“All About The Afterglow” Announced As Next Feature for Jonny Walls and David Foy Bauer

Los Angeles: October 23, 2016

Writer/Director JONNY WALLS and Producer/Actor DAVID FOY BAUER have teamed up on an up-coming independent feature film, entitled “ALL ABOUT THE AFTERGLOW.” The film deals with two soon-to-be stepbrothers as they road trip up the California Coastline to their parent’s wedding. Along the way they encounterIndigogVideo_02.00_04_27_03.Still004 eccentric characters and various roadblocks that cause them to rethink the trip, their parent’s union as well as their own lives.

Afterglow will be Walls and Bauer’s second collaboration after working on Cineline Production’s 2015 comedy feature, “Couch Survivor.” That film has been picked up for world-wide release by Glass House Distribution.

Joining Walls again as Director of Photography will be IndigogVideo_02.00_04_52_15.Still005MARK FARNEY, another “Couch Survivor” alumni. Other cast announcements include NATHAN CHAMPION, MELISSA LAWLOR, NICCO ANNAN, SIGFRIED TIEBER and ANGIE LISTER.

“All About the Afterglow” begins shooting October 30, 2016 in Los Angeles and San Francisco, CA.

Hero Of The Underworld – Film Review

Review by: Peter Foldy

A gritty character study, HERO OF THE UNDERWORLD,  slowly draws you in and doesn’t let go as it exposes the lives of several down on their luck characters living and working in New York City.

“Dylan” (TOM MALLOY)  is the likeable, quick thinking overnight manager at a chic, upscale downtown hotel. Clearly heTom Malloy in Hero of the Underworld - 2 should by now have advanced higher on the ladder of success, both at his job and with life in general, but Dylan struggles with demons that won’t let go. He is a heroin addict whose girl friend hung herself  in his apartment and Dylan is burdened by the guilt. Abandoned by his his family and struggling to hold on to his job, Dylan is a pained and desperate man.

When a young woman, “Holly” ( NICOLE FOX) is badly beaten at the hotel, Dylan takes it upon himself to find her and save her from the drug underworld that he is quite familiar with. This leads to a bout of regret and self examinationNicole Fox in Hero of the Underworld as Dylan tries to overcome his demons, somehow convincing himself that Holly can help save him.

Ably directed by JOHN VINCENT, the film crackles with nervous energy and cutting edge humor. It also portrays a revealing look behind the scenes of hotel management–how they handle double bookings, who gets preferential treatment and why.

As you might imagine, money always talks.

Though lacking in some production values due to it’s budgetary restrictions, there are strong quality moments and stand out performances in this otherwise well made indie.

DAVID JOSH LAWRENCENicole Fox and Tom Malloy in Hero of the Underworld - 2 is likeable as the caustic hotel clerk, “Jarrod.”

LISA VARGA is convincing as an ill-fated call girl working to support her 9 year old daughter.

QUINTON AARON, lead in the film, “The Blind Side” (opposite Sandra Bullock) brings some star power as the drug dealer, “Tino,” as does the always impressive, CATHERINE MARY STEWART, playing a woman who has been moved out of her hotel room without her permission.

But this is Tom Malloy’s vehicle. Giving a believable, heart-felt performance as the wounded “Dylan,” he hits all the right notes. Malloy carries the film and helps elevate “Hero of the Underworld” to the top of this year’s indie releases.  Raw and emotional, “Hero of the Underworld” is a winner.

Available through Gravitas Ventures on November 14, 2016 to outlets everywhere.

 

 

 

It’s All In The Family With Michael and Stephanie Katherine Grant

September 20, 2016

To be successful in Hollywood, you need a team around you. A powerful team. Young actors,  Michael and Stephanie Katherine Grant, who hail from Tennessee  and have been in Hollywood making the rounds since 2010 are more than a team. They’re family.

But the siblings who have made an impact with appearances on shows such as “The Secret Life of The American Teenager” and “The Goldbergs” were not content to just be in front of the camera. They have recently branched out into writing, producing and directing.michael grant

Now you may think there’s nothing impressive about that in a town full of multi-hyphenates, but consider the fact that Michael is only 21 and Stephanie Katherine a mere 16.

The dynamic duo recently completed their first production called, “Dominion,” an impressive, well acted, well directed short film that is sure to get traction for it’s talented young creators.

An abstract story that deal with different layers of consciousness, the film has the look of a well funded feature, even though it was made with money Michael and Stephanie raised on their own. The pair found and hired the best film crew available and the results here speak for themselves.

In a male oriented world it took the film crew stephanie katherine granta minute to realize that teenaged Stephanie Katherine was a capable filmmaker worthy of  helming the project.

“At first people were directing their questions to me and kind of ignoring my sister” says Michael, “but eventually they got the message that Stephanie Katherine was an equal contributor and co-director, in fact she was the one who came up with the story in the first place. Soon she was running the set like a pro.”

Not bad for a sixteen year old.

Beyond co-writing and co-directing, Michael also scored the project, (he happens to be a classically trained pianist) while Stephanie Katherine edited.

“Dominion” is now making the festival rounds. First up is the Calgary International Film Festival which kicks off on September 20, 2016. The film will screen there on September 24th, at TELUS Spark, located at 220 George Drive, NE, Calgary, Canada.

Dominion CJFF Still 3

So what’s next for the Grant kids?

“More writing and directing is definitely in the cards,” says Stephanie Katherine. They are turning “Dominion” into a feature film script and also developing others projects.

If you get the chance to meet this talented and ambitious brother and sister team, you’ll see that no is not an option here. Film domination is their ultimate ambition and from the look of their first project, they seem bound to succeed.

16th Anual Polish Film Festival To Open October 13th, 2015

Los Angeles: October 9, 2015

Founder and Festival Director, Vladek Juszkiewicz announced in West Los Angeles today that the 16th Annual Polish Film Festival, celebrating the greatest achievements of Polish filmmakers, will open in L.A. on October 13th and run through October, 22nd, 2015.

Festival Director, Vladek Juszkiewicz

Festival Director, Vladek Juszkiewicz

“With Pawel Pawlikowski’s film, IDA winning last year’s Academy Award for Best Foreign Film, this year’s festival promises another wonderful selection of over sixty five features, short films, animation and documentaries,” said Mr. Juszkiewicz,  “many of the North American, international or world premieres.”

The event kicks off with THE CITIZEN (Obywatel) by Jerzy Stuhr on October 13, 2015 with a star-studded gala during which both Polish and American film makers will walk the red carpet at Hollywood’s legendary Egyptian Theater. Angelinos may enjoy  subsequent  screenings at the Laemmle’s NoHo 7 and Royal Theaters as well as the  CSUN Armer Theatre.

“We’re trying to accommodate film lovers from both sides of this hill,” stated Mr. Juszkiewicz at today’s press conference. “The festival will also be presenting sixteen films by female directors this year.”

Polish filmmakers expected attend the festival include: Lukasz Simlat (actor), Aleksander Gruz (composer), Andrzej Cichocki (director), Joanna Jasinska-Koronkiewicz (director), Adam Bobik (actor), Tomasz Kot (actor), Image 4Lukasz Palkowski (director), Pawel Lucewicz (composer), Paul Bieda (composer), Tomasz Blachnicki (director), Anna Prochniak (actress), Jan Komasa (director), Magdalena Lazarkiewicz (director), Marian Dziedziel (actor) and Jacek Bromski (director).

The highlights of the program are: ANATOMY OF EVIL (Anatomia zla) by Jacek Bromski, BODY (Cialo) by Malgorzata Szumowska,  GODS (Bogowie) by Lukasz Palkowski, WARSAW 44 (Miasto 44) by Jan Komasa,  CARTE BLANCHE by Jacek Lusinski, THE SHADOW FOREST (Las cieni) by Andrzej Cichocki, IT’S QUITE TRUE! (To pewna wiadomosc!) by Joanna Jasinska-Koronkiewicz, CALL ME MARIANNA (Mow mi Marianna) by Karolina Bielawska and KARSKI by Magdalena Lazarkiewicz.

Screenings of film made abroad by Polish filmmakers, with Polish talent, or with Polish subjects will include: JOURNEY TO ROME by Tomasz Mielnik, ONCE MY MOTHER by Sophia Turkiewicz, AGAINST NIGHT by Stefan Kubicki,  IT HAPPENED AGAIN by Wojciech Fry-Lewis, MESSIAH by Mark Grabianowski, SHADOWS by Paul Kowalski  and THE VIGILANTE by Matthew K. Firpo.

At the Gala Opening on October 13th, the following awards are to be presented.

Adam Bratcher Music Debut Award to: Aleksander Gruz for WARSAW BY NIGHT, by Natalia Koryncka-Gruz.

The Pola Negri Award will be presented to Andy Garcia for his collaboration with Polish filmmakers: Oscar winning

Actor, Andy Garcia

Actor, Andy Garcia

composer  Jan A. P. Kaczmarek and production designer and producer Waldemar Kalinowski.

Piotr Lazarkiewicz Award for Young Talent will be presented to two young, talented Polish actors, Anna Prochniak and Adam Bobik.

Jury members for the Polish Film Festival this year include Priscilla Barnes, Bruce Locke, James Mathers, Jennifer Taylor, Ben Berkowitz, Susana Casares, Erik Friedl, Tchavdar Georgiev, Jacek Kropinski, Mike Libonati, Tom Mclean, Stephan Szpak-Fleet, Vazrik Der-Sahakian, Rachel O’Meara, James Ulmer and Bijan Tehrani. They will present awards for Best Feature, Best Animation, Best Documentary and Best Short film.

The full film program for the Festival can be found on the website: http://www.polishfilmla.org

For further information, contact: Vladek Juszkiewicz

818/982-8827

info@polishfilmla.org

 

Two Steps Forward For Indie Film

By Peter Foldy

Had the pleasure to see a very cool, low key indie thriller last night called “Two Step” written and directed by first time feature director, Alex R. Johnson.  The story deals with James, (Skyy Moore) a young college drop out who has a couple of very bad days after he becomes a victim of a home invasion robbery.

As the film opens, Jamestwostepjamesdotbarnice arrives at his grandmother’s house, his only living relative, to find her dying of a  stroke. Before long he learns that Granny has left him eighty five thousand dollars and her house. James is suddenly flush with cash.

He makes friends with a kindly neighbor, a former ballet dancer called Dot (Beth Broderick) who becomes something of a mother figure and his only friend in  town.

Meanwhile a psychotic low life criminal called Webb ( James Landry Hebert) has just gotten out of jail and is very quickly back to his old ways.  Webb is working a scam where he calls elderly people and pretends to be their troubled grandson who needs a loan. Most of the time the scam backfires, but once in a while it doesn’t.

Webb discovers that he has been dumped by his girlfriend, Amy (Ashley Rae Spillers) a girl who he had beaten up.  Amy  is now Two_Step_credit_Photo_Courtesy_of_quotTwo_Stepquotshacked up with Webb’s former employer Duane (Jason Douglas) and Webb is pissed. He owes Duane a large amount of cash and is quickly given an ultimatum. Pay up and get out of town or have your ass kicked by one of Duane’s heavies.

As Webb continues his calls to the elderly in order to find money he and James randomly connect.

It is a tense wait for the two to meet up in person and when they do the outcome is bloody and violent. Webb soon figures out that James has an inheritance and knows he has hit the jackpot. Now how to get a hold of the cash. James only has a $900 a day ATM limit.

More suspense and violence are in store till James and Webb’s destinies  collide for the last time and the third act sees the rampage come to an end. It’s a relief when it does. Johnson makes you care for these characters,images especially the innocent James.

“Two Step” is a finely crafted character driven thrill ride that keeps the tension on a low boil. That’s not to say the film doesn’t also have it’s “boo” moments that will have you jumping out of your seat.

The entire cast, all Texas locals, are excellent here, right down the the under fives. The film perfectly captures the tonality of suburban Austin, Texas where it was shot.

“Two Step” is also an inspiration to aspiring filmmakers. Made on a low budget it has garnered great reviews from Variety, The Hollywood Reporter and The New York Times.  It’s success shows that determination and a “no is not an option” attitude will get things done.  It’s a film made for art’s sake and writer/director Alex Johnson’s win here is also a win for indie crime and thriller fans everywhere.

“Two Step” opens Friday, August 7th at the Arena Theater in Los Angeles with VOD to follow in September.  With beautifully stylized cinematography by Andy Lilien this is well worth seeing on the big screen.

Production: La Chima Films
Cast: Beth Broderick, James Landry Hébert, Skyy Moore, Jason Douglas, Ashley Rae Spillers
Director/screenwriter: Alex R. Johnson
Producers: Alex R. Johnson, Paul Biedrzycki, Pat Cassidy, Charles Mulford
Director of photography: Andy Lilien
Production designer: Claire M. White
Editor: Benjamin Moses Smith
Costume designer: Rachel Marie Jones
Composer: Andrew Kenny
Casting: Beth Sepko

Where: The Arena Cinema 1625 N Las Palmas Ave, Hollywood, CA 90028  (93 minutes)  Not Rated.

Showtimes, Friday, August 7th. 7:30 pm SOLD OUT.

Saturday, August 8, 4:00 pm, 5:30 pm

Sunday, August 9, 4:30 pm, 7:55 pm

Monday, August 10, 9:30 pm

Tuesday, August 11, 8:00 pm

Wednesday, August 12, 6 pm

Thursday, August 13, 9:30 pm

 

Give Ryan Reynolds Another Chance

THE VOICES

Film Review by Mark Salcido

THE VOICES is a black comedy drama released in 2014 directed by Marjane Satrapi and written by Michael R. Perry. It Stars Ryan Reynolds, Gemma Arterton, Anna Kendrick, and Jacki Weaver.

Now before you scuff and exit this site, let’s get a few things over with. Yes, we all know Green Latern, R.I.P.D and anything big budget with Ryan Reynolds was shit. But hold on, this is pretty good.

The film tells the story of Jerry Hickfang THE-VOICES(Reynolds), an upbeat yet shy man who suffers from hallucinations in his everyday life. When the film starts out, you get a strong feel of a John Waters inspiration; bright colors with everyone having a hokey suburban attitude. I mean come on, the employee coveralls at the warehouse where Jerry works in are bright pink. So as the story progress , you find out that Jerry hears voices from his pets, the dog; Bosco and the cat; Mr. Whiskers. Hokey attitude, upbeat lead character, animals talking; shit you might have just walked into a Disney movie by accident…no. This movie takes that wholesome idea and flips it to a comedic twist with a bit of real world problems on the state of mental health.

Jerry has a crush on Fiona, the hot British chick from accounting played by Gemma Arterton.  But Jerry is seen around the company as a “weirdo’. When circumstances lead to Fiona and THE VOICESGemma taking a drive for a midnight snack, sparks begin fly for a possible romance between the two…until the deer comes into play.  Now before we touch up on the deer, Jerry saw Fiona’s beauty as angelic.  Jerry in his way, tries to compliment Fiona with a cutesy biblical joke but it backfires and comes off as weird.  Enter the deer wondering in the middle of the road and meeting with the front end of Jerry’s speeding truck. This is when the movie gets dark and only gets darker.

Jerry does a mercy kill for the deer, Fiona freaks out and a parody of a classic slasher film chases ensues.  A struggle for solidarity between the two occurs and “oops” Fiona ends up stabbed. What is Jerry to do? Mercy kill.

This is where “The Voices” from Bosco and Mr. Whisker (both voiced by Reynolds himself) come into play.  The personalities of the pets give us conformation what we all believed.  Dogs are loyal and cats are dicks.  The pets serve as the comedic voice of reasons and in some way, maybe the inner desires of Jerry.  Side note: Depending on what kind of person hero_TheVoices_2015_1you are, you’ll decide which animal to agree with; which I would think, was the director or the writer’s intention.  If it was by a happy accident, 10 points on that one.

Now you might be wondering, “isn’t he seeking help?”  Jacki Weaver plays Jerry’s therapist but it seems the message the director might be sending is that a therapist can only do so much for their patients.  The extent of the therapist help goes as far as, “are you taking the meds” along with “you should take them if you want stay better”.

Reynolds…look I get it.  He’s handsome, charming and some might think he shouldn’t be in the role of a serial killer.  But if you really think about it, those are some of the traits of a serial killer.  But not in a Charles Mason way.  You actually become more sympathetic towards the character and the misfortune he has endured because of his and his family’s history of mental disorder.  Without the anti-psychotics, Jerry life is full of color and joy. This masks the severity and depressive realization of his life. T he way the-voices-anna-kendrick-ryan-reynolds-1he was living; I wouldn’t want to take them either.  But enough of all the serious shit, let’s get back to the comedy.

There are quite a few chuckles in the film.  Jerry’s delusion is at its strongest when his victims begin to talk to him after having their heads loped off and stored in the freezer.  Once Fiona is killed, her severed head demands a friend or friends to keep her company.  Enter Lisa, her co-worker played by Anna Kendrick and Alison played by Ella Smith.  Anna Kendrick does her cuties typical self but it works for this type of film.  Ella is more of a background character but is more cautious of Jerry than Lisa, who is actually “Ga Ga” for Jerry and thinks he just needs to be given a chance. Poor poor Lisa.

On the technical side, The-Voices-posterthere are no crazy or amazing shots that will stick with you after the credits roll.  The first kill scene has a great touch of the night/fogy/creepy classic murderer in the wood look and feel to it.  It does have a low budget vibe to it but it works for this story.   The time setting feels mid to late 90s but that might just be the Northeast of America location.  To further give evidence that maybe the director or writer is a John Waters fan is the end leading up to the credits.  Without giving too much away I’ll just give you two words: musical number. Not too extravagant but it goes into the realm of “What the fuck”.

So if you want to explore the realm of dark comedy with drama and a decent cast with a bit of acting that doesn’t feel like the cast did it just for a paycheck, jump on in. Reynolds, like in the film The Nines, is good when he’s given a decent script with room to experiment.  You probably won’t race to your Redbox or VOD, but if this pops on your radar and want to shed a little over an hour and a half of your time give it shot.

From TV To Indie Films, Michael Grant Is Doing It All

by Peter Hughes

Young actor, MICHAEL GRANT  pulls his black Mini Cooper into a parking spot at the same time I am trying to find a place to park myself in a dark garage below a Beverly Hills cafe.

“Hey, Michael,” I call out, never having met the man in person, but having recently seen his acting chops in the fine, new, currently unreleased drama, “Fair Haven,” he looks much like he did in the movie.

We shake hands and head 10659095_520949571370766_6154814187858732891_oupstairs to order breakfast, finding ourselves relegated to an outside table where not even the hot, high octane coffee I am sipping keeps me warm on this unusually brisk morning in March.

My early rapport with Michael also seems just a little bit on the cool side.  He is soft spoken and seemingly introverted, but as we play the get to know you game his sweet side begins to seep through and it doesn’t take long to warm up to this kid.

His backstory is not all that unusual. The son of a doctor in Tennessee, he and his sister Stephanie, along with their mom, Anna, made the move to California five years ago, initially to launch Stephanie into the world of acting.  A classically trained pianist and lifelong musician, then 14-year-old Michael also decided that, since he was in Hollywood,  he too might give acting a try.  He soon landed an agent and his early auditions quickly gave him the confidence that he was looking for.

“It was when I came very close to landing a lead on a Disney show called, “Kickin’ It” that I 10456086_478567745608949_7788342373032352340_nrealized I can do this,” he explains.  Now, five years and many acting workshops later, Michael is on an upward trajectory with strong supporting roles in the features, “Where Hope Grows” in which he plays a cruel bully, and “Still Life,” an indie film dealing with high school kids figuring out their future.  “Where Hope Grows” recently premiered at the Dallas Film Festival and has since been picked up for theatrical distribution by Roadside Attractions.

Perhaps his most valuable credit to date has been as a series regular on seasons 4 and 5 of “The Secret Life of The American Teenager” a show that has not only given him some financial stability, but has also brought him some fans.  He has since guest starred on various other TV shows,  slowly building an impressive resume for a young actor who has only just turned 19.

But the purpose of our meeting today is to talk about “Fair Haven,” a film where Michael gets to do the heavy lifting.  He plays the role of “James,” a musically prodigy who has been sent by his father to ex-gay-conversion therapy where they try to scare the gay out of him and return him to his family full of Jesus.  Stopping in to see his father on his way to study at the prestigious music academy, Berklee, the character discovers that his old man has spent his college fund, virtually trapping the boy in the narrow-minded confines of his small town.  James goes to work for his dad on the farm and begins the charade of dating girls.  Along the way he runs into his best friend and one time boyfriend, “Charlie,” well portrayed 10387167_487170941415296_5077640384864648015_oanother young actor, Josh Green.

So what was it about this project that appealed to him, I ask?

“The story by the film’s director Kerstin Karlhuber and the script by Jack Bryant was so well written that it immediately spoke to me.  After reading it I put myself on tape. I read some scenes and played the piano and sent it off to the casting director.  As luck would have it I landed the role and soon found myself in the town of Victor, New York making this movie.

And how was the shoot?  “Short and fast paced.  I was in most of the scenes.  I had very little down time and when I did I kept mostly to myself.  This was my first lead and I knew the responsibility I was a carrying but truthfully, by the end of the film I was emotionally drained.  I remember calling my sister from my hotel room and telling her I don’t know if I can muster the energy for my remaining scenes, I was that exhausted, but somehow I did and we got it done.”

Having seen a rough cut of this film, I can say that Michael’s portrayal MG (1)of “James” is poignant and vulnerable, a trait that he was now allowing me a glimpse of as our outdoor breakfast chat continued.

We switch gears to talk about his life in L.A.  How does he spend his time?

“I study.  Watch a lot of classic movies.  My parents recently gave me a boxed set of films from the 50s and 60s.  I loved them, especially enjoy foreign films.  Truffaut, Godard, Andrei Tarkovski.  Brilliant directors.”  What about hobbies or pastimes?  “Basketball.  I’m a big NBA fan.”

So what is it about acting that made him put his classical music training on the backburner for now?  “Acting is a craft of the heart,” he tells me.  “It’s my chance for real artistic expression.   Although the television work I’ve done is important, I hope to be able to continue my current momentum as an actor in indie films.  I think features give me a chance to be a part of perhaps more meaningful stories. I’ve definitely grown as a person doing these last three films.  On “Still Life” in particular I made some amazing friends.  People I hope to know for a long time to come.”

So whose career would he likeFairHaven_Poster_03 to emulate?  Which directors would he love to work with?  “Terrence Malick for sure.  I loved “The Tree of Life.”  Wish I could have been in that one.   Chris Nolan, David Fincher, those are probably some other favorites that come to mind.  As far as actors, I really admire Ryan Gosling’s work and the way he has managed his career.  Andrew Garfield is another actor I admire and reaching back a few years, Timothy Hutton who was so brilliant as a high school kid in Robert Redford’s “Ordinary People.”

With the temperature dropping we pay our bill and stand in the parking lot to warm up in the sunshine as we say our goodbyes.  I’ve enjoyed this interview.  Michael’s turned out to be a cool guy who is setting the foundations for a long lasting acting and music career.

I climb in my car and follow him out of the garage.  He zips away in his little Mini Cooper, perhaps to continue chasing the dream.

From where I’m sitting I’m willing to bet he finds it.

Visit Michael Grant’s Facebook page HERE.

Learn more about FAIR HAVEN on Facebook.

Three Movies to See This Weekend

May 16, 2014

Here are our movie recommendations for the weekend of May 17, 2014.

1.  GODZILLA

Yes, it may sound like another cheezy video game movie, but this Godzilla actually has heart.  The story is compelling, the action non stop.Spanish_Godzilla_2014_Poster  Don’t listen to the haters who tell you there is not enough of the G monster.  He is there when you need him, and he does save the world.  The cast in Godzilla is strong,  especially young Aaron Taylor-Johnson and veteran actor Bryan Cranston.  If you are looking for a fun ride with huge special effects, this is the one to see.

2. MILLION DOLLAR ARM

Writer, Thomas McCarthy has crafted a well written Disney film that touches the emotions and delivers a sweet, well told true story in the process.  Directed by Craig Gillespie and starring John Hamm as a down on his luck sports agent who comes up with the brilliant idea of recruiting Indian cricket players Million+Dollar+Arm+Film+Posterand grooming them to be baseball stars.  After holding a nation wide contest in India he returns to the US with two wet behind the ears kids who have barely been out of their village, let alone to L.A.  Will they ultimately deliver?  Check out this congenial film to find out.  Be prepared to laugh and maybe shed a few tears in the process.

3.  IDA

From acclaimed director Pawel Pawlikowski comes this new Polish language film set in 1962 about a young apprentice nun (played by stunning newcomer Agata Trzebuchowska in her very first role), who is about to take her vows.  Before she does however, her Mother Superior insists that Ida visits her aunt Wanda, (Agata Kulesza) who lives in the city.  Ida soon learns that she is in fact Jewish and a holocaust survivor.  Ida and her aunt, a hard drinking, chain smoking judge who has sent people to the gallows, set out to find the grave-site of Ida’s ida-posterparents, and in the process discovers the truth as to how Ida’s parents died.  Ida experiences life and love, ultimately coming to terms with what she really wants out of life.  Not at all predictable, Ida is a beautifully made film about a deep and disturbing subject.  It has some of the most visual and compelling black & white images from cinematographers Ryszard Lenczewsi and Lukasz Zalwe have seen on film in recent times.  Hopefully the Academy will remember this one come award season.

 

 

Speeding Driver Kills Two at SXSW

Austin, TX: March 13, 2014

A driver attempting to evade a drunk driving stop sped past a barricade on Red River Street and plowed into dozens of SXSW revelers, killing two and injuring 23 in a horrific scene here early Thursday morning, police said.

Red River Street is home to many popular clubs hosting South by Southwest music showcases, had beenIMG_0543 closed to motorists and was crowded with music fans waiting to get into the Mohawk nightclub.11:50 a.m.

Police Chief Art Acevedo said the man, identified by the American-Statesman (www.statesman.com) as Rashad Charjuan Owens, 21, of Killeen, will face two charges of capital murder and 23 counts of aggravated assault.

Police also clarified who was killed in the incident.

One of the dead, a man from the Netherlands, was riding a bicycle near the intersection of 11th and Red River streets when struck. The other, an Austin woman on a moped, also was killed. Both were pronounced dead at the scene, officials said.

Another man on the moped is in stable condition, Acevedo said.

Photo by:Bryan Beasley

 

 

IFTA Members Take Home 10 Oscars

Los Angeles, CA – March 3, 2014

Members of the Independent Film & Televisions Alliance (IFTA®) again produced and distributed the most critically acclaimed films of the year for 2013, as Member films captured ten Oscars® at the 2014 Academy Awards®, earning top honors in feature movies-oscars-2014-press-room-spike-jonzecategories including Best Picture, Actor in a Leading Role, Actress in a Leading Role, Original Screenplay and Adapted Screenplay.

This marks the 11th time in the past 12 years that the Oscar® for “Best Picture” has gone to an  IFTA Member film, as 12 Years A Slave (2014) joins The Artist (2012), The King’s Speech (2011) and The Hurt Locker (2010) among recent winners.  Below is the full list of Academy Award-winning IFTA Member films from this year’s ceremony:
(*Please note, companies listed are IFTA Member Companies involved in the film,)

Best Picture
12 Years A Slave (Lionsgate/Summit Entertainment)

Actor in a Leading Role
Matthew McConaughey – Dallas Buyers Club (Focus Features, Voltage Pictures)

Actress in a Leading Role
Cate Blanchett – Blue Jasmine (Focus Features)

Original Screenplay
Spike Jonze – Her (Panorama Media)

Adapted Screenplay
John Ridley – 12 Years A Slave (Lionsgate/Summit Entertainment)

Actor in a Supporting Role
Jared Leto – Dallas Buyers Club (Focus Features, Voltage Pictures)

Actress in a Supporting Role
Lupita Nyong’o – 12 Years A Slave (Lionsgate/Summit Entertainment)

Documentary Feature
20 Feet from Stardom (The Weinstein Company)

Foreign Language Film
The Great Beauty – Italy (Pathe International)

Makeup and Hairstyling
Adruitha Lee & Robin Mathews – Dallas Buyers Club (Focus Features, Voltage Pictures)

For more information about IFTA, contact Sunshine/Sachs