Austin Cinematic Limits

Austin will be representin’ at the Annual News and Documentary Emmy Awards. As if winning the Truer Than Fiction Award at the 2012 Independent Spirit Awards weren’t enough, Austin filmmaker Heather Courtney’s Where Soldiers Come From (which was broadcast on PBS’s POV series) just received an Emmy nomination in the “Outstanding Continuing Coverage of a News Story – Long Form” category. The awards ceremony will take place Monday, October 1 at the Lincoln Center in New York City. If you have not seen Where Soldiers Come From, it will be rebroadcast in September. And, don’t worry, I will remind you again.

Former Austinite Kyle Henry‘s Fourplay (which boasts an Austin-centric cast and crew including producer Jason Wehling, cinematographer PJ Raval and actor Paul Soileau) premiered at San Franciso’s Frameline36 in June and it just screened last night in Los Angeles at Outfest 2012. I can only assume that Fourplay will be screening at many more LGBT festivals in the coming year and the Austin premiere will probably take place at aGLIFF 2012 (October 3-7, 2012) but that’s merely an assumption.

Austin filmmaker and graphic designer, Yen Tan (Ciao) wrapped principal photography on his newest feature Pit Stop last week. Pit Stop tells the parallel stories of two gay men living in a small Texas town. These two men are “country queers” who have opted to live someplace where their lifestyle is not tolerated. Being gay is part of their identity, but they are not “out”; instead, they find ways to blend in with the rest of their community. It is worth noting that during pre-production, Pit Stop raised an astounding $32,046 (its goal was $22,000) via USA Projects.

Production on Pit Stop wrapped just in time for producer Kelly Williams to jump over to Kat Candler’s newest short film Black Metal, which just started production on Friday. Black Metal follows Ian, the lead singer of a black metal band whose music is linked to the murder of math teacher by a teenager. In his mid 30s, Ian struggles with the guilt and blame of a tragic and senseless murder. He is forced to re-evaluate the two things he loves most, his music and his family. Black Metal evaluates how what artists put out into the world comes back through audience interpretation and reaction. Black Metal stars Jonny Mars (in corpse paint!) and Heather Kafka and features Austin’s very own black metal band, Vesperian Sorrow. During pre-production, Black Metal raised an impressive $7,131 (its goal was $6,000) via indiegogo.

In other news… Tugg seemed to be popping up a lot in my Twitter and Facebook feeds this week. Cherry Bomb enjoyed a sold out Tugg screening (presented by The Show! Austin) on Tuesday night at Alamo Slaughter Lane. The July 16 screening of Die Hard (presented by Die Hard for the National Film Registry) at Alamo Drafthouse South Lamar met its quota by the Tugg deadline; so did the July 17 screening of the Fantastic Fest 2011 fave Headhunters (presented by Fons PR and Bearded Pony) at Alamo Drafthouse South Lamar.

You probably remember that yours truly went canoeing with Frank Hvam and Casper Christensen a couple of weeks ago, then we watched Klown on a Rolling Roadshow screen alongside the Guadalupe river. (Okay, you might have but I certainly will never forget that day.) Well, Alamo Drafthouse Founder and C.E.O. Tim League had promised us during that event that he would do his best to get the U.S. distribution rights to the entire Klown television series. In the meantime, the Alamo South Lamar will present the Best of Klown the Series on July 18, featuring four episodes that were handpicked by Frank and Casper and will include recorded introductions by them. (More info)

And, finally, one of my favorite films of 2012 (so far) — Amy Seimetz’s Sun Don’t Shine — is screening at Cinema East on Sunday, July 22 with Seimitz in attendance for the Q&A and afterparty (at Cheer Up Charlies). Two young star crossed lovers, Crystal (Kate Lyn Sheil) and Leo (Kentucker Audley), drive across Florida during a brutally hot and humid summer in a car with no air conditioning. They are obviously running away from something as they desperately try to stay clear of anyone’s radar. Sun Don’t Shine is not technically a horror film, but it maintains the spine-tingling intensity of a horrible nightmare. The film plays like a 1970s road movie, utilizing an experimental artfulness that is reminiscent of Two-Lane Blacktop, Badlands and Bonnie and Clyde. Similar to those films, Sun Don’t Shine is not necessarily a traditional narrative; the road movie elements are not used to propel the narrative forward, but to trap Crystal and Leo in a smothering and smoldering incapacious space. In my humble opinion, Kate Lyn Sheil (Green, Silver Bullets) and Kentucker Audley (Bad Fever) gave some of the best performances of 2011. With Sun Don’t Shine, Sheil and Audley up the ante by giving career-defining performances. If you live anywhere near Austin, Sun Don’t Shine is a must see! (More info)

Austin Movie Events This Week:

7/16 – Alamo Ritz – Alfred Hitchcock’s Lifeboat screens as part of a miniseries of The Alamo Ritz’s favorite Hitchcock titles. (More Info)

7/16 – Alamo Village – Austin Film Festival presents the Audience Award Film Series screening of Restive. (More info)

7/17 – Alamo South Lamar – AFS’s Essential Cinema Series features Mutum. (More info)

7/17 – Alamo Slaughter Lane – Alamo’s Food & Film series presents Lagunitas Beer Dinner: Boogie Nights. (More info)

7/18 – Alamo South Lamar – AFS’ Doc Nights presents Anne Braden: Southern Patriot. (More info)

7/18-7/19 – Stateside at the Paramount – Go down a dark alley with this Film Noir double-feature: Scarlet Street and Kiss Me Deadly. (More info)

7/19 – Paramount Theatre – Did you know that Iron & Wine’s Sam Beam is a former film studies professor? Well, now you do. Beam will be introducing this screening of The Third Man. (More info)

7/19 – Salvage Vanguard Theater – Cinema 41 Presents In the Soup. (More info)

7/20 – Spider House’s 29th Street Ballroom – I Luv Video’s 30th Anniversary Costume Party extravaganza! (More info)

7/21 – Day’s Inn in Hillsboro, TX (Rolling Roadshow) – This is the 2nd Annual Save The Bottle Rocket Motel event (which includes a screening of Bottle Rocket) to ensure that the motel will be there for years to come. (More info)


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