Private Project

Escape Velocity

A young boy struggles to find beauty in the world around him. From pollution, to landfills, to grey skies and alleyways covered in graffiti, the Earth is ugly in the eyes of this boy. He wants to escape from Earth and travel to the far reaches of the beautiful universe. He calculates the escape velocity to leave Earth and imagines a journey into the heavens. It is not until his imagination comes back to Earth (when he sees the globe on his desk) that he realizes beauty was around him all along.

Scientific background: Escape velocity is the minimum speed an object must travel to escape a gravitating body. To escape Earth, an object must travel at about 25,053.686 MPH.

  • James Tralie
  • James Tralie
  • Yiheng Chen
  • Noah Headley
    Key Cast
  • Project Type:
    Short, Student
  • Runtime:
    3 minutes 52 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    January 24, 2015
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - James Tralie

In the past four years, James' films have been selected by film festivals locally, nationally, and internationally for screening and/or awards. In 2011, his film, “Seeing through a New Lens,” received first place in the Narrative category at the WHYY Youth Media Awards. WHYY is the local Philadelphia PBS station. In 2012, his film entitled “What is a Life?” received 2nd place in the Documentary category at the WHYY awards, first place in the Montgomery County Pennsylvania High School Computer Fair, and was selected for screening in Seattle in April 2013 at NFFTY (National Film Festival for the Talented Youth). His film entitled "Screenwriter's Block" received both First Place in the High School Open Category and the First Place Judges' Award at the 2013 WHYY Youth Media Awards. This film was also screened at the San Luis Obispo International Film Festival in the "Future Filmmakers of Tomorrow" category, won a Gold Key from the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, won first place in the Experimental category at the Greenfield Youth Film Festival, was screened at Cineyouth (Chicago International Film Festival), the Santa Monica Teen Film Festival (where it won “Best Animation”), the 20th annual Los Angeles Film Festival, Canberra Short Film Festival, Sidewalk Film Festival, Athens Animation Festival (Athens, Greece), Sidewalk Film Festival, Tallgrass Film Festival, Mosaic Film Experience, Greenfield Youth Film Festival (Where it won "Best Experimental"), and was screened at the All-American High School Film Festival in October. A music video he directed, entitled "My Rebirth... Creatively" has begun its tour around the country. It premiered at the WHYY Youth Media Awards in October of 2014 (where it won "Best Experimental"). It has since continued onto be screened online as part of the Short of the Month competition (where it was nominated for "Best Music Video"), at the All-American High School Film Festival, and will be screening at the West Chester Film Festival in mid-April of 2015. James has had films screened on television and has even appeared in a TV commercial (for the Pennsylvania State Education Association). His films, "Seeing through a New Lens" (2011), "Screenwriter's Block" (2013), and "My Rebirth... Creatively" (2014) were shown on WHYY Television's "Anthology." One of his films, entitled "The Tech Generation Gives Back" was selected as an Honorable Mention in the White House Student Film Festival. As a result, James Tralie was invited to the White House to meet President Obama. Also, James regularly broadcasts the sporting events and other activities for Upper Dublin Township’s local cable network - “UDTV” (Upper Dublin Television). He also applied his interest in filmmaking to his science fair projects. In 2013 with his project entitled "Evaluating Low-Cost Video Optical Avoidances," he used a webcam to track the motion of objects across the field of view to simulate a low-cost back-up assist camera. This past year, he used an XBOX Kinect sensor 3D camera to 3-dimensionally track the tilt and position of a driver's head to determine if he or she is distracted while driving. His projects have won awards in the Montgomery County and Delaware Valley Science Fairs and have been presented at such events as the "Philly Materials Day" at Drexel University and the Nano/Bio Interface Center at the University of Pennsylvania. When he is not directing, filming, or editing films, he plays violin in his school orchestra, plays both varsity and American Legion baseball, and is an avid photographer. His photos have been shown at an international photography exhibition called "The Story of the Creative" in New York City, have been projected onto a skyscraper, and have won awards from the Scholastic Art & Writing competition.

James will be attending Princeton University next year to major in geosciences with a certificate in film production.

Add Director Biography