MAY 2003 NEWSLETTER

LAST CALL FOR ENTRIESSUMMER WORKSHOPS - WFF ANNOUNCES GO FURTHER PREMIERE - MILWAUKEE, MINNESOTA SCORES AT CANNES - NOWHERE TO RUN DOC - MEMORIAL DAY SCREENINGS - RACHEL KEMPSON PASSES AWAYAT A THEATER NEAR YOU - MOVIE REVIES WITH SYD M - VIDEO STORE RELEASES - NOT SO SILENT AUCTION NEWS - AMERIBAG - FCC MEDIA RULING AROUND THE CORNER - WFF ADVERTISING OPPORTUNITIES


LAST CALL FOR ENTRIES
The 'fiercely independent' Woodstock Film Festival is now accepting submissions to its 4th annual five-day program, September 17-21 in Woodstock, NY, the most infamous small town in the world. Categories and awards include: Feature narrative, Feature Doc, Short, Student Short, Animated Short, Short Doc, Best Cinematography (The Haskell Wexler Award), and Best Score (The Elmer Bernstein Award). DEADLINE: June 15. Call (845) 679-4265, e-mail info@woodstockfilmfestival.com or visit Woodstock Film Festival 

 

WOODSTOCK SUMMER WORKSHOPS LAUNCHED

FILMMAKERS SUMMER WORKSHOP/RETREAT

The Woodstock Film Festival is offering a summer film retreat from July 11-13 with leading industry members including Peter Saraf (Adaptation, Truth About Charlie, Zachary Sklar (JFK), Ron Nyswaner (Philadelphia, Soldier's Girl),), Gill Holland (Spring Forward, Hurricane Streets) and Sabine Hoffman (Personal Velocity) and other surprise guests. The retreat is limited to 10 participants and includes all workshops, transportation via Amtrak from NYC, meals, Friday night square dance and a two-night stay at the historic Byrdliffe Colony.  For additional information visit upcoming events.

BILL PLYMPTON ANIMATION MASTER-CLASS
On July 12 , Oscar nominated animator Bill Plympton (Mutant Aliens, I Married a Stranger Person. The Tune) will hold a six-hour master class on animation. The course will feature Bill's work, drawing demonstrations, and frank discussions about what it takes to become and survive as an independent animator. For additional information, visit upcoming events.

SCREENWRITING WORKSHOPS
During the months of June thru August, the Woodstock Film Festival is presenting a six-week screenwriting workshop with screenwriter/journalist Lisa Katzman, who presently teaches screenwriting in the Graduate Film Program at Tisch School of the Arts, New York University. The goal of the workshop is to complete  a feature length screenplay. The workshop is limited to 8 people per session. For additional information, visit click here


ken kesey and woody harrelson (further and go further)

Ron Mann
WOODSTOCK FILM FESTIVAL
ANNOUNCES EAST COAST PREMIERE
OF RON MANN's GO FURTHER


The Woodstock Film Festival announced that it would host the East Coast & New York premiere of Go Further, an on-the-road documentary featuring actor & activist Woody Harrelson, and directed by award-winning documentary filmmaker Ron Mann.

Described as an "Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test on Tofu," Go Further follows  Harrelson and his modern day "merry pranksters," on a consciousness-raising tour extolling sustainable development and conscious living in an environmentally sound world.  The film features appearances and music by Dave Mathews, Natalie Merchant, Ken Kesey, Bob Weir, Michael Franti, Anthony Keidis, Medeski, Martin & Wood and String Cheese Incident.  At its root, Go Further explores the idea that the single individual is the key to large-scale transformational change. For the full story click here


Milwaukee, Minnesota

MILWAUKEE MINNESOTA

The prizewinners of the 42nd edition of the Cannes Film Festival Critics week were announced on Saturday, May 24. "Milwaukee Minnesota," directed by Allan Mindel and co-produced by Woodstock's very own Michael Brody (a Woodstock Film Festival supporter since it's inception), swept up the Jeune critique feature award.

On top of racking up the award, Alliance Atlantis acquired all international rights for the quirky comedy about ice fishermen, which stars Troy Garity, Bruce Dern, and Randy Quaid.

Upon his return to Woodstock, Brody had this to say about his experience in Cannes, "I'm thrilled about it all, but I always knew something good would happen.  There where a lot of tragic twists and turns along the way, with everything that could go wrong going wrong, but this is a people business and if your working with the right people anything is possible."


screenshot

NOWHERE TO RUN
Tobe Carey’s documentary on Indian Point recognized in Houston film fest

By Jim Gordon (courtesy of the Woodstock Times)

Woodstocker Tobe Carey has long been familiar with issues related to nuclear power, but he said working on his new short documentary film, Nowhere to Run, about security measures at Indian Point Nuclear Power Plant in Westchester County, was an eye opening experience. “I guess what I learned most was that plant security needs a very steep upgrade,” says Carey. “It’s all very blasé; ‘It can’t happen’ here was the attitude that we found while we were doing the whole thing.” (read the full story)



"Come, Lovely"


"Cat Dance"


"Fred's Box"


"Rhythmn"

WOODSTOCK'S MEMORIAL DAY SCREENINGS

Memorial day weekend in Woodstock this year was party central as usual. What set this year apart from past years was the number of film release parties by area filmmakers.

May 25 marked the premiere of "Come Lovely." The 35mm short is the result of a  collaboration between director Jake Davis and producers/actors Jason Downs and Sophia Raab.  After meeting at the Woodstock Film Festival in 2002, the three recognized their common vision and quickly joined forces in hopes of making a film that explores the range of emotion involved in transformation, loving and letting go. All involved in the production have very high hopes that the public will enjoy the film and expect to see Come Lovely on the big screen in festivals all over the world. For more info, visit http://www.comelovely.com

 

Guests at the James Cox Gallery were treated to a preview of the Artist Experience, a TV pilot shot in the area last year with help from the Woodstock Film Commission. The high quality of the HDTV shoot and the reaction of crowd bodes well for pilot.

Woodstocker Julianna Cox, and Aaron Hughes followed with their thesis films from the School of Visual Arts internationally recognized animation department.

Julianna's stop motion animation film "Cat Dance," a Dusty Award winner, featured cats constructed out of chenille pipe cleaners, a technique she has been mastering since she was a child. According to her father James, Juliana also mastered the technique of being a cat at a young age, even going so far as to cutting a hole for her tail in her clothing. Of her technique, Cox says "I believe it (the use of pipe cleaners) gives them their own unique character, and allows them to have almost unlimited flexibility in their movements.  The main cat's name is Chainsaw, and he likes to dance."

Aaron Hughes' funny and poignant "Fred's Box" followed. Shot using traditional animation, the film is the story about a man who innocently and unwillingly discovers the truth, when he is pulled into a world he did not know exists- an infinite world inside of a box.

Both films will be presented at this fall's Woodstock Film Festival.

 

Later that evening at the Brenowitz residence, folks screened a preview of "Rhythmn; The Universal Language" by SUNY/New Paltz grad, Matt Brenowitz. The documentary identifies rhythm in just about every area imaginable and organizes these elements in a fashion that convey a sense of rhythm within itself. For more info, email Matt at bodi@ulster.net .


RACHEL KEMPSON
Actress Rachel Kempson, the matriarch of the Redgrave acting dynasty passed away Saturday, May 24 of natural causes while staying at the home of granddaughter Natasha Richardson's home in Millbrook, NY.  She was 92.

Kempson married actor Michael Redgrave, in 1935, and became Lady Redgrave when he was knighted by Queen Elizabeth in 1959. She is survived by her children Vanessa, Lynn and Corin Redgrave, and grandchildren Natasha Richardson, Joely Richardson and Jemma Redgrave.

Kempson's  moved from the stage to a film career in 1941. Her vast credits included roles in "Tom Jones," "The Charge of the Light Brigade" (both directed by son-in-law Tony Richardson) "Georgy Girl," and  "Out of Africa" .

AT A THEATER NEAR YOU

WASHINGTON HEIGHTS
Alfredo de Villa's "Washington Heights" opens theatrically.

The story of Carlos, a young illustrator burning to escape his Latino neighborhood to make a splash in New York City’s downtown comic book scene. When he is forced to put his dream on hold, he comes to understand that if he is to make it as a comic artist, he must first engage with the community he comes from and put it in his work. (check out Denis Hamill's review in the New York Daily News)

BLUE CAR
Karen Moncrieff's "Blue Car" (co-starring Woodstock Film Festival advisory bard member David Strathairn) invites us into the teenage psyche of Meg (Agnes Bruckner), a gifted but emotionally scarred eighteen-year-old who finds solace in writing poetry. Her English teacher recognizes her talent and steps in as a mentor and father figure, encouraging her to enter a national poetry contest. As tension at home escalates and Meg struggles to find a way to get to the poetry finals, her teacher's role in her life becomes increasingly complex. The film pushes emotional buttons and questions our attitudes about forbidden love. Visit the official website

ON THE PLASMA SCREEN

Troy Garrity also appears in Soldier's Girl, directed by Frank Pierson ("Citizen Cohn") and co-produced and written by WFF advisory board member Ron Nyswaner.

This is the true story of a young soldier who fell in love with a trans-gendered nightclub singer forms the basis for this original drama starring Troy Garity ("Bandits") as 21-year-old Army private Barry Winchell. When he falls for Calpernia Adams (Lee Pace), an alluring trans-gendered entertainer, Barry ignites the jealous fury of his homophobic brothers-in-arms, particularly his roommate Justin (Sean Hatosy), an anti-social misfit whose rage spurs violent action. Andre Braugher costars.

The film airs May 31at 9 pm on Showtime



Parker Posey in A Mighty Wind
 
MOVIE REVIEWS WITH SYD M
(Syd M is a journalist who writes weekly movie reviews for Woodstock Times)


Treacly troubadours and faux folk
A Mighty (silly) Wind

In an irony-saturated world, the sincerity of folk music is, I suppose, part of its appeal. It also makes it ripe for parody and satire in a way that only sincere things taken very seriously are. A Mighty Wind, the latest mockumentary from the hooligans responsible for This Is Spinal Tap, Waiting for Guffman and Best In Show, is both a fond tribute to the folkies who flourished in the sixties, and an hilarious satire that targets treacly folk-pop, and the kind of songs that celebrate eatin' at greasy spoons and wanderin' the land, as sung by middle-class white bread folks who do neither. (click here for the full review)

** While at last years Woodstock Film Festival, Parker Posey (left) got tips from local folkies like Happy Traum for her role in "A Mighty Wind."


VIDEO STORE RELEASES

ADAPTATION
Reviewed by Clint Morris for Film Threat

As ingenious as it was, who else thought "Being John Malkovich" ­ conceived by screenwriter Charlie Kaufman and Director Spike Jonze ­ was just a little too wacky for it's own good? Good. Glad we're on the same page ­ now you might appreciate more the charge of reviewing the collaborators equally off the wall follow-up "Adaptation", infinitely impractical, consistently unique and vastly imaginative. (read the full review)

THE GREY ZONE
Writer-director-actor Tim Blake Nelson's relentlessly bleak drama that uses one of history’s most incomprehensible calamities to address the ultimate question of human survival is now available on DVD and video. The film features deeply impassioned performances by David Arquette, Daniel Benzali, David Chandler, Steve Buscemi, Harvey Keitel, Mira Sorvino, and Natasha Lyonne

 


stella chasteen vase NOT SO SILENT AUCTION
As part of its "not so silent auction," the Woodstock Film Festival is unveiling some exquisite items including a limited edition Phish Print signed by all band members, an artists proof of the "Robert Fripp limited edition print" by bass superman Tony Levin. Other items to date include "Cow in Far West Desert" by RT Livingston, a Stella Zahn quilt and a Stella Chasteen vase (pictured left). Support the Woodstock Film Festival and the these artists by
visiting http://www.woodstockfilmfestival.com/auction.htm

NEW SPONSOR

The WFF is thrilled to have Ameribag back on board as a 2003 sponsor.
Developed by AmeriBag® founders Irwin and Margery Gaffin, the Healthy Back Bag® evolved following a back injury Margery suffered a few years prior.

The patented ergonomic design of the Healthy Back Bag® makes the weight feel up to one third lighter by redistributing the bag's center of gravity, while relieving stress on the neck, shoulders and back.

Created for men and women, the Healthy Back Bag® is versatile, attractive, and can be used as a carry-on, urban tote, baby bag, gym bag or everyday bag..... for how you live your life. For more info, visit Ameribag

OVERSEEING UNDERSIGHT OF THE MASS MEDIA
New FCC proposals would further limit choices, voices

By Jim Gordon (courtesy of the Woodstock Times)

In 1975, there were 952 television stations in the United States, owned by 543 entities. By the year 2000, after a sweeping deregulation in 1996 that was supposed to promote competition, the number of TV stations had risen to 1,678, but the number of owners had shrunk to 360.

Now, in another of a series of issues that seem to go relatively unnoticed in wartime — including the proposed diminishment of veterans benefits and the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision that upheld state laws against late-term abortions — the Federal Communications Commission, under chairman Michael Powell, son of Secretary of State Colin Powell, is considering easing rules that restrict media companies from owning overlapping outlets in markets across the country. If implemented, the new ballgame would mean that a company could own both a newspaper and television station in the same city (as Rupert Murdoch already does, by special waiver, own both the New York Post and Fox-5 television in the city); end the rule that prevents one television network from merging with another; remove the cap that limits the number of radio stations a single owner may control in a radio market (the official limit now stands at eight), and end regulations that prevent one company from owning broadcast outlets that reach more than 35 percent of the population.(read the full article)

Tell the Federal Communications Commissioners not to approve this plan allowing further mergers by media conglomerates by visiting True Majority


ADVERTISING OPPORTUNITIES

To advertise with the Woodstock Film Festival, click here.


The Woodstock Film Festival is a not-for-profit, (501) C-3 organization with a mission to present  an annual program and year- round schedule of film-related activities  combining inspired learning and the promotion of sustainable economic development by attracting film, video and media production to the Hudson Valley /Catskills region.

  

This event is made possible with public funds from the
New York State Council on the Arts, a State Agency
Visit the Hudson Valley/Catskills
 
2003 Sponsors (as of 4/28/03):
Markertek.com - Organic Style - Amtrak - Catskill Mtn Region Guide - Ruder Finn -
Planet Noise - MGM/UA - The Conza Foundation - The Perry & Martin Granoff Family Foundation - Ameribag

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