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Film Festival Coverage: 12th Annual PHILADELPHIA INDEPENDENT FILM FESTIVAL

Sunday, April 28, 2019


Tinsel & Tine's

COVERAGE OF

the

PHILADELPHIA INDEPENDENT FILM 

FILM FESTIVAL 2019


By Le Anne Lindsay, Editor

Starting with our Signature

5 QUESTION INTERVIEWS with several Filmmakers screening during #PIFF12

Running May 8 -11, 2019


5 Question Interviews with BLACKSTAR FILM FESTIVAL FILMMAKERS
5 Question Interviews with FIRSTGLANCE FILM FESTIVAL FILMMAKERS
5 Question Interviews with PHILADELPHIA ASIAN AMERICAN FILM MAKERS


 RAG DOLL

Feature length film directed by Bailey Kobe
starring and produced by Shannon Murray

Rag Doll Movie Starring Shannon Murray with Le Anne Lindsay Tinsel & Tine
PIFF12 Actress Shannon Murray with (Me) Le Anne Lindsay
Synopsis: Nora (Shannon Murray) is that girl: the one who works overtime, helps out her family by all means, and leaves little for herself. She can’t even fathom a love interest. But with her one free hour a day, she takes out life’s hardships at the local mixed martial arts gym, where she is no longer who she is, if just for that hour.

When complications in her real life cause it to crumble, she is lead to enter a championship tournament as a novice. But with life outside of the ring becoming harder and harder, will she even make it to the competition without succumbing to the violence in her life outside of the ring?

This film is one I see easily getting distribution. It's got a strong female lead in Nora, she's scrappy with a street smart attitude, yet also a devoted caretaker to a dying mother, who's not exactly sweet and helpless. The film pulls you into the daily struggles of this young woman who could be heading for greatness or a crash and burn.



All female fighters in RAG DOLL are women who have grown up in the sport, around the sport, or have had extensive training in MMA fighting. ​ With the help of stellar fight choreographer Martin Wheeler, these powerhouse women did their own stunts to convey the reality of the violent world their characters live in.

Cast: Shannon Murray, Dot-Marie Jones, Stephanie Erb, Roxanne Sanchez, Lateefah Holder & Hope Shapiro add excellent levity, Dante Basco, Hugh B Holub, Eddie Alfano



VENERATION
Filmmaker & Producer: Frank Lisi
Screening Date: Wed. May 8th 9:15pm
TRAILER
Facebook | DreamQuest Entertainment

Synopsis: A holy man is tormented by demons for the possession of his soul.
1. T&T: In a nutshell what was the main inspiration for your film?

Frank Lisi: My main inspiration prior to writing the script was the amazing history of Saint Padre Pio Pietrelcina.

2.T&T: Was there a point where you almost didn't finish your film? And if so, what pushed you forward?

Frank: Actually there were more then just one instance when we almost threw in the towel. My lead actor suffered a stroke at the beginning of production so instead of producing a feature length film, I salvaged what I already had filmed and created a short vs shelving the film.

3. T&T: Give a quick shout out to your creative team and anyone who helped get your film from an idea to screening at PIFF12.

Frank: A big shout out to my crew: Assistant Director Sonny Vellozzi and Editor Robert Bizik. My SF/X make up artist Sonja Century, Director of Photography Scott Kaufman and special effects supervisor David Gechman.

4. T&T: Tell us a bit about the music of your film? Or does food play a big part in your film? Or answer both.

Frank: The music for Veneration was extremely important for me. I was looking for a score similar to that of the film Gladiator by Lisa Gerard. I found magic from the vocals of Sarah Cromwell for this score for Veneration.

5. T&T: What does it mean to you to screen your film at the 12th Annual Philadelphia Independent Film Festival ?

Frank:Screening not one but two of my production at PIFF#12 is exciting for us all because both films Veneration and Offstage Elements were mostly filmed in Philadelphia and the surrounding area and the cast and crew mostly consist of Philadelphia actors and crew members.

STILL
Filmmaker & Producer: Michael Licisyn
Screening Date: Sat. May 11th 6:20pm
TRAILER
Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Mixed Nuts Productions

Synopsis: Vanessa is a photojournalist who takes it upon herself to investigate a local disturbance. She quickly finds that there are some things only her camera can see.
1. T&T: In a nutshell what was the main inspiration for your film?

Michael Licisyn: STILL is out of our usual comfort zone. We’ve been known to primarily make silly comedy or sentimental dramedy. Thriller and horror films are genres we’ve seldom dabbled in. We worked with Cinevore Studios on their sci-fi/horror film Vessel and it was fun to produce from a visual standpoint and we were eager to jump back into that style.

2.T&T: Was there a point where you almost didn't finish your film? And if so, what pushed you forward?

Michael: We shot the film in the summer of 2017 over 2 days months apart. The film was picture locked by that Fall but it wasn’t finished until the following Fall 2018. Post production was long since we were all working full time jobs finishing it up in our spare time. But we didn’t doubt that it would get done. We just took our time which is unusual for our crew.

3. T&T: Give a quick shout out to your creative team and anyone who helped get your film from an idea to screening at PIFF12.

Michael: Everybody in the cast and crew deserve a shout out. Without Rachel’s performance, the film doesn’t work. We’re using the Jaws concept of not really showing the threat at hand and she is on camera for 90% of the film having to convey the suspense and mystery. Anthony is one of my favorite actors to work with. Both actors are a pleasure to have and make any production a fun time. Sarah as our AD was instrumental on set since I was not only directing, but DP-ing as well. Sarah runs a set better than anybody I’ve ever known and can’t imagine one without her. Both Joe’s on our production crew are hard working and will do whatever they can to make the production the most successful it can. Chris with the sound mix and Kevin with the music were vital to making the ambience and suspense of the film work. And of course Matt Conant and Stephanie Yuhas who are our saving graces and lucky charms. Mixed Nuts Productions films work because of the team of the talented people.

4. T&T: Tell us a bit about the music of your film? Or does food play a big part in your film? Or answer both.

Michael: The music was composed by Kevin Stahl who scored several of our previous projects. We went back and forth before coming to a tone that makes the ambience and suspense of the film work. However, there is no food in this, though. Sorry.

5. T&T: What does it mean to you to screen your film at the 12th Annual Philadelphia Independent Film Festival ?

Michael: It’s an honor to be screening on the big screen in Center City and nominated along with so many great films. STILL has enjoyed a great deal of success so far and it has been humbling but to be on the docket in a big way in our home city is the most rewarding for us.





DEAD GIVEAWAY
Filmmaker & Producer: Amanda Frederick
Screening Date: Friday. May 10th 6:40pm
TRAILER
Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Shoestring Gold Films

Synopsis: After a long hard night of drinking, Jill wakes up next to a man she doesn't know in her bed... who has been stabbed to death. With the help of her friend Lia, she tries to figure out who the murderer is, all while trying to hide the issue from her roommate.
1. T&T: In a nutshell what was the main inspiration for your film?

Amanda Frederick: The inspiration for DEAD GIVEAWAY was early 90s movies from Tarantino, Kevin Smith, and Robert Rodriguez. Putting women in the roles of the two heroes who have witty banter and are trying to get out of trouble was the twist on those movies that writer, Ian Kimble, wanted to see. So he wrote it!

2.T&T: Was there a point where you almost didn't finish your film? And if so, what pushed you forward?

Amanda: I think there's a moment (or several) in any film production that makes you think that the project won't get finished, and DEAD GIVEAWAY wasn't any different. Despite whatever obstacles that we faced, we had a lot of people counting on us - everyone who worked so hard on the film, everyone that supported us along the way. But most of all, we pushed forward because we had a goal of completing a great film, and we're not into disappointing ourselves.

3. T&T: Give a quick shout out to your creative team and anyone who helped get your film from an idea to screening at PIFF12.

Amanda: Bold statement - we have the greatest crew around. Our team is not only the best at what they do, but they are humble and fantastic people to work with. Our cast gave us so much inspiration and energy to make it through the longest of shoot days. We'd also love to thank our parents, wives, and family who have continuously supported us and our endeavors from the beginning. They've been there for us, they've donated money to our crowdfunding, they've babysat so mommy (Amanda) can go make movies. They've always been our greatest asset.

4. T&T: Tell us a bit about the music of your film? Or does food play a big part in your film? Or answer both.

Amanda: Food was a big part behind the scenes! We had a great cook making our meals that kept us healthy and charged up for the shoot days.

5. T&T: What does it mean to you to screen your film at the 12th Annual Philadelphia Independent Film Festival ?

Amanda: We're not only screening DEAD GIVEAWAY at PIFF, but it will be the world premiere. So to be able to premiere our film in Philly feels like fate. Philly is our home city, it's where our company started, it's where we shot DEAD GIVEAWAY. In many ways, Philly is our 3rd leading lady in DEAD GIVEAWAY. Premiering at the 12th PIFF is a great honor and it feels perfect to be home.



THE GREAT AMERICAN DEPRESSION: I'M AWARE (65M)
Filmmaker, Producer, Writer, Composer ...:  
Sebastian H. Foxworth
Screening Date: Friday. May 10th 6:00pm
TRAILER
Facebook | IMDB | FoxworthyMedia

Synopsis: The film is about ten people from various walks of life who open up and tell their stories about their battles with depression, mental illness and suicide.
1. T&T: In a nutshell what was the main inspiration for your film?

Sebastian Foxworth: My mother. She suffered from Bipolar Disorder: Manic Depression, Paranoid Schizophrenia during a time (60's-90's) when families hid these types of things from the public and medicine was just learning themselves how to treat these different types of mental diseases. Also Facebook. I noticed a lot of depressing posts from former classmates and friends and became concerned and started in-boxing them directly to check on them. The idea then hit me to ask them if they would mind talking in front of a camera because their experiences might help others who are suffering silently like my mother did. I can say I personally have known every single person in this film over 25 years minus our eighteen year old in the film who I've known since she was four.

2.T&T: Was there a point where you almost didn't finish your film? And if so, what pushed you forward?

Sebastian: Nope. Never (hope this short answer makes up for my lengthy first one).

3. T&T: Give a quick shout out to your creative team and anyone who helped get your film from an idea to screening at PIFF12.

Sebastian: First to God for giving me the insight that a film like this could help others with their mental health struggles. Next, my domestic partner Sharon for allowing me to pursue this and other film projects. Danny Monk, Nicole Young, Ryk Lewis, Pati Woeller, Tiffany Battles, Scott Rosenfelt (producer of Home Alone), Jenn Cook, Haley Smith and Hip Hop Legend "Special Ed" Ed Archer (who also Executive Produced).

4. T&T: Tell us a bit about the music of your film? Or does food play a big part in your film? Or answer both.

Sebastian: Music is not only an intricate part of any film, but a personal love of mine as much as filmmaking itself. There are eighteen tracks on this film of which I did seventeen of them and my buddy Ryk Lewis (yup, he's in the film too) did a beautiful song that plays during the closing of the film and over the end credits. My homie Jay Reezy (Philly) arranged and re-mixed the opening track "Tell Me Why" to a point that you'll be grooving to the beat and crying at the same time. My niece Aaliyah (yup, named after the Aaliyah) does a cute rendition of "Smile" that plays over the end credits too. The soundtrack has an eclectic mix of: R&B, Pop, Groove, Gospel, Jazz, Blues Rock and Theatrical music. Really mixed up, just like life. You can hear it all on soundcloud.com/poppafoxx

5. T&T: What does it mean to you to screen your film at the 12th Annual Philadelphia Independent Film Festival ?

Sebastian: Screening at PIFFF#12 is HUGE to me. I've followed the fest for years and told myself that when I completed this project I would hold out for this fest as the Philly premiere and was excited and honored to be accepted into it. The only thing nicer would be to win the category.


DEAR LIFE, YOU SUCK! Journal Entry One
Writer/Director: Darrelle Williams
Screening Date: Saturday. May 11th 7:15pm
TRAILER
Instagram (film) | Instagram (dir)

Synopsis: A married couple struggle with maintaining a healthy relationship while following their dreams. They find themselves at a crossroad when David who spent his life checking boxes decides to settle after his dreams are deferred. Causing a rift between two people who see the world differently.
1. T&T: In a nutshell what was the main inspiration for your film?

Darrelle Williams: Telling the story of David and Savannah was important to me because I wanted to show black love from a different perspective. I wanted to celebrate black love by changing the narrative on a simple story. I wanted to present a young couple experiencing a tough season in their life and both be willing to make it work. I also wanted to highlight the journey of chasing our dreams and showing how its not easy. This is only a small view of their life so I wanted to touch on things that mattered to me.

2.T&T: Was there a point where you almost didn't finish your film? And if so, what pushed you forward?

Darrelle: Yes! It took a lot of prayer and preparation. This film took three years to make. It was originally a feature film with an ensemble cast. In the process of making the feature, I hit so many roadblocks, including two failed attempts at crowdfunding. After a while, I ended up canceling the film altogether, just figured it wasn't going to work. But that nagging feeling to tell my story wouldn't leave me alone. One day I saw the add from scribe video center about an 8-week production program and I had to jump on it. Then I took David and Savannah's story from the feature and turned it into a short. For me, it was a when preparation meets opportunity scenario. If I hadn't gone through those years of working on the feature I don't think I would have been prepared for the opportunity that came through scribe. I wouldn't have gotten the film finished.

3. T&T: Give a quick shout out to your creative team and anyone who helped get your film from an idea to screening at PIFF12.

Darrelle: Firstly God because without God the film wouldn't have gotten made. I have to thank Scribe Video Center and my instructor Marie Hinson. Also, my script editor Ben Tobias who spent hours helping me craft the story clearly. Special thanks to my assistant director and classmate Danielle DeLoatch and sound man Mike Frazier. We were a small crew but we got it done. And lastly the amazing actors Hyresh Davis and Nastassja Baset. We only had three days to shoot and they did an amazing job bringing those characters to life.

4. T&T: Tell us a bit about the music of your film? Or does food play a big part in your film? Or answer both.

Darrelle: I chose jazz because it set the tone. For Dear Life, it created a sense of warmth. For me, I wanted the music to take people on a journey and jazz was the perfect choice.

5. T&T: What does it mean to you to screen your film at the 12th Annual Philadelphia Independent Film Festival ?

Darrelle: Honestly, it's an honor. When I got the email I thought someone was playing a joke on me. But after some extensive research, I found out it wasn't. I am really looking forward to the festival.




HUSH
Writer/Director: Joseph McGovern
Screening Date: Saturday. May 11th 12:00pm
TRAILER
Facebook | Twitter |

11min CAST: Anthony Scanish, Melissa Damas, Kristin Teporelli, Erik Searle
1. T&T: In a nutshell what was the main inspiration for your film?

Joseph McGovern: The main inspiration for “Hush” was an unfortunate #metoo experience - a woman I dated endured and described to me. In the midst of this story, which never left my thoughts, after pondering for two years and trying to figure out how to make a difference with stories taking light between colleges and entertainment industry I began writing the screenplay but wanted to take it a step further.

2.T&T: Was there a point where you almost didn't finish your film? And if so, what pushed you forward?

Joseph: After production wrapped for “Hush”, members of my production company went in different directions; they were no longer able to fully follow my original creative vision, and weren't as invested in the importance of the project, so I purchased all ownership rights to every aspect of the short film and parted from the company. Angry, stressed, working doubles because I lost my full time job, and with no post-production experience... yet, I couldn’t allow this film to fail - I believed in the #metoo movement too much, and cared about those who were personally affected by the message of “Hush”,  I couldn’t let them down. I believed in my abilities to think critically and problem solve. I refused to give up my path to independent filmmaking, and with the help of some colorists in Hollywood providing me advice, I was able to teach myself editing and color grading over two years to complete “Hush”.

3. T&T: Give a quick shout out to your creative team and anyone who helped get your film from an idea to screening at PIFF12.

Joseph: I would like to give a special shot out to “Hush” Executive Producers: Constance Reshey, Joseph Fuoco, and Frank Formica and Sound Designer/Composer: Matthew Amadio. You’re the unsung hero’s of this production who never stopped believing in the message, purpose, and completion of “Hush” - who continually inspired me to keep pushing forward and never give up.

4. T&T: Tell us a bit about the music of your film? Or does food play a big part in your film? Or answer both.

Joseph: The original score created by talented Matthew Amadio is the driving force behind the entire experience of “Hush.” The score he created is a crucial element given the nature of the short as a silent experimental film. Matt was able to capture the audience and drive their emotions within each scene assisting the film’s progression from start to finish.

5. T&T: What does it mean to you to screen your film at the 12th Annual Philadelphia Independent Film Festival ?

Joseph: I started creating films the tail end of college around spring of 2011, hadn’t considered entering the festival circuit until the spring of 2013 when I felt my filmmaking was beginning to take shape in the direction I wanted. While I was working at The Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and began researching film festivals around the area I could submit to, I found PIFF. After researching this film festival I knew I wanted to screen one of my films here. When I found out “Hush” was not only selected but nominated Best Thriller - my team and I were ecstatic!




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is about discovering what I find pleasing in screening & eating - in case you missed it, the name is a play on Tinseltown using the Tines of a Fork.

Feel free to send me info on a film or new restaurant you'd like me to highlight.
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Will there ever be a cap on movie prices?

Will we one day pay $20 a pop?

Why don't we pay on a scale?

A crap movie like everything Adam Sandler has ever done should cost about $4.50.
Big action movies like"Lord of the Rings", "Iron Man," "Transformers" are worth $10.
Woody Allen movie or something like "Silver Linings Playbook" $6-$7.
A chick flick or light comedy $5.75 and most Indie Films $5.25.

You could even do it by seasons - all summer block busters from May to August - $10
Sept - November 15th $3.50 - $4
Back to $10 for Thanksgiving and Christmas etc...

Or you can do it by A Actors ($9 - $10), B Actors ($6 - $7) TV actors on the big screen ($3.50 - $4)

Surely I'm not the first person to realize this makes sense. Has it been voted on in the Motion Picture Industry and then vetoed? If so, why?

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