Jette Kernion's blog

Tix on Sale for Rodriguez's 'Shorts' Premiere at Paramount

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R. Rodriguez at Troublemaker, by Jette KernionThe splashy movie premieres that the Paramount sometimes hosts are rarely for family films. However, you now have an opportunity to take your children to a kid-friendly gala premiere, when Robert Rodriguez's upcoming film Shorts gets the red-carpet treatment.

Tickets just went on sale this morning (10 am) for the Sunday, August 16 regional premiere of Shorts at the Paramount. Tickets are $30 plus service charges, and include not only the movie but a children's carnival nearby on Congress Ave. afterwards. There are also VIP badges you can buy ($125), but I don't know what extra perks they provide apart from better seats. Proceeds from ticket sales benefit a local nonprofit, Thoughtful House Center for Children.

Shorts, written and directed by Rodriguez and produced by Elizabeth Avellan, was shot here in Austin. The PG-rated film is about a mysterious Rainbow Rock that falls from the sky and grants people unlikely wishes. The cast includes Rebel Rodriguez (Robert Rodriguez and Elizabeth Avellan's son), Kat Dennings, Jon Cryer, William H. Macy, Leslie Mann, and James Spader.

Another View of Slackerwood

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Slackerwood, by John Gholson

So not only do I have this cool new illustration to show you this morning, I have a good story about where it came from. John Gholson is a local film geek who wanted to raise some funds so he could go to Fantastic Fest this year. So he came up with a fun way to earn the money: a blog called Taking Requests, where you can pay him $5 to draw anything (within reason) and he posts the requests and resulting illustrations on his site.

I heard about this on Friday and thought, "Ooh, I wonder if he could draw the Slackerwood photo." The photo at the top of this page doesn't quite measure up to the way I wanted it to look in my head. And, you know ... five bucks? You can't beat that. Sure enough, the resulting art is a lot closer to the way I've always envisioned the Slackerwood theme. Thank you, John!

Tim League also heard about John's fundraising project, and not only requested a drawing of his own, but posted the info to the Fantastic Fest blog. Naturally, this increased the requests John's received. He's drawn some cool and bizarre things: a zombie for Megan Hagins, who produced her daughter Emily's zombie film Pathogen; a Patrick Swayze centaur for Austinist film writer Steph Beasley; and my favorite so far, a sketch of H.I. McDunnough from Raising Arizona.

Go check out the Taking Requests site, see John's latest illustrations, and maybe spend $5 on something wild and crazy all your own.

Quick Snaps: Looking Up at the Paramount

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Looking up

I took this photo of the Paramount marquee during the Office Space anniversary screening back in February, and realized I've never shared it here. I don't have any particular news associated with the Paramount or the image above; it's just a photo that I like and hoped other people would, too. Enjoy.

Slackery News Tidbits are Fannntastic

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Fantastic Fest 2009It's Monday morning and time to wake up, smell the coffee, and find out what's going on in Austin film right now. Here's what I've got so far:

  • Fantastic Fest and website HorrorSquad are co-hosting a special screening of the horror thriller The Collector on July 22. Writer/director Marcus Dunstan and co-writer Patrick Melton will be in attendance. Click the link above to find out how to RSVP if you have a Fantastic Fest badge. If you haven't heard of The Collector, the movie toured the fest circuit under the title Midnight Man. [Full disclosure: I write for HorrorSquad's sister site, Cinematical.]
  • Speaking of Fantastic Fest, a preview of the poster and t-shirt art is now available on the Mondo Tees blog for you to admire. "Yes, but when do we find out what's actually playing at Fantastic Fest this year?" The first batch of fest films will be announced on July 13.
  • Decider Austin (the local online Onion site) has a fun interview with Austin Film Festival programming director Kelly Williams called "How not to enter the Austin Film Festival." Don't forget that the deadline for AFF film submissions is this Friday, July 3.

Are You Following Austin Film Twitterers?

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Austin Film on TwitterLast year, I compiled a list of Austin film-related organizations and film geeks who had Twitter accounts, which turned out to be very popular. I realized last week that the old list is out of date; many new people and groups have started using Twitter to share news and chat. A lot of those tweets are about Austin film.

As a result, I've created a page on Slackerwood to keep track of all the Austin film-related Twitter accounts, whether they're individuals who talk about lots of other things too, or news feeds. Check it out. You'll find a permanent link to the page in the left sidebar. If you think of someone I've missed, just let me know and I'll update the page.

Be An Extra, Have a Beer

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Fantastic Fest 2006

Last month, Jenn reported that Simon Rumley, whose film The Living and the Dead won an award at Fantastic Fest 2006 (which he's holding above), would be shooting his next film around Austin: Red, White and Blue.

The production is currently looking for extras to fill the Broken Spoke in a scene that will be shot on Tuesday, July 7. You have to show up in country-and-western clothing and it seems some beer drinking may be involved. For more information, check out the Alamo blog entry written by the film's executive producer, Tim League.

The Austin Chronicle published a story today with more details about Red, White and Blue and Rumley shooting in Austin. We're also planning more news about the production soon -- I heard a rumor that one of the shooting locations is also the home of a Slackerwood contributor (aside to husband: no, not our house, don't worry).

Machete-Hacked Slackery News Tidbits

Danny Trejo, by Jeff Balke on Flickr

Yes, the title is cheesy this morning. But how else was I going to get a Machete reference in there? And I'll use any excuse to post a photo of Danny Trejo, like the one above. It's from the 2007 Grindhouse premiere, but it's still relevant, as you'll see below. There's other news from Austin and surrounding areas as well.

  • While at Cinevegas last week, Danny Trejo told James Wallace from the blog Gordon and the Whale that shooting on Machete, Robert Rodriguez's movie based on a fake trailer in Grindhouse, will start in about five weeks. I wonder if they'll do any location shooting around Austin? [via Cinematical]
  • The latest on the Austin Studios proposed sub-lease to Soundcheck Austin: An open letter to the Austin film community from Richard Linklater that explains the situation clearly and calmly. Check it out.

Upcoming Movie Events at Paramount

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The State and the Paramount

You probably already know about the Paramount's Summer Film Series. Maybe you rushed over there to catch Breakfast at Tiffany's (bleah) or The Awful Truth (woo-hoo). However, you might not be aware -- I wasn't -- that the Paramount also has planned special events around some of the movies they're showing.

For example, Singin' in the Rain and An American in Paris are double-billed at the theater this weekend. Between the two screenings on Saturday, the Paramount will host live "vaudeville-style performances" from Schave and Reilly.

And next Friday, June 26, the theater is hosting a The Big Lebowski-themed downtown scavenger hunt before showing the movie as a double-feature with Fargo. You can buy a ticket through the Paramount website that gets you into the scavenger hunt and both movies, as well as a free soda and popcorn.

Unfortunately, the Paramount website doesn't seem to have a separate section where all the film-related special events are listed. The event info is included with the descriptions for the appropriate films on the website ... or you can sift through the printed/PDF full calendar. To make it easier to find out about these little extras, we'll post an update at the end of this month that lists the special events for July, such as an egg-eating contest before Cool Hand Luke.

[Photo credit: "The State and the Paramount" by Jette Kernion]

Hear John Pierson's 2009 Master Classes on KUT

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Tom Perrotta Master Class, by Austin Kleon on Flickr

Every spring, John Pierson teaches a master class at The University of Texas in which filmmakers, actors, producers, and other film-related professionals chat about the work they've been doing. And in the summer, KUT broadcasts many of the best moments from these classes so we all can enjoy hearing these professionals.

The excerpts will play on KUT's show "The Best of Public Radio" starting on Sunday, June 21 at 11:30 am. The Austin Chronicle film blog, Picture in Picture, has posted a tentative schedule of the shows. You can hear Pierson and his class talk with Harvey Weinstein, Morgan Spurlock, Mike Judge, Ellen Kuras, and local film critics Marjorie Baumgarten and Chris Garcia. I've attended Pierson's classes in the past and the discussions are always lively and interesting.

One of Pierson's classes that isn't making it to KUT this year is his conversation with novelist and screenwriter Tom Perrotta (Little Children). However, Austin Kleon drew one of his cool "mind maps" of the session, which I've included above -- a visually engaging way of taking and sharing notes. Thanks very much to Austin for putting a Creative Commons license on his illustration so I could share it here. And if you want to see a photo of Pierson and his guests in action, here's an entry with photos I took from the class with Matt Stone in 2008.

Quick Snaps: Flashback to Richard Rush at Alamo

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Richard Rush at Alamo

Writing about Weird Wednesday last week, especially Richard Rush's film Psych-Out, made me think about the time Rush was in town for some special screenings of his films at Alamo Drafthouse. This was in August 2006 at the old theater on Colorado. I brought my old camera that night and the photos are terribly grainy, but I still like them. At the time, I started to write about the evening, but never got it done (a placeholder was notoriously in the Slackerwood queue for about two years).

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