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Scienstars is a TV series aimed at teaching science through science fiction in the classroom or a home school environment.  Produced in the Salisbury with talent from the Carolinas and the southeast it is a worthwhile project to get behind.  

Here's your chance.  Check out the video below and then the link below to find out more about this exciting new tool to entertain and teach.



Jason Vail.jpgI first noticed Jason Vail in in the film The Cabin by Tommy Faircloth where Jason played a polite but eventually creepy suitor to Morgan Monnig's character Laura.  Next, I noticed he had a small part in Million Dollar Arm, a Disney movie with Jon Hamm,  as a sports agent.  Then I found out that he once lived in Lancaster, South Carolina as a teenager and that is where his passion for acting began and later blossomed in college.

Having spent many of my teenage weekends in Lancaster (I had a lot of friends that lived there), I wanted to find out more about this actor so I contacted him.  Turns out he is a very nice and obliging fellow currently living in Georgia but willing to go wherever the work takes him.   For instance, during the period we talked he was cast for Valley of the Sasquatch which is a production being filmed in Seattle, Washington.  

He is staying busy too, having just recently finished his role in Dorchester's Revenge: The Return of Crinoline Head that premieres tonight in Charleston, South Carolina. He already has seven other appearances lined up that are in some stage of production and dozens of credits behind him.  In the early days he worked out of New York where he had roles in some of the soap operas filmed there such as Guiding Light, One Life to Live, and As The World Turns.  

Another movie that he had a hand in was Abraham Lincoln vs. Zombies, a fictional retelling of the Lincoln story which was released a couple of years ago and gained a certain level of notoriety.  In it he plays the character of John Wilkes who we later find out is John Wilkes Booth, Lincoln's assassin. That and the movie Gut, which he starred in,  gave a significant boost to his career. 

Read our discussion below and if you get a chance check out the Red Carpet Premiere of Dorchesters Revenge in Charleston tonight.  You might catch him there.


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There will be a red carpet premiere screening of Dorchester's Revenge: The Return of Crinoline Head in Charleston,, South Carolina.


Tommy Faircloth.jpgCrinoline Head is a1995 film by Tommy Faircloth about what happens at a remote cabin where a group of college students have gone for a weekend of fun.  That is until they learn about what had previously happened in that cabin involving a young boy and his dollmaking mother.

That film has been very popular and it was just recently that Tommy came up with an idea to expand on the theme.  The result is Dorchester's Revenge: The Return of Crinoline Head.

I first encountered one of Tommy's films, The Cabin, earlier this year. It was filmed in the Carolinas and Tennessee on a very tight schedule and budget starring Morgan Monnig and Jason Vail along with Robert Zobel as producer and Shelby Washburn as production assistant.  I was very impressed with what they were able to do in such a short time frame in addition to the travel time between locations that was required and the quality of the work they produced.

Tommy describes Dorchester's Revenge as not a sequel to the original Crinoline Head but more of a prequel.  A premiere in Charleston, South Carolina is planned for next weekend followed by some outtakes from the movie, questions and answers, then an opportunity for autographs and photos with the cast.  Next, a night on the town with celebrations at The Rooftop at Vendue Inn for drinks, and later still at Pantheon to see local drag performers Ava Clear and Vega perform.  Ava and Vega are also part of the cast of Dorchester's Revenge.

Below you can see trailers from the original Crinoline Head.  The Cabin, and the new trailer for Dorchester's Revenge along with the conversation I had with Tommy about his films and filmmaking. 

Enjoy, and if you can make it to Charleston next weekend treat yourself to an exciting night of fun and film.



Monstercon 2014 opens it's doors this Friday in Greenville, South Carolina for three days of celebrities, film screenings, cosplay, comic books, toys, and more.





Craven Street, Beaufort, South Carolina, Unite...

Craven Street, Beaufort, S.C . (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


The Beaufort Film Society is calling for entries to the 2015 Beaufort Internationan Film Festival located in Beaufort, South Carolina.  The next festival is scheduled for February 11th through 15th of 2015.


Beaufort is situated on Port Royal Island in the coastal lowcountry area of  of South Carolina.  The Big Chill, The Great Santini, and Forest Gump were filmed there.  Also known for it's historic houses and shrimp festival.


Early Bird Deadline is July 31; Final Deadline is Oct 31.


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Enjoy a night out with a great tongue in cheek comedy featuring a collection of stars from the Carolinas.

The Strange and Unusual was filmed primarily in Chester, South Carolina by filmmakers local to Rock Hill and Carolina actors.  This is a great opportunity to view the work of our neighbors and observe the talent we have right here at home.  There will also be a Q&A session with the filmmakers following the presentation.

The Underexposed Film Series is presented by The Arts Council of York County.


For Tickets:
The Strange and Unusual
Friday, June 13th - 7:30 pm
Community Performance Center
249 East Main Street
Rock Hill, South Carolina
803-328-2787

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Morgan Monnig is an actor from the lowcountry of South Carolina who I recently saw in the short film The Cabin written and directed by Tommy Faircloth along with Robert Zobel as producer.  She does an excellent job in it as does her on screen suitor played by Jason Vail.  Filmed in Columbia, South Carolina and Gatlinburg, Tennessee it has some beautiful mountain scenery mixed in with a chilling ending.  It has won best short film at over a half dozen film festivals, nominated at a half dozen others, and selected to be screened at over twenty more to date.

She is currently filming Worldly Possessions, as Detective Michelle Ryan. The screenplay for this film was written by Brad Hord and is being directed by Robert Filion.  In this tale, Stephen Drake (Tim Ross), is trying to keep demons from entering our world but he's facing a few demons of his own.  Currently filming in Shelby and other areas of the Carolinas.

Morgan likes nothing better than being on set working.  You can also find Morgan behind the scenes when she gets a chance, writing and directing her own films.  Though she has no formal training as an actor or director she knows how to find the help she needs to get the job done. She has a very resourceful attitude.  Athletic and competitive, with a take charge spirit that works in her favor to gain the respect of everyone she works with.

Enjoy the conversation below that I had with Morgan and keep your eyes peeled for other projects she has coming up.

The Mineola Twins

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MineolaTwins.jpgCongratulations to the cast and crew of The Mineola Twins playing now through Sunday at Winthrop University as a part of Rock Hill's Come See Me Week.

It is a story of two young women, identical twins, who long to leave Mineola for bigger things.  Riley Ketchum shines playing the parts of both Myrna and Myra. Bridgette Smith has a strong and comical performance as Jim in the first acts and Sarah in the latter part of the play. Not to be outdone, Rodrick Freitas is outstanding as Kenny and Ben.  

The play starts out with Jenn Fant as The Voice who hauntingly narrates the dream sequences that appear throughout the play. Her and the ensemble: Sydney Bertsch, Jesse Pritchard, Nora Webb, and LaShawn Woolridge illustrate what's happening in the dream sequences as well as appearing as individual characters later in the play.

This is  a comedy with a serious subtext to it covering the periods from the Eisenhower era to the Nixon and Bush Sr. administrations.  Myra and Myrna are as different as night and day and are never in agreement as siblings sometimes are.  No one is perfect though as you will learn.  

There were many sets used throughout the play that were well designed with a modern look while being  simple and effective at projecting the style of the play and being the perfect backdrop for the performers.  The sound design and lighting emphasized what was happening onstage very well and the acoustics and sound in the auditorium was spectacular.  This helped create the magic of The Mineola Twins.


I Married an Alien - Premiere

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I Married an Alien.jpgApril 25th is the date for the premiere of I Married an Alien, a science fiction comedy produced and directed by Collins White of Other Vision Studios with Micah Thompson as head writer.

The cast includes Cassie Thompson, Micah Thompson, David Bean, Lindsay Morgan, Jamil Jaar, Audrey Dickson, and Nathan Forest




Young Artist Award

Young Artist Award (Photo credit: Crakker Jakk)

What does it take to succeed?  These two young ladies know.

The Young Artist Awards began 34 years ago as a children's version of what the Academy Awards presentation is like.  Just like with the Academy Awards it is an honor to be nominated.  Brandi Alyssa Young and Taylor-Grace Davis have both been nominated this year.  Both are very familiar faces in the films from southeast and are beginning to broaden their horizons as their high school careers come to an end.


Brandi has been nominated three times including this year.  This time she is nominated for her work in the web series The Dark One as Michelle Smith. She will not be attending the ceremonies this year as she has just moved from South Carolina to Pennsylvania and is getting settled in there while exploring and learning her way around New York City.

This is a first nomination for Taylor-Grace for her role as Rebekkah Madison in The Box. who's senior prom is the night before the awards.  She is a member of the prom committee and doesn't want to miss that.  She doesn't want to miss the awards either.  So she will be attending the prom then flying to Los Angeles afterwards in order to get to the Empire Ballroom in Studio City, California where the award ceremonies are held.

Mosaic 33 now on Roku

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M33.jpgMosaic 33 a sci-fi thriller written by Brad Hord and directed by Robert W. Fillion and is now available to watch on your Roku box at the GetScaredTV Channel.

Currently very popular on the festival circuit, Mosaic 33 stars Jennifer Russoli, Brett Gentile, and Vanessa Ore.

The Roku box enables you to watch Netflix, Hulu, and many other channels and shows when you want to.  No more appointment TV.  So if you don't have a Roku get one.  You won't look back.






   
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Here's what you like to hear.  A short being made into a feature.  The Find, written by Mike Garland and produced by Ridge Runner Media is about to become a feature length motion picture.  Filmed last year in the Spartanburg, S.C. area, it is a story about a man who finds a relic sword and how it changes the lives of him and his wife.

After getting a distribution deal from My Production Limited  in England for the short, a decision waas made to do a feature length version of The Find.  Mike said he and the producers, Mike and Terry Miller  are starting work on the new parts of the screenplay as soon a possible and be will recalling most of the original cast.  Filming is being scheduled for mid summer.

The association with My Production Limited will help the film be seen in the UK on Hulu, Netflix, and Redbox.

Reminds me of the way Bottle Rocket and My Name Is Paul started out as shorts and were later made into features, jump starting a few careers along the way.



Chris Gervais of Strawhouse Pictures on Filmmaking

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A filmmaker is someone who will do whatever it takes to get the project completed. Chris Gervais is just that sort of person.

Though his dream is to be in that famed director's chair full time, he's so in love with filmmaking (and the digital revolution) that he's taken on composing, acting, lighting, sound, editing... pretty much you name it, he's done it. 

In this interview, we get a great insight into someone basically self-educated in this through  real world experience.  The advice Chris gives us here is taken from the sets and locations he's been a part of  and from the trial and error he's been through.  Delve in and enjoy!



 
Writing

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If you are a writer or filmmaker who would like to learn more about writing and share some comaraderie with like minded folks this is the class for you. Beginning February 5th and continuing every Wednesday at Jade Castle Studios in Greenville, South Carolina.

The instructor will be John Norwood who graduated from  the University of Southern California with a Master of Fine Arts in Cinema-Television.  

Starting Wednesday Feburary 5th at Jade Castle Studios.
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm

More information at:

Rest Stop by IHF Films

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Stephen King, American author best known for h...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

IHF Films is a comprised of Gary Michael Hill, Blair Hoyle, and Patrick Abernathy.  They are getting ready to produce Rest Stop by Stephen King through Stephen's Dollar Babies program for film students.

Check out their campaign to raise funding at:


   
Map of South Carolina highlighting Greenville ...

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Acting classes for adullts and kids/teens being February 5th at Jade Castle Studios in Greenville, South Carolina.  The classes are limited to 10 students and you must register by January 31st.

Taught by veteran actor  Ron Joseph.

Wednesday Feburary 5th thru April 23rd at Jade Castle Studios.
6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

More information at:
English: 16 mm film reel Svenska: 16 mm filmhjul

Photo credit: Holder Ellgaard via Wikipedia

Daryn Zonegrone is working to bring The Film House to Greenville, South Carolina where it will show independent films and classic movies.  The project will be funded through the South Carolina Small Business Chamber of Commerce's new web site SCcrowdfund.com.

   
English: A typical southern breakfast served a...

(Photo credit: sashafatcat via Wikipedia)

The late deadline to submit your film for the Indie Grits Film Festival has past by there is still one last chance to submit by using Withoutabox. The Withoutabox extended deadline is January 17th.  So if you want to enter this film festival about southeast films and filmmakers  here is the link to the submission page.

"What do you want to do with your life?" Ginny asks in this film directed by Karen Stanton for ShadowCatcher  Entertainment in association with the Brain Injury Association of Washington.


A Not So Still Life is a documentary I ran across this week as I was looking up other things.  A feature length film about artist Ginny Ruffner.   She was known as Ginny Martin back in the days when she was growing up in Atlanta, GA and Fort Mill, SC before leaving home and getting married.

After attending the University of Georgia she ended up in Seattle, Washington and became a ground breaking ceramic artist known worldwide for her ceramic sculptures.
Ginny Ruffner ( Photo credit: VOA - J. Taboh via wikipedia)