The 22-year-old from Harleysville, Pa., has entered "Silence No More," a short documentary about two women who have been victims of domestic violence, in the first Carrboro Film Festival.
She sent it to the Big Sky Documentary Film Festival in Montana but didn't make the cut. Now that she's living in Carrboro, she's giving it a local try.
The festival Nov. 19 is open to anybody who "lives, works, plays or studies in Orange County," said Jackie Helvey of the Carrboro Arts Committee. The deadline for submissions is Oct. 20.
The community has the 12-year-old Flicker Film Festival. But that's open to national submissions, said filmmaker Nic Beery, who heads the Carrboro Film Committee. And it accepts only actual film -- no videos or digital movies allowed, he said.
Helvey said the new festival has few restrictions. "We want to see them all!" she said.
So far, the festival has attracted more than 60 entries.
Nick Karner, 24, of Raleigh has made more than 30 films. A graduate of the New York Film Academy in London, he has entered three films in the festival.
"The Beaver" is a comedy about two men arguing over how to act in front of their guest, Jerry Mathers, who played Theodore "Beaver" Cleaver in the 1950s TV show "Leave it to Beaver."
"Ashes" focuses on a pyromaniac who burns down her best friend's home.
And "Awake and Ovulate" is about a couple arguing over what's bigger news, terrorist attacks or "Brangelina's" baby.
"Just the fact that they're out there and making an impression [is reward enough]," Karner said.
Opas studied filmmaking at Ithaca College in New York. "Silence No More" was her thesis film. Minoring in sociology, she took classes in crisis counseling and family violence.
"Filmmaking is frustrating. It can be difficult and painful," Opas said. "but you can make something you really love. That's why I'm so proud of this one."