Worthy local indies to screen at worldwide film festivals

“In Memoriam”

STEPHEN CONE’S DRAMA, “In Memoriam” will compete with 65 films when it premieres at the 33rd Big Muddy Film Festival, Feb. 18-27 at SIU in Carbondale, one of the oldest festivals affiliated with a university in the country.
Ian Forester, Kelly O’Sullivan, Sadie Rogers, and Chris Carr star in the story of a young man investigating the death of a couple who died in a freak accident.

Cone produced “In Memoriam” and his “The Wise Kids,” about a group of teens questioning their place in the church, with Gina LoPiccolo.  (Cone’s father is a Baptist minister.) Stephanie Dufford shot both films.

In Memoriam also screens at the Buffalo/Niagara Film Festival, April 8-17. See conearts.com

Ben Russell
LOCAL FILMMAKER BEN RUSSELL’S “A Spell to Ward Off the Darkness” won a special jury award Feb. 2 at the CineMart film market at the Rotterdam Film Festival. 

Russell (“Let Each One Go Where He May”) is developing the feature with British collaborator Ben Rivers.

The Norway-set film follows a man living as an arctic hermit, a commune dweller, and a black metal drummer. 

“It’s a social experiment that will unfold, exploring different ways of being a human being in this world,” the CineMart jury said in a statement. 

See http://tiny.cc/spelldarkness

Vic, from Guys Book ClubA TOTAL “SKIT-COM” WEB SERIES called “Guys Book Club,” is a nine-part, 22-minute comedy, produced by George Zwierzynski of Purple Stuff Productions premieres Feb. 19 at The Boundary, 1932 W. Division.

Christopher Meister, Dean Hill, Brian Vogler, Mike Pusateri and Ian Robertson Kibbe play a group of married friends who concoct a reading group as a cover for their “adolescent insanity.”   See guysbookclub.tv

THE INTERRUPTERS, Steven James and Alex Kotlowitz’ Kartemquin Films documentary, about the antiviolence program CeaseFire, has picked up still another award.   It won the IndieWire Sundance poll for most-wanted-to-see film. 

It screens at Big Pond Adelaide, True/False, and Miami International film festivals.  See kartemquin.com/films/the-interrupters
“Black Butterfly” star Mahogany Monae

THREE LOCAL INDIES SCREEN in the Pan African Film Festival in Los Angeles, Feb. 16-23.  They are Mark Harris’ “Black Butterfly”, about a high school swimmer (Mahogany Monae) whose career is jeopardized by sexual assault.

Documentaries screening at PAFF are Darryl Pitts’s Kiss and Tell, about the films that inspired entertainment industry leaders, and Brian Schodorf’s “The Wayman Tisdale Story”, about the basketball star and jazz musician.  See paff.org

PRIDE FILMS AND PLAYS takes entries through March 28 for its Sapphics on Screen lesbian screenplay competition.  Finalists receive a cashed prize and a staged reading in June.  See pridefilmsandplays.com/wpsc.html