Alumnus presents film at Los Angeles festival

September 20, 2023

Joe Marcello directs one of his short films outside at a campsite.

Joe Marcello ’19, MS ‘20, a graduate of the School of Communications’ film, television and media arts program, recently screened his short film “Luminous,” at the Silicon Beach Film Festival on September 8.

Marcello started his own company after earning his Quinnipiac degrees.

He officially launched Angel Entertainment in early 2021, a video production company based in Hopedale, Massachusetts. Since its birth, Marcello and his team have earned over a dozen festival selections, obtained numerous awards and have held screenings in Manhattan and Hollywood. Marcello directs all of his projects and finds himself working on corporate videos often within his company.

As a graduate of the 3+1 accelerated dual-degree program, Marcello reflected on how his education pushed him to become a better filmmaker.

“My years at Quinnipiac really let me create a style for my filmmaking,” Marcello said. “A lot of people ask me how I made these short films during and after school. My answer to them is to just do it. Go out and film on the weekends. Film passion projects for class or fun, but constantly be filming. That mentality will help once you step out of school.”

In particular, his recent short film, “Luminous,” has garnered eight festival selections, an honorable mention selection, seven different awards and one nomination.

The story follows a group of individuals who find war among themselves after trying to escape a world at war. In this post-apocalyptic adventure, after an attack leaves 95% of the population gone, a group of young adults band together for survival. Marcello shares how throughout the 30-minute short, the audience will look at characters who are at the edge of survival and the cliff of insanity.

“I really enjoy this story because it is the first time I'm able to create a character with type-1 diabetes in a unique setting,” Marcello said. “Based largely on personal experience, I was able to design a character that realistically reflects a young and healthy diabetic, and I was able to express some of the daily complications that go into living with the disease. Add a little post-apocalyptic drama onto that, and I believe I created a web of characters who are unique and entertaining.”

Marcello and his team are developing the script for the feature-length “Luminous” movie and have plans to seek out possible producers for the independent project.

While the current Writer’s Guild of America (WGA) and SAG-AFTRA have halted countless productions across the country, Angel Entertainment is involved with many non-union works that have not been affected negatively by these circumstances. However, Marcello commented on how the support that the independent film industry has received from those who are on strike is beautiful to see.

Various other films created by Marcello have received recognition, including his short about a separated couple reconnecting over the tragedy of their child, “Denver to Boston,” and “Ocean Child,” a story about a young kid who has a very strong desire to be a mermaid.

The director continues to earn festival selections and awards as he grows within the entertainment industry. Marcello hopes to one day earn an Academy Award for his work.

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