Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Ready for Its Closeup

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Ready for Its Closeup

Article excerpt

Byline: Matt Soergel, Times-Union staff writer

A MOMENT OF SILENTS

The Flying Ace, playing Thursday at the Ritz Theatre, was filmed in the 1920s in Arlington's Norman Studios, where white filmmaker Richard Norman made silent movies for black audiences at segregated black theaters.

At a time when many films pictured blacks as comical or menacing, he routinely cast his actors in sympathetic and heroic roles, just like the war hero (Lawrence Criner) in this film.

The film, on loan from the Library of Congress, will play at 8 p.m. Tickets are $10.

Local composer John Citrone has written a score for the silent film, which will be played live on violin and cello, guitar and fretless bass.

Four of the five buildings that made up Norman Studios were recently bought by the city thanks to the efforts of the Old Arlington, Inc. preservation group. They'll be turned into a museum.

-- Matt Soergel/staff

STARS AND SEMINARS

One of the best things about film festivals is the opportunity to mingle with film industry types. The Jacksonville Film Festival has several opportunities to do just that. Among the attendees: Todd Graff, writer-director of Camp, which is likely to be a festival favorite; Robin Cowie, producer of the out-of-nowhere hit The Blair Witch Project; Bronson Pinchot, scene-stealing co-star of Beverly Hills Cop and star of TV's Perfect Strangers, whose new film, Winning Girls Through Psychic Mind Control, plays at the festival; Atlantic Beach native Linden Ashby, the star of Mortal Kombat; and renowned documentarian Barak Goodman, winner of Emmy and Peabody awards.

Here's the schedule:

FRIDAY

4 p.m.: Legends of Tomorrow -- Alert to hopeful filmmakers: Discussions and film clips with University of Florida and Florida State University film students and professors. $5. Theatre Jacksonville.

5:30 p.m.: Starbucks Coffee Chat -- Hour-long discussion with Todd Graff, writer-director of Camp, actor Linden Ashby (Mortal Kombat, Melrose Place) and Jean Tait, programmer of the festival. Free. Jacksonville Landing store.

SATURDAY

10 a.m.: Starbucks Coffee Chat -- Hour-long discussion with actors Bronson Pinchot (Winning Girls Through Psychic Mind Control), Paul Popowich (Vampires Anonymous), Warren Skeels (Surfacing) and Trent McMullen (It All Happens Incredibly Fast). Free. San Marco store.

1 p.m.: Crash course in screenwriting -- A panel discussion with local screenwriters Chuck Pfarrer (The Jackal, Red Planet) and Sharon Y. Cobb (Lighthouse Hill). $10. Cummer Museum.

3 p.m.: Industry Insider's Panel -- Discussion with producer Robin Cowie (The Blair Witch Project), directors Jai Dixit (It All Happens Incredibly Fast) and Michael Keller (Vampires Anonymous), producer Ryan Mummert (J Films), film festival programmer Jean Tait, writer-director Aaron Harnick (Araca Films) and film distributors Mark Bailey (Manhattan Pictures) and Todd Greene (IFC Films). $10. Cummer Museum.

SUNDAY

2 p.m.: Documentary seminar -- With Barak Goodman, producer of Peabody Award-winning documentary The Lost Children of Rockdale County and producer/director of the Emmy Award-winning Scottsboro: An American Tragedy. $10. Theatre Jacksonville.

2 p.m.: Starbucks Coffee Chat -- Hour-long discussion with producers Robin Cowie (The Blair Witch Project), Mitch Harbeson (Alloy Entertainment Group), Paul Campbell (It All Happens Incredibly Fast) and Ryan Mummert (J Films). Riverside store.

3 p.m.: Jacksonville's Legacy in Motion Picture History -- John Reitzhammer discusses the city's silent-film heyday, with clips from some of those movies. $10. The Ritz.

3:30 p.m.: Actors panel -- Discussion with actors Linden Ashby (Mortal Kombat, Melrose Place), Warren Skeels (Surfacing), Paul Popowich, (Vampires Anonymous), Trent McMullen (It All Happens Incredibly Fast), Bronson Pinchot (Winning Girls Through Pyschic Mind Control). …

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