Marcos teacher credited with launching alum’s film career

Travis Rust says he got his inspiration while still in high school.

Opening Dec. 23 at Harkins Valley Art theater in Tempeis Footprints, a mystery tale in which a woman wakes up with amnesia in front Grauman’s Chinese, and searches for her identity on Hollywood Boulevard.

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The independent film’s editor is a Kyrene Corridor native by the name of Travis Rust, who credits two experiences at Marcos De Niza High School with guiding him to his current occupation.

“There was a teacher at Marcos named Art Draper,” recalls Rust, by phone fromCalifornia. “I don’t know if he’s still there, but he taught history and social studies. He said, ‘I know some of you guys don’t like to speak in front of the class, you get nervous’ so he allowed us to do a video project instead.

“A group of a few of us shot photos from books, and wrote a script around it. I did the editing, and I just got hooked on it.”

The second experience was also history-related:

“I saw Lawrence of Arabia. It was the first time I ever noticed how editing can affect a movie. I saw it on VHS, worst possible format. My parents fell asleep, but I was just hooked.”

Rust went on to study film atScottsdaleCommunity Collegejust as the school’s program was gaining national notice.

“I felt like I made a really wise choice because I didn’t go to, like, NYU or USC, because all the people I know who are editing are still in debt.”

Rust ended up working steadily, on everything from feature films to “reality” TV, ranging from The Real Housewives of New York to the History Channel’s How Many People Does It Take?

Of Footprints, Rust notes, “It was edited at my place,” in the evenings after another editing job. “I’d work a full day, and then work a full day on this.”

Editing Footprints, directed by Steven Peros, was a challenge, says Rust.

“It was shot pretty quickly, all on the streets ofHollywood, which sort of limited the choices, because of people in the background gawking into the camera. There’d be a take with fantastic acting, and then there’d be somebody in the background saying, ‘Is that a camera?’”

Editor’s note: Art Draper retired from Marcos de Niza in 2001.



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