Jenks Students Win National Documentary Competition

Monday, April 19th 2021, 4:15 pm
By: Mallory Thomas

JENKS, Oklahoma -

More than a dozen students in Jenks are being honored for documentaries they made and entered into a national C-SPAN competition.

Two of the first place winners are sophomores and said they are surprised by the win and excited for their future. 

“This film took a lot of hours to make; yeah, there was a lot of planning that went into it a lot of staying after school a lot of coming in while school was closed even just spending hours a day editing it," said Zane Smith.

Zane Smith and Gabriel Thiog created a documentary called "Not a Victimless Crime," which is a film about people watching movies online and not paying for them. “Bringing awareness to this problem that’s really happening now also because of coronavirus everybody is staying home now and there’s a bigger increase in piracy rates," said Thiog.

Thiog said he had a passion for films since he was a young child. He said he and Smith didn't expect their film to receive national attention. 

“It’s not that we didn’t try, we did but it’s just a national competition and there were so many entries and so many different topics that we thought the odds of winning were pretty low," said Smith.

Students from across the country submitted 150 videos to the C-SPAN competition.

Thiog and Smith said they're both saving their $3,000 price winnings for now and they're thankful for the recognition. 

“I really want to thank Mr. Raphael, my film teacher for guiding me and my partner to be successful in this film," said Thiog.

Out of the 299 students winners, 16 are Jenks high school students. 

To watch Thiog and Smiths documentary, CLICK HERE.