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Film fest to highlight TroyFest

A Film Festival presented by the Troy Arts Council, TroyFest and QEW Audio will be one of the highlights of the 2009 TroyFest on April 29.

This event will be Troy’s first Film Festival and will feature screenings beginning at 1 p.m. and continuing almost nonstop throughout the afternoon and then into the night.

John Jinright, TAC member and coordinator of the Film Festival, said the idea for the Film Festival came from a survey he and Pam Allen, also a TAC member, conducted about cultural arts events that the community wanted the TAC to bring to Troy.

“I attended the Performing Arts Exchange in Atlanta and found a ready-made box assortment of films,” Jinright said. “I realized that this could be something that we could grow into and something that we could be proud of. There are a lot of people in the film industry who want to get their work out there so we could actually have expanded our Film Festival to two days but we need to manage what we have and have a successful one-day festival this year and then look to expanding it next year.”

Jinright said there are a lot of people who will appreciate the work of independent filmmakers.

“Ninety-five percent of the films we see are made by the three big corporations,” he said. “These independent films are short films that are mainly family-type films. However, some of the films might have a bad word or two so I would suggest teenage, young adult and adult audiences. Next year, we’ll have animated and shorts films especially for children.”

The Film Festival will open at 1:05 p.m. on Saturday, April 25 at the Cultural Arts Studio with a screening of “The Mirror” which was made in Alabama by a film company in Florence.

“‘The Mirror’ was all shot in Alabama and several members of the film company will be here to discuss the film, answer questions and talk about opportunities in the film industry,” Jinright said. “‘The Mirror’ is about 25 minutes in length and has very little dialogue. It’s the story of a mirror that becomes an heirloom. A newlywed couple buys the mirror at a furniture store and it reflects their family life as the years pass. What happens to the mirror after the parents die is a part of the tender, sweet story.”

Following the screening of “The Mirror,” there will also be a screening of Troy University student films, including a zombie short filmed last month.

“‘Days Gone Bye” is a short film written and directed by Stephen J. Davis, a sophomore English major from Highland Home,” Jinright said. “The film, which Davis says was written in a fevered burst of four hours, is a darkly thrilling tale about two men who find themselves working late in an office. They are unaware that they are about to be plunged into an epidemic of apocalyptic proportions.”

Davis said he never expected ‘Days Gone Bye’ to turn out as well as it did.

“But we had an amazing cast and crew and we turned out a finished product I’m quite proud of,” Davis said.

Cinematographer and assistant director of the film is Matt Golden of Newville. The cast includes Christopher Boucher of Troy and Caroline Franklin of Owensburo, Ken.

The 2 p.m. screenings will feature 12 films from the Southern Arts Federation’s Short Circuit Film Festival. The screenings will last about three hours.

“Patrons may want to stay the entire three hours or they might want to go get a funnel cake and come back,” Jinright said. “Some of these films will only be five or six minutes, others may be 20 minutes or more. Some of them are emotionally charged and offer viewpoints that we don’t see on cable television. But there’s nothing bad about stretching the content of what you watch.”

At 7:30 p.m., there will be a screening of the award-winning documentary, “Before the Music Dies,” which is about how great music is smothered by massive corporations while, at the same time, offering hope for the future.”

Admission to all screenings is free. Those who enjoy films are invited to attend any and all screenings offered at the first TroyFest Film Festival on April 25.