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MAY 11-17
Little Rock Film Festival Celebrates The Opening of The Ron Robinson Theater

Little Rock Film Festival Celebrates The Opening of The Ron Robinson Theater

Coming a long way since 2007, the Little Rock Film Festival has grown to be one of the most recognized film festivals in the country. Earlier last year, many of you joined us at the ground breaking ceremony for  the 315-seat state of the art Ron Robinson Theater, which will serve as the flagship home for the LRFF.  To celebrate the opening, the LRFF and CALS (Central Arkansas Library System), is programming a full week of film events–all free of charge and open to the public–to show off this beautiful new facility. Ron Robinson Theater’s Opening Week Program Schedule (January 17-January 25, 2014) Friday, January 17 Ain’t in It For My Health – 7:00pm A documentary about Arkansas native Levon Helm followed by a Q&A with Amy Helm Amy Helm and Handsome Strangers Concert – 9pm   Saturday, January 18 Best of the LRFF’s 48 Hour Film Project – 3:00pm La Grande Fete, Surprise Party, Abbatoir, Vacation, The Door, The Plumber, Last Chance Romance, Drain, The Third Save, Deuces Sleepy LaBeef Rides Again – 7:00pm Documentary/concert film about Arkansas native Sleepy LaBeef followed by a Q&A with Sleepy LaBeef and Dave Pomeroy Sleepy LaBeef and Dave Pomeroy concert – 8:30pm   Monday, January 20 Moms Mabley (courtesy HBO Documentary Films) – 7:00pm A special MLK day presentation about the iconic African American standup comedienne Jackie “Moms” Mabley, who broke racial and sexual boundaries and continues to inspire comedians to this day. In her directorial debut, Whoopi Goldberg pays homage to this pioneering legend.   Tuesday, January 21 Locals Rule – 7:30pm These standout  Arkansas short films from the first seven...

LRFF2012 Closing Day Highlights

  The Final Day of the sixth annual Little Rock Film Festival was one bustling with special events and filmmaker comradery. In addition to the many excellent screenings of the final day, there were two amazing talks. First off, the Women in Film panel featured the lovely Lea Thompson moderating a discussion with several of the women filmmakers whose films were featured in the festival. Thompson starred in and produced the film The Trouble with the Truth, which was talked about by festival goers throughout the weekend. Also featured were Martha Stephens, director of Pilgrim Song; Jenny Deller, director of Future Weather; and Renee O’Connor, star of the short film Infinity, as well as former television star of Xena: Warrior Princess. Over all, it was an upbeat panel—Thompson was charming as ever, admitting excitement over how independent film is giving women more opportunities to work on and create films despite the mainstream film industry’s failure to include more female personnel and directors. Though directors Deller and Stephens did explain that sometimes on set they can sense resentment when they have to be firm with male cast and crew, they never feel like it’s an obstacle they can’t handle. All panelists confirmed that despite occasional snags in adjusting to being in roles of power in filmmaking, they typically feel like it’s a professional world becoming more hospitable to prominent female roles. Immediately following the Women in Film panel was a discussion moderated by Tim Basham of Paste Magazine with Little Rock–native and rising directorial star, Jeff Nichols. Nichols, fresh off of a Cannes screening and eighteen-minute standing ovation surrounding his latest feature (that was shot...

LRFF2012 Day 2 Highlights

The special events of Day 2 of the LRFF offered some truly unique screening experiences. For starters, yesterday afternoon we gathered at the Little Rock Zoo to meet Jewell, an Asian elephant who, in her old age, has been outfitted with a prosthetic boot to correct the pain and discomfort she was experiencing in her gait, similar to the elephants in Windy Borman’s documentary, The Eyes of Thailand, who are given prosthetic legs after they’ve suffered serious injury from landmines. Zookeeper Justin spoke to the crowd about Jewell’s history and the process of creating the boot for her. In fact, Melissa Snell of Snell Prosthetic and Orthotic Labratory, the company who devised the boot for Jewell, was even in the crowd and mentioned the struggles and all the tiny adjustments they had to make to find the perfect fit. Filmmaker Borman was also on hand to ask questions—she expressed pleasure that Jewell was allowed to roam on the sloping grassy garden instead of having to adjust to her prosthetic on concrete. After the screening of her compassionate documentary, Borman answered audience questions about the elephant hospital in Thailand, how she came across her subject, raised the money to return, and how, unfortunately, the elephant hospital is currently struggling financially. It’s a new film, only out since April, and Borman hopes to screen the film at the elephant hospital to raise money to keep it and the courageous efforts of founder Soraida Salwala and her team going strong. The evening discussion with Arkansas-born director Jay Russell at the Arkansas Arts Center was postponed just for a bit due to technical difficulties—Russell...