Monday, October 24, 2005

My Indie Memphis Weekend

This weekend has been crazy. Let's start with Friday:

I made it to the Center for Southern Folklore for the opening ceremony. Man, I saw so many people. I saw my director, Brandon Hutchison, for the first time since the advance screening I had to beg to get in. I talked with Ruby Wilson, who said that she remembered me from my days as an extra on Black Snake Moan. I met Corey Cicci, who is in the brilliant indie film Among Brothers. I met Brian Gordon, artistic director of the Nashville Film Festival. I also met Charlotte Magnussen, director of the Magnolia Independent Film Festival in Starkville, Mississippi. I met Bob Pest of the Ozark Foothills Film Festival. All of their info was passed on to my good buddy Rod Pitts ( . Hopefully, once What Goes Around is edited, we will be ready to send it out to these southern festivals. The film Loggerheads was shown that night, and it was entertaining. Bonnie Hunt was had a very dramatic role, and one of the actors, Michael Kelly, was there to engage in a Q and A session. I spoke to him briefly afterwards. I will rent Dawn of the Dead because he asked me to. After that screening, there was a party at Laura Hocking's house. She is with Oddly Buoyant Productions ( . I hobnobbed, chilled, and I met Coleman Hough, who wrote Full Frontal. I told her that I had seen parts of it. She encouraged me to rent it again and watch it all. Bevan Bell and Christine Connolly ( showed up, and the place was jumping. I even chatted with David Merrill, locations manager for Black Snake Moan. He plans to start work on a film soon, people. I left the party at midnight because I thought I had to shoot a short with Rod at 9 AM.

Saturday, we did NOT shoot. I made it to the Muvico around 1 Pm. Lavita (Vita Loca) was volunteering. Arnita Williams was in the place, as well as Vineet Thanapar, who is directing me in Mail Call. We all attended this workshop taught by Kelley Baker, the Angry Filmmaker. He distributes his movies through his website and college tours. He has no distributor. He is totally DIY and brutally honest. Then, there was a panel discussion with Morgan Fox (Away (A)wake), Coleman Hough, Kelley Baker, and others. I hung around for a bit afterwards and chatted with Tommy Kha, a young filmmaker. That kid's got some great ideas and he's gonna
do big things. I went to my friend Paul West's birthday celebration for a minute, and then I bounced back over to Muvico for the awards ceremony. Dollars and Signs got nothing! I was happy for the ones who won, blah, blah, blah. After that, I went to the Awards show after party at Earnestine and Hazel's. It was cool, but my actor friends (Lavita and Arnita) were not there, so I kinda hung around. I chilled with Bevan and Christine and Chris and Natalie Boyatt, but after a while, I felt left out. I cut out about midnight.

Sunday, I supported my good buddy Aaron Jones in the University of Memphis' production of In The Blood, which is an urban retelling of The Scarlet Letter. It was funny, but gritty and dark. Aaron was hilarious, but he normally is. I went to the U of M library and campaigned some more for my film with my former coworkers. Later, I scooped up Bryan and Rod and we went down there to support Arnita. The short film she did, Other Side of the Pillow, had its first showing. It was kinda weird, but cool. Arnita was hilarious as Grocery Lady. You should check it out this Tuesday. Man, I have really got to start writing. I think I have something to say. Tonight, I check out Natalie and Kris Boyatt's film Below Average and at 8:30, I am checking out John Harvey's Cleaver and Anthony Flessas' Silence of Mind. I am considering auditioning for these guys' next projects, and I can't wait to see these movies.

Shameless Plugs:

Arnita William's Films:

The Other Side of the Pillow"The Other Side of the Pillow" has been accepted into competition at this year's Indie Memphis Film Festival. Screening times: Tuesday 10/25 at 6:30 p.m. This is from Memphis filmmaker Sarah Fleming and her Piranha Empire Productions. It's produced by Sandi Russom and written by Pat Dugan and Spencer Pharr. Do not miss.

"Slow Down ... You're Dating Too Fast!""Slow Down ... You're Dating Too Fast!" by writer-producer- director-dp-editor-cook M. David Lee III is premiering at the IndieMemphis festival Wednesday, Oct. 26 at 6:30 p.m.The digital film uses a modified version of the Dogme95 Principles and a portion of the screenplay is based on improv with actors who developed their own characters.The story is based on an article David readin 2001 about the Speed Dating phenomenon. It's his second feature shot in the Mid-South and the third one he's had in the IndieMemphis festival.There are 32 speaking roles, all Memphis and Mississippi actors and crew. It was filmed in six days over a one-month period entirely in Memphis, Midtown, Cordova and Hernando Miss.More info is at David's web site.

Markus Seaberry's feature length debut:

Dollars & Signs In the great American city of Memphis, TN, three "businessmen" are struggling to succeed. Carlton has an image to maintain and a family to feed. Mike and Dave have regular folks paying them to stand up against corporate greed. Along the way the three will meet, heads will bump and lives will change. 2005. Director: Brandon Hutchinson. HT Narrative Feature, 78:00.This film will be shown on Thursday, October 27, at 6:30 pm at the Muvico Peabody Place. The admission is $6.00. Please support. My mama gon' be there, and you
should, too!

Dollars and Signs Premiere Countdown: 3 Days and Counting


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