I got on stage.”

Friday evening included a film premiere of “Color of Threads,”a Walla Walla University short-film written by WWU alumna Josie Henderson. This film was made possible by the collaboration of several film professionals and WWU students. Samantha Hodges, junior film, TV, and media major who worked on the film, says, “My absolute favorite part of the festival was watching the final product on the big screen … seeing how it touched so many people truly inspired me.”

Hodges says this trip showed her the diverse job opportunities within film, and it was a great chance for networking: she connected with Kristina Daley, an assistant director for “The Chosen,” while Vanhook met John Quinn, head editor for “The Chosen,” who agreed to be a guest speaker on her podcast. Both girls also built relationships with other Adventist university film students.

“Sonscreen is so valuable to me as a Christian because being a person of faith who wants to enter into a largely secular industry can feel so isolating at times,” says VanHook. She appreciates how this festival serves as a gathering place for people who are both Christians and creatives. She recalls her favorite part was the opportunity to be surrounded by so much art made by such wonderful artists; she adds Sonscreen is an event that never disappoints.

To see clips from the Sonscreen trip and hear more from Samantha Hodges, visit the university’s Instagram page.

Posted May 6, 2024

WWU student on-stage at the Sonscreen Film Festival
Group photo of WWU students attending Sonscreen Film Festival