Wednesday, May 18, 2005
7 News Features: Shooting Stars
American Idol down to the final two tonight. But just because Nadia Turner lost a few weeks ago doesn't mean that South Florida is facing a shortage of talent. In tonight's special assignment report, Shireen Sandoval is introducing us to some minors with major talent. They are South Florida's shooting stars.
WSVN -- When Mozart was 9, he was writing symphonies.
When Shirley Temple was 5, she won an honorary Oscar.
And when Steven Spielberg was 16, he directed his first amateur feature film.
Finding the next big thing is no sure thing. But some South Florida youngsters are well on their way to becoming shooting stars.
For these kids, there's no kidding around. They knew what drove them before they could even drive a car.
Filmmaker Chaille Stoval: "Its something I love to do."
Chaille Stoval likes to think of himself as the next Michael Moore.
At age 15, he's already directed three critically acclaimed documentaries.
Chaille: "When I get a message across and get a group of people to understand what Iím trying to say, it is very interesting."
Chaille's film subjects range from: Why some boys would want to become Buddhist monks, to why kids should care about politics.
Chaille's mom: "He makes a lot of mistakes if you look at his movies. When he interviewed Al Gore, the tripod collapsed and Chaille's cameraman who was 11 at the time didn't know he could stop the interview, he was trying to hold up the camera and balance everything so of course, the shot is going in and out of focus and thatís all they had and they had to use it."
But what they had was good enough to be broadcast on HBO, something most of his classmates, don't even know about.
Chaille: "It's just something i do and when they find out, ill start blushing."
Chaille's mom: "He's just interested in a lot of things and he just wants to find out why things are the way they are."
For 9-year old Gabrielle Chou, the way things are couldn't sound much better.
As the youngest member of the senior division with the Florida Youth Orchestra, she plays along side other kids twice her age and twice her size.
But this up and comer has her feet planted firmly on the ground -- well almost.
Violinist Gabrielle Chou: I want to keep performing. I want to be a concert performer."
Not just any concert performer, Gabrielle has big dreams, and she just might make it.
This home-schooled sensation is musically mature beyond her years.
Not only is she a violin virtuoso, but she also plays the piano.
Myra: "She's got the gift and the inborn ability to accomplish amazing things musically."
Derek Jacobs has a gift. He'll be graduating college at an age when most people are entering college.
17-year-old college junior Derek Jacobs: "A lot of people have brought up that Iím young and Iíve accomplished so much but I think they have a respect for me because they wish they could be so young and also have accomplished so much."
Derek may look familiar. His family got a lot of attention when they became the first people implanted with a computer chip that holds your medical records.
But that's only part of the story. At age 12, he became a certified Microsoft systems engineer. At age 13, he was running his own computer consulting company. And now at age 17, he's a junior at FIU.
Derek: "After Iím done doing electrical engineering, I plan on going to law school and business school and pursuing my other hopes and dreams."
Derek's mom: "I think what he's done is heís taken advantage of all the moments in his life not to have to sit and waste time with things that arent important."
Because what is important to Derek and Gabrielle and Chaille is shooting for the stars.
Derek: "I always try to do the best at everything I can do."
Chaille: "If its not polished, Iím going to work on it until it is."
Gabrielle: "I only do it because i like it so much."
By the way, Chaille, the filmmaker, does have a new project on the way. It's entitled granny gets it on and its about senior citizens with aids.
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