Oscar Shorts & Adrian + Art Directors Movie Series & Gen-Art Film Festival

Lavatory-Lovestory Konstantin Bronzit

“Shorts!,” the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences program featuring the 2009 Oscar nominees in the Animated and Live Action Short Film categories, will be presented in New York City on Saturday, Feb. 14, at the Academy Theater at Lighthouse International (111 East 59th Street). There will be two separate screenings of the nominated films, the first at noon and an encore presentation at 4 p.m.

Film historian Robert Osborne, who is a columnist for The Hollywood Reporter, host of Turner Classic Movies, and author of the new book 80 Years of the Oscar: The Official History of the Academy Awards, will act as host of the noon screening. Osborne will also be available at 11 a.m. to sign copies of his book.

The 2009 Animated Short Film and Live Action Short Film nominees are:

Animated Short Film

La Maison en Petits Cubes, Kunio Kato, director
Lavatory-Lovestory (top photo), Konstantin Bronzit, director
Oktapodi, Emud Mokhberi and Thierry Marchand, directors
Presto, Doug Sweetland, director
This Way Up, Alan Smith and Adam Foulkes, directors

Live Action Short Film

Auf der Strecke (On the Line), Reto Caffi, director
Manon on the Asphalt, Elizabeth Marre and Olivier Pont, directors
New Boy, Steph Green, director, and Tamara Anghie, producer
The Pig (above), Tivi Magnusson, producer, and Dorte Høgh, director
Spielzeugland (Toyland), Jochen Alexander Freydank, producer-director

Tickets for “Shorts!” are $5 for the general public and $3 for Academy members and students with a valid ID. Tickets may be purchased online at www.oscars.org beginning Monday, Feb. 2, or at the Academy box office on the day of the event (subject to availability).

The box office will open at 10:30 a.m.; doors open at 11 a.m. for the first screening and 3 p.m. for the encore screening. All seating is unreserved. For additional information call (212) 821-9251 or visit www.oscars.org.

The 2009 Academy Awards ceremony will be held on Sunday, Feb. 22, 2009, at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center. In the US, the Oscarcast will be televised live by ABC.

Adrian Presentation at the Lasky-DeMille Barn in Hollywood

“Adrian: Nothing from a Store,” a lecture on designer Gilbert Adrian (best known as Adrian) and his time working with Cecil B. DeMille will be presented by author Richard Adkins, who's currently working on an Adrian biography, on Wednesday, March 11, at 7:30 pm at at the Hollywood Heritage Museum's Lasky-DeMille Barn at 2100 North Highland Avenue (across from the Hollywood Bowl).

Adrian, actress Janet Gaynor's husband from 1939 to his death in 1959 (theirs was a curious relationship), began his Hollywood career in the mid-1920s. He became associated with DeMille in 1925, later rising to the position of head of the costume department at the DeMille (later Pathé-DeMille) studio. When the producer-director moved his company to the MGM lot in late 1928, Adrian went with him. 

From then on, Adrian's reputation skyrocketed, as he (over)dressed the likes of Joan Crawford, Greta Garbo, Norma Shearer, Jean Harlow, and Myrna Loy.

Tickets: Hollywood Heritage Members: $5.00. Non-members: $8.00. Free parking, and refreshments available.

Art Director Film Series: American Cinematheque

For the third consecutive year, the Art Directors Guild (ADG) Film Society and the American Cinematheque (AC) are co-hosting a series of monthly screenings highlighting the work of legendary production designers, art directors, and set decorators. The screenings, beginning on March 29, will take place at both the Lloyd E. Rigler Theatre at the Egyptian (6712 Hollywood Boulevard, Hollywood) and the Max Palevsky Theatre at the Aero (1328 Montana Avenue, Santa Monica).

Among the feature films are:

  • The Wolf Man (1941) and Gaily Gaily (1969), both designed by Honorary Oscar winner Robert F. Boyle (who's turning 100 next October);
  • the campy sci-fi capers Flash Gordon – both the 1936 serial and Dino De Laurentiis' 1980 flick, designed by, respectively, Ralph Berger and Danilo Donati;
  • Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger's 1945 classic Black Narcissus, designed by Alfred Junge;
  • Ken Russell's kaleidoscopic 1971 musical The Boy Friend, designed by Tony Walton;
  • and clips from both the 1960s Star Trek TV series and the upcoming big-screen release (above).

The 2009 screening series schedule is as follows. All screenings start at 5:30 PM:

March 29, “Robert F. Boyle Centennial” (The Wolf Man and Gaily Gaily), Egyptian Theatre
The season kicks off with a double bill “Robert F. Boyle Centennial” as a tribute to the legendary and iconic production designer, who will celebrate his 100th birthday in October. The Wolf Man (1941) and Gaily Gaily (1969), two of Boyle's most amazing examples of imaginative production design, will be shown. The Wolf Man, which stars Claude Rains, Lon Chaney, Jr., Warren William and Ralph Bellamy, is the classic story of a man's transformation into a werewolf. The film is recognized as one of the iconic Universal monster pictures, taking place in classic old European castles, villages and misty forests, all accomplished within the studio lot.

Gaily Gaily, on the other hand, mixes both real locations and the backlot to seamlessly create turn-of-the-century Chicago. Starring Beau Bridges, the film is about an innocent young writer who learns the ways of yellow journalism while working for a top Chicago paper. Boyle's sets include a revamp of the backlot, in which he added an elevated train, as well as a newspaper office, the entire stock exchange, and one of the most beautiful and opulent bordellos ever put on film. 2008 Academy Award® honoree Boyle will be personally present between the screenings to participate in a discussion to be moderated by Production Designer John Muto.

April 26, “Designing for World War II” (They Were Expendable), Aero Theatre
The April screening will focus on the theme “Designing for World War II” by showing John Ford's classic film, They Were Expendable (1945) by art director Malcolm Brown and photographed in stunning black and white by Joseph H. August ASC, co-founder of the American Society of Cinematographers. Based on the book by William L. White and starring Robert Montgomery, John Wayne, Donna Reed, Ward Bond, and a classic ensemble of some of Ford's favorite players, this classic naval war film is a dramatized account of the role of the American PT boats in the defense of the Philippines during World War II. Production Designer Tom Walsh will moderate a panel discussion following the screening.

May 24, “Designing for Science Fiction” (Flash Gordon), Egyptian Theatre
In May the series will look at “Designing for Science Fiction” by showing two versions of the same film created in different decades, Flash Gordon (1936 & 1980) and honoring art directors Ralph Berger and Danilo Donati, respectively. Based on the 1930s comic strip, the plot follows the adventures of Flash Gordon, Dale Arden and Professor Zarkov, who travel to the planet Mongo and find themselves fighting the tyrant, Ming the Merciless, to save Earth. Art Director Steve Berger, son of the original FLASH GORDON Art Director Ralph Berger, will be present to participate in a discussion, along with a panel of distinguished film artists between the screenings, to be moderated by John Muto.

June 28, “Designing for Adventure” (Island at the Top of the World), Aero Theatre

Island at the Top of the World (1974) will be shown in June with a “Designing for Adventure” theme. Designed by Peter Ellenshaw, the film was nominated for an Academy Award® for Best Art Direction. Starring David Hartman and Donald Sinden, the film tells the story of a father who puts together an expedition team to find his son, who vanished while searching for a long-lost Viking community somewhere in uncharted Arctic regions. A panel of distinguished film artists will follow, moderated by John Muto.

July 26, “Designing for 3 Strip Technicolor” (Black Narcissus), Egyptian Theatre

The July screening focuses on “Designing for 3 Strip Technicolor” with a screening of Black Narcissus (1947), designed by Alfred Junge. Junge won an Academy Award® for his art direction in this film. Actresses Deborah Kerr, Flora Robson and Jean Simmons star in this film about a group of nuns who attempt to establish a religious community high in the Himalayas. Not only do they have to contend with suspicious locals and the elements, but their own demons emerge as well. The film is justly famous for its Himalayan scenery, every frame of which was photographed on the studio's backlot and stages in England. A panel discussion will follow, to be moderated by Tom Walsh.

August 30, “Designing for the Backlot” (The Chase), Aero Theatre

“Designing for the Backlot” is the theme for the August screening, where the film The Chase, designed by Richard Day (My Gal Sal, A Streetcar Named Desire, On the Waterfront) will be shown. Directed by Arthur Penn, screenplay by Lillian Hellman from the play by Horton Foote, and starring Marlon Brando, Jane Fonda and Robert Redford, the film portrays how the escape of one man from prison, in one night, profoundly affects the inhabitants of a small Southern town. A panel discussion will follow with leading production designers who will further discuss the creation and use of backlots in film.

September 27, “Designing for Star Trek: Past and Future,” Egyptian Theatre

In September the theme of the screening will be “Designing for Star Trek: Past and Future.” Created by Gene Roddenberry, the original television series was nominated for five Emmy Awards® from 1967-1969. In mid-2009, Paramount Pictures will release a new Star Trek, starring Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Eric Bana and Simon Pegg. Clips from the original television series and past feature films, as well as the 2009 film release, will be shown in tandem with a unique panel discussion amongst leading designers, effects artists and veteran alumni –both past and present– of this enduring cinematic franchise.

October 25, “Designing for Musicals” (The Boy Friend), Aero Theatre

The final film in the series, The Boy Friend (1971), designed by master production designer, Tony Walton, will focus on the art of designing musicals for the screen. Director, producer and screenwriter Ken Russell tells the story of an assistant stage manager (played by Twiggy) of a threadbare theatrical troupe, who has to take over for the injured leading lady at a matinee when a Hollywood director just happens to be scouting for actors. She also happens to secretly be in love with the leading man (Christopher Gable) - and she imagines a series of spectacular musical fantasy numbers starring the two of them. A distinguished panel of design and musical theatre professionals will participate in a discussion at the end of the screening.

Representing the ADG are president, Thomas A. Walsh and production designer, John Muto. Working with them are the American Cinematheque's Gwen Deglise and Chris D. The series is in part sponsored by trade publication Below The Line.

General admission: $10. American Cinematheque members: $7. Students/Seniors with valid ID: $8. All screenings start at 5:30 p.m. 24-hour ticket information is available at 323-466-FILM (3456).

Gen-Art

PRESS RELEASE: The 14th Annual Gen Art Film Festival kicks off on April 1, 2009 in New York City. The Gen Art Film Festival (GAFF)'s unique format showcases seven features and seven shorts from emerging filmmakers which are followed by seven premiere parties. The festival allows film lovers to experience a movie premiere like a true insider. Each night of this cutting edge festival is an interactive experience, allowing filmmakers, media, and the audience to share in the excitement.  The festival will be taking place at SVA; the completely redesigned, state-of-the-art Visual Arts Theater on West 23rd Street between 8-9th Avenue.

Adding to the anticipation, the star-studded LYMELIFE is set to open the GAFF festival.  Executive produced by Martin Scorsese and Leonard Loventhal and starring Alec Baldwin, Cynthia Nixon, Jill Hennessy, Emma Roberts, Kieran Culkin, Rory Culkin, and Timothy Hutton, LYMELIFE world-premiered at the 2008 Toronto Film Festival, where it received the coveted Prize of International Critics Award and had its U.S. debut at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival. The GAFF opening will serve as the official New York premiere and will kick-off LYMELIFE's theatrical release. The film is co-written by Gen Art alums, brothers Derick Martini (Writer/Director) and Steven Martini (Writer) and marks Dericks directorial debut. They also co-wrote “Goat on Fire and Smiling Fish” which premiered at the 2000 GAFF. LYMELIFE is being released by Screen Media Films in New York on Wednesday, April 8th and in Los Angeles on April 17th, with additional markets to follow.

“It is incredibly exciting to continue to support our alumni filmmakers as they grow in their careers and as artists,” said Film Division Vice President, Jeffrey Abramson. “We are not only thrilled to have the Martinis back as our opening night filmmakers, but their film LYMELIFE, which is set in New York, strikes a deep chord with audiences who are seeking honesty and reflection on core values during these difficult times.”

Entering its 14th year, GAFF introduces audiences to films by emerging North American filmmakers, awarding prestigious Grand Jury Prizes for Best Feature and Best Short, as well as presenting audience awards for Best Feature, Best Short and the “Stargazer Award” honoring breakout talent for excellence in acting.

Gen Art offers both members and film fans an active role in the selection process, by forming screening committees comprised of young professionals, where they collectively sort through approximately 1,000 films and advance favorites to the programming committee for further consideration.  The Programming Committee consists of experts from various walks of the entertainment industry.

This year's Programming Committee includes: Celine Rattray (Plum Pictures), Erik Davis (Cinematical.com), Liz Berger (42 West), David Pomes (Alumnus Director - Cook County), Julia Nickson (Alumnus Actor - Half-Life), Kenny Goodman (Good Management), Mike Jones (writer), Brian Chirls (chirls.com), and Deborah McIntosh (William Morris Independent).

Kevin Bacon, whose film “Loverboy” opened the 2005 GAFF recently told the media that, “Gen Art inspires me as a filmmaker. It is so exciting to share something with a really young, super hip audience.”

Other successful films from past festivals include: “Wristcutters: A Love Story” directed by Goran Dukic, (nominated for two 2007 Independent Spirit Awards), “Four Eyed Monsters” (nominated for two 2007 Indie Spirit Awards), Lori Silverbush & Michael Skolnik's “On the Outs” (nominated for two 2006 Indie Spirit Awards, the award winning 2007 documentary “Sharkwater”,  Brian Dannelly's “Saved!,” the documentaries “Hands on a Hard Body” and “My Date with Drew” and early work by the likes of Azazel Jacobs, Cary Fukunaga, Gerardo Naranjo, The Duplass Brothers, Jesse Peretz, Richard Shepard, Tim Blake Nelson and Brad Anderson whose debut feature “The Darien Gap” opened the first Gen Art Film Festival. 

Additionally, 7 of 28 shorts GAFF has shown in the past four years have been nominated or have won a Student Academy Award.

Advance Full-Festival Passes are available for a limited time at a special discounted rate. Full-festival passes will grant you access to all seven film premieres and after-parties including our Opening Night red-carpet event. For more information on GAFF, please visit www.genart.org/filmfestival. 

Synopsis:

LYMELIFE, a story about the dark side of suburban paradise and the loss of innocence centers on two deeply troubled, dysfunctional families during the late 1970s.  The film revolves around an awkward, sensitive 15-year old boy, Scott Bartlett (Rory Culkin), whose family life is turned upside-down after an outbreak of Lyme disease hits the community spreading illness and paranoia.  Scott's parents a workaholic father, Mickey (Alec Baldwin) and an overprotective mother, Brenda (Jill Hennessy) are on the verge of a divorce as his older brother Jim (Kieran Culkin) is about to ship off for war.  

Complicating matters, Scott has fallen in love with his next door neighbor, Adrianna Bragg (Emma Roberts).  Adrianna seems to be the only person in the world who understands Scott demonstrated by her equally troubled, less affluent family including an uptight mother, Melissa (Cynthia Nixon), carrying on a not-so-clandestine love affair, and a father, Charlie (Timothy Hutton), slowly slipping away from the effects of Lyme disease.  Both profoundly funny and deeply moving, LYMELIFE looks at first love and family.

ABOUT GEN ART

Gen Art is the leading arts and entertainment organization dedicated to showcasing the best emerging talent in film, fashion, visual arts and music. 2009 marks its 15th Anniversary. With offices in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Miami and San Francisco, Gen Art has succeeded in launching the careers of many young filmmakers, fashion designers, visual artists and musicians, providing them with high-profile events that welcome industry professionals and consumers alike. For more info, visit www.genart.org.

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