CME Content Academy student - Viktoria Hodvan
Viktoria Hodvan doesn’t give up. Not when she’s auditioning for acting roles and certainly not when she was first denied a place at the CME Content Academy. “I was sad. I cried,” the 25-year-old from Bratislava said. “I was really sure I would be chosen.” The academy is designed to develop talented newcomers into the scriptwriters, showrunners, and TV producers of tomorrow. TV Nova and TV Markíza created CME together with The Television Institute to train students in the television industry and allow them to work long-term for the two broadcasters.
Viktoria was determined to be a part of the academy. A few weeks after her rejection, she read an article in the Czech Forbes about Kamila Zlatušková, the founder of The Television Institute. Kamila is also the creator of the Serial Killer film festival held in Brno every year in September – and she was looking for volunteers.
“I signed up right away,” Viktoria said. “I really wanted to show them that I belonged at CME.”
Viktoria was assigned to greet festival VIPs at the airport, a job that thrilled her because it allowed her to meet directors and other film experts. It also put her in front of Kamila. Viktoria was already preparing to apply for the second course at CME, but on the last day of the festival, Kamila told her to expect a call.
“We have plans for you,” Kamila said.
“I thought it had something to do with Serial Killer,” Viktoria said. But Kamila explained that two students could no longer attend the academy and Viktoria was first on the waiting list. Did she want to attend CME? Classes would start in 10 days.
“She changed my life with that call,” Viktoria said. “I cried happily for two hours.”
Once she was done crying, Viktoria moved to Brno just in time for classes to start.
Viktoria brings more than acting skills to CME. She and two friends signed up for a 48 Hours challenge, where they were tasked with creating a movie in just 48 hours. They did everything – scriptwriting, sound, filming, editing, etc. Viktoria also started a small production company that operates on YouTube. There, she and her friends host a podcast called And Now Deeper.
“It’s a hobby, but we do everything – even our own music,” Viktoria said. “I really want to learn more at CME, so I can be a producer/director.”
Viktoria prefers to work on what she calls “heavy stories,” and her podcast reflects that. Among others, she has interviewed a drug dealer who became a pastor and an alcoholic who killed his spouse and doesn’t remember it. He spent 12 years in prison and now works with troubled teens.
“I like true stories and I’d like to produce fiction that is based on a true story,” she said. “Something that can move people, that changes people’s hearts.”
Viktoria is also very interested in how new technology can be used to engage with audiences. She pointed to an American series, The Chosen, which has its own app where viewers can watch and engage.
“Viktoria’s interest in finding creative ways to draw in audiences adds another dimension to our group of students,” said Matthias Settele, CEO of TV Markiza. “We’re very pleased to have her on board.”
Viktoria is just as pleased.
“It’s wonderful!” she said. “It’s amazing to meet these people who work in TV. They’re open to our ideas. They’re open to the younger generation.”