film-month

April is Local Film Month!

[Dan Cross] 
Local film events are rare in the Metro East, but this April will feature no fewer than FOUR different screenings of work by filmmakers with ties to the Belleville area.

Ted 05 Belleville

April 4: SWIC Faculty Film Screening

film-monthFor the first time ever, Southwestern Illinois College will present an evening of works by faculty in its film department. Included in the show will be “Go South for Animal Index”, an experimental silent film (set to 35 musical tracks ranging from dreamy acoustic songs to upbeat rock and roll) about the history of uranium mining and the atomic bomb. The film is based on a poem by St. Louis writer Stefene Russell. The poem was set to music by the St. Louis arts collective Poetry Scores, and the musical CD was then adapted for the screen by producer and director Chris King. The movie was shot over a two-year period in locations around St. Louis including the Atomic Cowboy nightclub, Crystal City Underground, and rural settings in St. Charles and Cuba, MO. SWIC film instructor Dan Cross originally signed on to the project as an extra (a zombie miner, to be precise). He ended up as co-director of photography and edited the entire film. Also screening will be “Made in China,” a new dramatic short film by SWIC film instructor Stacy Singh. Directors King and Singh and editor/co-Director of Photography Cross will be on hand to discuss the films and take questions from the audience. The event is free and open to the public, though the films may not be appropriate for younger viewers.

When: April 4, 7:00 pm
Where: The Liberal Arts Theater (LAC 1370) at Southwestern Illinois College, 2500 Carlyle Avenue, Belleville IL, 62220.

April 9: SWIC Student Film Screening

SanityNew films and videos by students in the film program at Southwestern will be presented. Works will include “Sanity,” by Brandon McNutt, a film about a man with multiple personalities seeking psychiatric help. McNutt not only wrote and directed, but he plays all five characters as well. “I’m really excited to have the chance to screen my movie for people other than my friends and family,” McNutt said. Also screening will be “Players” by Ron Lucas, an urban drama about a man getting duped into helping a friend collect a bad debt. The show will also include works by students in SWIC’s Visual Effects class, featuring many interesting low-budget DIY special effects. The event is free and open to the public, though some films may not be appropriate for younger viewers.

When: April 9, 7:00 pm
Where: The Liberal Arts Theater (LAC 1370) at Southwestern Illinois College, 2500 Carlyle Avenue, Belleville IL, 62220.

April 22-27: The Premiere of “Belleville: The Movie”

Trent and Steadman

Trent and Steadman

The biggest film news of the Metro East this year (or maybe ever) is the feature film “Belleville”, produced by and starring Belleville native Ted Trent. The movie tells the story of Willie, a widowed and withdrawn farmer who is pulled out of his depression by an unusual kind-hearted visitor, Neila. The film was shot over a three-week period in Belleville, Freeburg, and New Athens last October, and dozens of people from the Metro East played roles in the film and on the crew. With everyone dying to see the finished product, Trent and director Dan Steadman have planned a glitzy premiere worthy of Hollywood, complete with a red carpet, press corps, and limousines. The premiere will be Tuesday, April 22 at 7:30 p.m. at the historic Lincoln Theater in downtown Belleville. Tickets for the premiere are already sold out, but tickets remain for many other scheduled screenings of the film at the Lincoln from April 22-27. Every screening will be hosted by one or more members of the cast and crew who will introduce the movie and share interesting behind-the-scenes facts and stories.

Trent and Steadman are also hosting several free workshops April 23 and 24 in conjunction with the film’s debut. Topics will include how to break into reality TV, how to raise a creative child (hosted by Steadman’s mother, Diane Ewald), and how to find work on film productions. More information about the workshops and the screenings can be found at their official website, BellevilleTheMovie.com.

Before the curtain on the “Belleville” premiere has barely come down, Trent and Steadman will begin shooting another new feature film, “Expect Delays”, in and around Belleville. These folks have really energized the people of the Metro East and made everyone excited about making movies here. Please come out and support their great work!

When: April 22 through April 27, various times
Where: The Lincoln Theater, 103 East Main Street, Belleville, IL, 62220.

April 24: Joint SWIC/Webster Student Screening

Film faculty at Southwestern Illinois College and Webster University have recently worked together to create an exciting transfer agreement to make it easier for film students to earn a B.A. in film with two years of study at SWIC and two years at Webster. To help celebrate this agreement, faculty have organized a joint screening to showcase some the best student films to come out of each schools. The event will feature two hours of films (half from SWIC, half from Webster) showing a wide range of student projects including narrative films, short documentaries, and music videos. The same program will also screen at Webster’s Winifred Moore Auditorium on Sunday, April 27. The screening at SWIC is free and open to the public, though some films may not be appropriate for younger viewers. The same program will also screen at Webster’s Winifred Moore Auditorium on Sunday, April 27 at 7:30pm.

When: April 24, 7:00 pm
Where: The Liberal Arts Theater (LAC 1370) at Southwestern Illinois College, 2500 Carlyle Avenue, Belleville IL, 62220.

Str8Up staff writer Dan Cross teaches film and directs the film program at Southwestern Illinois College in Belleville.  He was “imbedded” with the film crew of Belleville during their work in the Metro East and served as set photographer. He also works on other local films, including the recent feature “Go South for Animal” Index, on which he served as editor, assistant director, and co-director of photography. Cross also plays in two local bands, Earthsol and the Vinyl Frontier. 

“Belleville – the Movie” additional events / showtimes and conversations with the cast & crew at the Lincoln Theater:


View Larger Map

Wednesday, April 23
12:15 p.m. Hosted by Rick Jey, Alie Morgan, Vincent Gaither, and acting coach Ted Jordan, who worked with Forrest Whitaker on “Hurricane.” (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)
 2:25 p.m. Bob Snyder shares how he got the role in “Belleville” and what it’s like to be the first face to appear on screen! (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)
 4:40 p.m. Antonio St. James tells how he went from auditioning and being featured in a BND article to booking a role on NBC’s “Chicago P.D.” (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)
 7:15 p.m. Actor Ron Klein and camera operator David Lubbers will talk about life on the set of “Belleville.” (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)
 
Thursday, April 24
12:15 p.m. Actors Susan Blakey and Wayne Ault will talk about following your dreams at any age. (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)
 2:25 p.m. Bill Conklin and Ron Klein will talk about playing bowlers and best friends in “Belleville.” (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)
 4:40 p.m. Eric Dean White and Keith Nussbaum will talk about their sizable on screen roles. (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)
 7:15 p.m. Cathleen Lindauer, will share City tip of movie logistics. (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)
 
Friday, April 25
12:15 p.m. Actors Rose Marie Fitzgerald and Ann Jacobs talk about shooting on location. (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)
 2:25 p.m. Susie Werle Larkin shares the specifics of being an on-set production assistant & Aerial Hawkey will talk about the audition process. (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)
 4:40 p.m. Bob Snyder shares how he got the role in “Belleville” and what its like to be the first face to appear on screen! (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)
 7:15 p.m. Hosted by lead actress Kate Barton (Jana in “Belleville”) and radio hosts of “The John & Kane Show” (IndioRadio.com) (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)
 9:30 p.m. Script supervisor and actor Logan Short talks about balancing two roles on a film set – behind the scenes and in front of the camera. (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)
 
Saturday, April 26
12:15 p.m. Hosted by voiceover artist, print model, actress, and mom Jessica Ambuehl. (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)
 2:25 p.m. Hosted by actress Jennifer Blomstrom, who plays the pivotal role of the Gary’s Restaurant waitress in “Belleville.” (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)
 4:40 p.m. Production assistants Keith Nussbaum and Mike Cowan talk about pulling off the tricky water fountain scene in the movie. (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)
 7:15 p.m. Hosted by lead actress and St. Louis acting coach Cooper Shaw, who plays the villainous Arlene! (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)
 9:30 p.m. Cooper Shaw and Eric Dean White tell stories from the set of “Belleville.” (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)

Sunday, April 27
12:30 p.m. Hosted by actors Shawn Chevalier (Jana’s friend) and Margery Handy, the woman who intervenes at Belleville’s the water fountain. (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)
 2:45 p.m. Hosted by Andra Harkins, who plays the very funny bookstore owner in “Belleville.” (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)
 5:00 p.m. Hosted by Bill Finkbiner, who plays the police officer who confronts Willie on his farm. (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)
 7:15 p.m. Wardrobe and Prop Specialist Rachel Farrell will share her experiences pulling off “Belleville” on a budget. (FREE WITH TICKET PURCHASE TO FILM)