“Run the Risk,” a short film about a lowly office employee who rediscovers life’s joy, took home the top prize at Arizona Christian University’s Firestorm Film Festival, held May 10th at Picture Show in Paradise Valley Mall. The film, by junior Communication major Nicole Jenkins, also earned Jenkins the award for Best Director.

“The movie is about the importance of the arts in helping you find your life’s passions,” Jenkins said.

The awards, the “Sparkies,” recognize outstanding achievement among Arizona Christian University’s film students.

Junior Communication major Lauren Johnson’s film “Some Days Are Just Hard” won three Sparkies, including Best Screenplay for Johnson, Best Acting for PJ Sparks, and Best Music Composition for Julie Higby’s original score.

The “Get a Grip” Sparkie went Eric and Sarah Dalrymple for Andrew Dalrymple’s film “Stanley.” The “Get a Grip” award recognizes individuals for behind-the-camera contributions. “Stanley” also won in the Best Supporting Actor category, with the Sparkie going to the film’s namesake—a 1960s Stanley thermos.

Arizona Christian University and the Department of Communication and English thanks the Picture Show at Paradise Valley Mall for their support of the 2nd annual Firestorm Film Festival. The event was sponsored and supported by Pure Flix Entertainment, Brand Cure, The Arizona Coyotes Foundation, Connect the Dots Promotions, Illuminated Collective, Arcadia City Church, The Original Breakfast House, Kathy Loeffler Real Estate, and other private donors. Future sponsorship opportunities are available by contacting Arizona Christian University’s Advancement Office.

ACU is an accredited, private, non-profit, Christian university in Phoenix offering various bachelor’s degrees including a recently added Psychology major and programs of study such as Criminal Justice, Healthcare Policy, Nonprofit Management, Coaching and Early Childhood Education. All students graduate with a minor in Biblical studies. With a notable student-to-faculty ratio of 13:1, ACU’s distinguished professors are committed to developing the complete person through the integration of faith, learning, and Christian leadership. ACU competes in the NCCAA and is a member of the NAIA and the GSAC. Athletic opportunities include baseball, basketball, cross country, football, golf, soccer, softball, tennis, volleyball and spirit squad. Students have multiple opportunities for campus involvement including mission trips, Urban Outreach, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, chorale, worship bands, and study abroad options.