A Tauranga Girls' College has won two major awards at the International Youth Silent Film Festival NZ National Awards.
Asher Wadsworth, 17, of Te Puna, took first place and was also named Best Female Filmmaker.
The global competition challenges filmmakers under the age of 20 to make a three-minute silent film.
The top two New Zealand films will go on to the festival's Global Awards in Portland, Oregon, next year.
The competition has been a stepping stone into the industry for many budding local filmmakers since 2016.
"Entrants get to choose a soundtrack from 10 musical scores and develop their film and script around the music, which is played on the Wurlitzer organ," coordinator Janinne Spiers said.
"The majority of people entering will be doing media studies or learning film-making.
"We have a lot of schools around the country who participate and it's a great way for them to be introduced into the world of filmmaking."
Films created by students from Tauranga Girls' College, Bethlehem College and Selwyn Ridge Primary School made the finals.
Wadsworth drew every frame of her film Insomnia and said she tried to communicate mood.
"The best silent films are written specifically for a piece of music," she said.
Because of Covid, the physical awards show was canned in favour of an online event.
Spiers said many struggled to finish films "because we went into lockdown just before the deadline".
"There were a lot of filmmakers who had to adjust a few things and change their films slightly or scenes they needed to shoot that they couldn't, but aside from that I was really impressed with the standard of filmmaking this year."
But Wadsworth said lockdown allowed her to focus "instead of being at school distracted by other stuff".
She plans to attend Media Design School in Auckland next year.
"I really want to do CGI there. I think it will take my films to the next level.
"Quite a few of the graduates end up working for Weta Workshop, so I'm really hoping that's where I'll be in 20 years."
A group of students from Selwyn Ridge Primary School in Welcome Bay won the Best Production Design award.
"We filmed it on my iPad and then we used iMovie to edit it," 11-year-old Caitlin Orr said.
Caitlin also picked up the award for Best Under-12 Filmmaker.
Winning films can be viewed at the Baycourt Community & Arts Centre YouTube channel.