Fairfield Ledger
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Neighbors Growing Together | Dec 11, 2016

MUM alumnus wins Student Academy Award

Oct 05, 2016
Photo by: submitted Coffeen and Lynch

The David Lynch Graduate School of Cinematic Arts at Maharishi University of Management announced that 2015 graduate Johnny Coffeen has been awarded the coveted Student Academy Award for his thesis film, “The Swan Girl,” about an artist mysteriously held captive in a studio, sculpting complex figures in an effort to atone for the mistakes of his past.

The award will qualify him to be considered for an Academy Award nomination early next year.

David Lynch tweeted soon after learning the news:  “Congratulations to Johnny Coffeen!  David Lynch MFA in Film Alumni on winning a 2016 Student Academy Award!”

“I want to thank David Lynch for being himself, and inspiring me to be myself.  If nothing else happens in my career, I will die a happy man knowing my hero loved my film,” said Coffeen.

A press release from the David Lynch Graduate School of Cinematic Arts remarked that the first-time win for the David Lynch Graduate School of Cinematic Arts at M.U.M. is a remarkable achievement for a program that is so new and only in its third year of existence. Coffeen is a member of the second graduating class of the school that uses the Transcendental Meditation technique to encourage students to tap into their creative potential.

The Academy has voted 17 students as winners of the 43rd Student Academy Awards competition. The academy received 1,749 films, a record number. The 2016 winners join the ranks of such past Student Academy Award winners including: Pete Docter, John Lasseter, Spike Lee, Trey Parker, Cary Fukunaga and Robert Zemeckis.

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