Wednesday, November 9, 2011

New Program from MFS: Movie Nite!

The Memphis Film Society is proud to roll out our newest ongoing program: Movie Nite!  So what is Movie Nite!?  We're glad you asked!

Each month we will feature a locally produced feature film in an atmosphere where you, the movie-goer, can watch the movie, socialize with others in the Memphis film scene, and enjoy food and drinks with your entertainment!  And since the movies will always be locally produced films, you will also get the chance to enjoy a Q&A with local filmmakers to ask about the production, get advice for your own film project, and even (at times) purchase the actual movie.  All of this is done in a casual environment that supports watching the film, as well as provides an area for those who are more interested in socializing with others in the film scene--and, best of all, the event is completely FREE!

For filmmakers with a finished project, Movie Nite! means even more.  It means having a venue to screen your finished movie for a local audience (not to mention your cast and crew), as well as an opportunity to use the occasion as a 'test screening' to gather useful information about your film prior to the final edit.  Doing this will prevent jeopardizing the precious 'premier status' of the movie, as well as give you the opportunity to tweak some changes in the edit prior to sending your movie out to film festivals.  Anyone interested in featuring their film for a screening can contact us at

Our first ever Movie Nite! is happening this month and will feature the locally produced movie At Stake: Vampire Solutions.  Producer/director Jim Weter will be on hand for the screening, along with other key production personnel, and he will also be talking about the upcoming sequel to the movie (which will be casting very soon), as well as the ongoing Cellardoor Cinema screenplay competition that will be kicking off in the near future.  This event is sponsored by Sky Grille, a new locally owned venue that offers two floors of fun, great music, and even better food and drink.  You can RSVP for this free event and get more information on our Facebook page for this event.

So come on out to support this Memphis-made movie (who doesn't like vampire flicks?), to gain valuable insights into shooting a movie in Memphis, as well as to enjoy wonderful food and drinks at the awesome Sky Grille.  See you all there!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Indie Memphis Film Festival - Preview

So tomorrow kicks off the 14th round of the Indie Memphis Film Festival and (as always) we are excited!  This year's event will feature an array of new and celebrated feature films (some of them locally produced), informative panels, and a series of shorts programs that will appeal to everyone. 

After perusing the schedule for the festival, I thought it would be worth the time to note the daily highlights that we will be tuning into--and hopefully illustrate to all of you why you, too, need to hit this year's event!

Thursday, November 3:

7:00 pm, These Amazing Shadows.  This documentary takes a closer look at what makes the cut for film at the Library of Congress.  It's a fascinating subject that's highlighted with interviews with people like John Waters and John Singleton.

9:15 pm, Taxi Driver.  If you've never seen this Robert DeNiro classic on the big screen, you haven't seen it.  Thanks to Indie Memphis this is your chance!

Friday, November 4:

11:00 am, The Interrupters.  This documentary focuses on ex-gang members in Chicago who actively stop crimes from happening--at the moment they are about to happen!  Interesting and edgy, this is a great flick to catch at the Brooks Museum of Art.

7:00 pm, This is What Love in Action Looks Like.  This locally produced documentary has already been tearing up the festival circuit.  Catch this movie with the filmmaker in attendance.

9:30 pm, Short Films #2:  Hometowner.  Support local filmmakers' efforts by seeing their short films on the big screen.  Hey, it could be your movie next year! 

Saturday, November 5:

11:30 am, Eleanor's Secret.  This French animated feature is already a festival favorite and has even garnered Oscar attention. 

12:45 pm, Screenwriting Panel.  Learn the art of screenwriting and get advice from local luminary Craig Brewer and acclaimed screenwriter Daniel Waters (Heathers, Batman Returns).

4:45 pm, Jeff, Who Lives at Home.  Catch the newest film from Mumblecore pioneers the Duplass Brothers (The Puffy Chair, Baghead, Cyrus).  It's sure to be a highlight of the day.

7:00 pm, Losers Take All.  Another locally produced movie--this one is a comedy that surrounds the fictitious band The Fingers.  Filmmakers will be in attendance.

10:00 pm, Better Than Something:  Jay Reatard.  This documentary follows the life of the local rock legend and is sure to make you want to hit the Hi Tone this weekend.

Sunday, November 6:

12:00 pm, Melancholia.  The latest from auteur Lars von Trier, this film is sure to keep you guessing and writhing in your seat since it features a frayed family waiting for the end of the world!  This looks to be an early favorite for best film in the festival.

3:00 pm, Documentary Filmmaking.  This conversation features Bruce Sinofsky (the documentarian who has been following the Memphis Three) and Robert Gordon.  Listen in and learn the ins-and-outs of this form of filmmaking.

Of course, there are also numerous other screenings, conversations, and even parties to take part in as well during the festival.  So visit the Indie Memphis website and snag your festival pass now (while you can) and we'll see you at the theatre!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Redemption Road - Free Advance Screening

Join the Memphis Film Society with supporting the new film Redemption Road at its advance screening this Tuesday, August 23rd (7:30pm) at the Malco Cordova Cinema (1080 North Germantown Parkway).  The film is directed by Mario Van Peebles and was produced by Freestyle Releasing.  Here is the official synopsis of the movie:

Two seemingly different men (Academy Award Nominee Michael Clarke Duncan, Morgan Simpson) embark on a music-steeped journey through the American South, learning along the way that life isn’t about where you end up – it’s how you get there that matters.

What could be better than watching a great, new movie?  How about watching it for free?  Simply visit this link and get two free passes for the movie delivered straight to your email inbox.  You will have to sign up for a Gofobo account--but it's quick, easy, and free.  I hope you will support new and innovative independent features that screen in Memphis by catching this advance screening.  You won't be disappointed!  More information about the movie can be seen at its official website.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Filmmaker Expo Schduled--A Must Attend Event

In lieu of a regular mixer in August (let's face it, it's pretty dang hot to be standing around outside in a beer garden right now), the Memphis Film Society is encouraging everyone to attend the Fuel Film Filmmakers Media Expo.  It will be a great opportunity for local actors and crew to check out production companies who work in the Memphis area--and a great way for directors and producers to round up some headshots and meet crew for their next project.  Here is the official description of the event from Fuel Film:

Cast your actors – Cast your crew. Calling all filmmakers, screenwriters, technical crew, actors, producers, directors, PA’s — this is your event! FuelFilm Memphis presents the Mid-South’s largest Filmmaking and Media Trade Show. Join us in the newly renovated/expanded Sky Grille, easily accessible in MidTown Memphis, and share an afternoon with like-minded professionals. (This event combines June’s rescheduled “Cast Your Crew” and August’s “Break Some Legs”.)

Directors: need a film crew? The Filmmakers Media Expo is the place to fill the positions you seek. Casting Directors: need actors? Private space is provided to meet your actors and cast your projects. Film Support Professionals: We’ve got ongoing discussions and networking opportunities. FuelFilm offers a day of learning and “hands on” presentations for every element of filmmaking — from script to screen. Learn from the pros, appearing live and via Skype.

Bring your headshots, resumes, business cards, comp cards — you know the drill — and prepare to interview (or be interviewed), and to connect with regional industry professionals. Who knows — your next big break might be waiting for you at the FILMMAKERS MEDIA EXPO!

Filmmakers ~ you are welcome to bring DVDs & memorabilia of your work for sale to your adoring fans and supporters! More information to be posted next week.

If you plan to attend the event as a production  company--and would like to set up a table for recruiting, gathering headshots, and/or displaying information/product--be sure to specify that when you register at Eventbrite by choosing the 'Booth Registration' option.  The cost is $10 per person you want to attend, so keep that in mind as well (each person for your production company needs to register separately).  If you are interested in casting for a project, details for submitting breakdowns/sides, etc. will be posted on the Fuel Film website shortly.

For individual actors, crew, etc. simply sign up--and show up for the fun!

Again, in addition to having on-hand beverages and offering you the chance to pass around your resume, the expo will be a great way to walk around and meet others in the film industry.  Basically, just like every mixer we have ever hosted!  Register today for the event at Eventbrite and let us know if you will be setting up a table.  Otherwise, stay tuned for more information on the Fuel Film page for the event.  See you there!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Films Announced for On Location: Memphis Festival

On Location:  Memphis has just announced the lineup for this year's film festival to be held April 7-10 at the Malco Ridgeway 4 theatre.  Festival passes (as well as individual tickets for films) will be sold on the official website (  According to the festival's press release, this year's event will include "more unique presentations, a senior film event, a Bollywood event, a Kids First screening, increased presence of music, networking events for musicians and filmmakers, and other surprises."  And, of course, there will be the screening of this year's Fuel Film 48 Hour Film Launch creations.  Without further ado, here's this year's lineup...

Feature Films:  In the Key of Eli, A Lonely Place for Dying, Four Roses, Breaking Point (featuring Tom Berenger who will be in attendance), Regressa, and The Wayshower.

Documentaries:  Better Than Something:  Jay Reatard, Blaze Foley:  Duct Tape Messiah, Everyday Sunshine:  The Story of Fishbone, Finding Kind, Love & Valor - The Intimate Civil War Letters, One Revolution, Stephen Faulkner:  J'M'en vas Reviendre, and The Last Elephants in Thailand.

There will also be short film programs, student programs, and a few special screenings and presentations that include the film Win Win (featuring Paul Giamatti) and the newest outing from University of Memphis filmmaker Steven J. Ross titled Dancing on a Volcano.  See you there!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Casting Call: Evergreen -- And New News!

Casting for the movie Evergreen will be going down in February and March.  The casting call will focus on multiple roles/characters--one that probably fits even you!  The film is produced by Jenny Kim and written/directed by Jackson K. Segar, though you will be wanting to contact the casting director, Melanie L. Addington if you are interested.  What's the movie about?  A quick story line:

Daniel must deal with the departure of his girlfriend Addy while struggling with issues with his aging father, the patriarch of the family farm, who tasks Daniel with firing an old friend and farmhand.

Roles to be cast include Jefferson Ames (caucasian male, 50-75), Daniel Ames (caucasian male, 16-26), Dalton Ames (caucasian male, 9-14), Riley Williams (African American male, 50-75), Mylan Williams (African American male, 9-14), Jason Tubbs (caucasian male, 18-32),  and Addy Thompson (caucasian female, 17-25).  If you fit one of these descriptions, send along a headshot/resume to Melanie
( by February 12.  Auditions will take place Feb. 19 & 26 in Oxford, MS and on March 5 in Sardis, MS.   Shooting will take place in Como, Mississippi and compensation includes housing and meals.

Current News

The Memphis Film Society is featured on the Live From Memphis website.  Check out the article and read about our last mixer that featured talent agent Lisa Lax.  There's also a brief Q&A with me (Rich Newman) as well as some information about what we are trying to do in the coming year (in addition to hosting monthly mixers).

Be sure to save the date:  Friday, Jan. 28.  Why?  Live From Memphis is having its 10th Anniversary party.  It starts at 7pm at the LFM Studio space (1 South Main) and will feature free food and beverages, live DJ's, and an award ceremony.  Not to mention it's another opportunity to mix it up with the Memphis independent film scene!  More information is available on their Facebook event page.

In addition to the anniversary party, Live From Memphis is also now accepting entries for their Music Video Showcase.  There will be awards for winning entries and the videos will be screened in front of a live audience.  They are accepting applications until January 31 and the screening is scheduled for the weekend of March 12.  More details, as well as the online application can be downloaded here

Cellardoor Cinema is now hosting their second screenplay contest.  Entries are accepted through Withoutabox and the winner will get his/her script produced into a movie.  Shorts and features are both being accepted--and you will want to get your submission in by March 15 (at that point the price goes up from $15 to $20).  Get more details, as well as submission guidelines at Cellardoor's website.