Tim HuttonAcademy Award winner Timothy Hutton (above) joins CLERKS star Brian O’Halloran (below) on the panel of esteemed adjudicators who will select finalists in the Count Basie Theatre’s annual Project FX competition for New Jersey student filmmakers. The deadline for entries has been extended until March 1, 2016.

Press release from Count Basie Theatre

Brian O'HalloranThe Count Basie Theatre has extended its entry deadline and announced its panel of esteemed judges for Project FX, its statewide student film festival presented by Bank Of America and Sony Pictures Classics.

Students aged 16-25 and presently enrolled in a Garden State-based high school or college now have until midnight on March 1, 2016 to enter their films at www.projectfxbasie.comThe top vote-getter in each category will win a paid internship experience with Sony Pictures Classics in New York, as well as a screening during the first-ever Indie Street Film Festival in Red Bank in July. Second place winners in each category will receive Sony video cameras, while third-place finishers will receive a $500 cash prize.

On March 10, the Basie will reveal twenty films — ten entries from Garden State high schoolers, and an additional ten from students attending New Jersey colleges — as finalists for the competition. The public will have an opportunity to cast votes by “liking” or “sharing” the films on Facebook; a tally which will figure into each film’s final score. Voting will also consist of scores from the judge’s panel, as well as an audience vote at the April 17 festival.

The Basie has also announced its 2016 panel of esteemed adjudicators:

Tom Bernard, Co-President, Sony Pictures Classics

Bonnie Bernstein, Howell native and ESPN / Fox Sports host

Alex Biese, Entertainment Reporter, Asbury Park Press

TJ Bryan, Radio Host, WJRZ-FM and Owner, Shoreflicks

Nina Danevic, Film Editor

Kate Lear, Broadway producer and daughter of the legendary Norman Lear

Robert O’Connor, Founder and Creative Director, FilmOneFest

Brian O’Halloran, Actor (Clerks, Mallrats)

Timothy Hutton, Academy Award winning Actor (Ordinary People)

Nick Paleologos, Executive Director, New Jersey Council on the Arts

Adam Philipson, President and CEO, Count Basie Theatre

Rena Ronson, Partner, and Head of UTA Independent Film Group at United Talent Agency

Linda Safran, Member, National Board of Review of Motion Pictures

James Schamus, Screenwriter and Producer (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon; Brokeback Mountain)

Maureen Van Zandt, Actress, The Sopranos, Broadway’s Hair

Michael Vickerman, Writer; producer of the 2015 Screen Actors Guild Award-nominated Tut

Alicia Yerves, Social Media Manager, Two River Theater

The Project FX Festival will feature screenings of all twenty student films, as well as a Q&A panel featuring some of our esteemed judges.

“Last year’s crop of entries contained true, cinematic gems – works from students I’m certain will have long careers in film,” said Tom Bernard, co-president and co-founder of Sony Pictures Classics, when the Basie announced the fest’s return last fall. “I am excited to see what we will find at this year’s Project FX.”