Hal Hartley's back

Hal Hartley (pictured) has been named juror for Independent Exposure 2007, Microcinema International's touring short film and video festival, which enters its 12th Season. Says Hartley: "Independent Exposure is one of those cool and vital efforts at curatorship which helps new films get seen by audiences who seek out new forms of entertainment. Microcinema does a great job of pulling together exciting new work and I look forward to being the judge for the 2007 season."

Having lived in New York a great part of his film career, Hartley recently relocated to Berlin in Germany. And those who have been waiting for a new Hartley film for ages, here is the good news: he has just completed shooting his newest feature, Fay Grim , throughout Europe and Southern Asia with Parker Posey, Tom Ryan, Jeff Goldblum, James Urbaniak and others.

Hartley won the Young Filmmakers Award at the 1994 Tokyo International Film Festival for his film Amateur (1994), which was also premiered at the Cannes Director's Fortnight of that year. Retrospectives of his work have been presented at The Rotterdam Festival in 1992 and Gijon, Spain, in 2003. He won the Best Screenplay award at Cannes in 1998 for his film Henry Fool (1997) (see clip here +) and best screenplay at Sundance in 1991 for Trust (1990).

The director was made a Chevalier of arts and letters by the Republic of France in 1997 and taught filmmakingat Harvard University from September 2001 until May 2004. Shortly after that, he was awarded a fellowship by the American Academy in Berlin.

More about Hartley +


Manchester Festival of Fantastic Films - this Friday!

Just a quick post to mention that things have changed with this year's Manchester Festival of Fantastic Films since my last blog on the subject.

First of all, Crispin Glover is the Guest of Honour and the great actor will be showing a 35mm print of his directorial debut WHAT IS IT? Glover is, of course, one of the finest character actors of any generation - having headlined 2003's excellent "Willard" and also featured in the classic "Back to the Future" and "River Edge". Other notable roles include both "Charlie's Angels" films, "Twister" and, of course, his brilliant cameo in David Lynch's masterful "Wild at Heart".

Also appearing at the fest is Lamberto Bava with his British debut. Bava is the director of "Demons", "Demons 2", "Macabre" and "Body Puzzle" - although his finest work is his shocking giallo "A Blade in the Dark", which the fest will also screen. His most recent work includes "Ghost Son" and he has also apprenticed his father - the legendary Mario Bava (on "Shock" aka "Beyond the Door 2") as well as Dario Argento.

Fans attending will also have the chance to meet Ken Foree - who will introduce a 35mm showing of "The Devil's Rejects" and talk about his work in such flicks as "Dawn of the Dead", "The Dentist" and the upcoming "Brotherhood of Blood".

The web site is here:


Have fun!

Calum Waddell

RIP Joe Stefano - writer of PSYCHO

A very sad thing to find out - the legendary writer of "Psycho" and creator of "The Outer Limits" Joe Stefano passed away on Friday the 25th August, aged 84. Stefano was a talented and innovative man and one whom I had the pleasure to meet in person and to interview. I'll be submitting a more substantial piece on the great personality and his work to Kamera. Stay tuned.

Calum Waddell

With thanks to www.fangoria.com

Mike Leigh's Sarajevo honour

British director Mike Leigh has been honoured at the Sarajevo Film Festival with the Honorary Heart of Sarajevo Award for his "outstanding contribution to the art of cinema and the support to the development of the Sarajevo Film Festival."

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Godard's Histoire(s) du cinéma clip

It was with much excitement that I came across Godard's Histoire(s) du cinéma for quite while I was doing one of my archive-vulturing on Youtube.The clip is just over nine minutes long but it's well worth it and gives an idea of the complete piece's form.


Tom Cruise's fall from grace

Like a lot of independent and arthouse film lovers, it's with a strong sense of Schadenfreude (and pride for finally being able to use this word in the correct context!) that I have been watching the tacky exchanges between the Cruise and the Viacom money people. Is this perhaps the end of the era when A List stars can demand half of the budget of a film and leave the rest of the world gaping at the surrealness of their situation? It's time someone put a stop to the Hanks, Roberts and Cruises of the world and rechannel those astronomic salaries to the production of thousands of small-budget masterpieces! Ann Magnuson, of the LA Woman blog and someone who always tells it like it is, has published some interesting thoughts on the whole story. You can read them here +


Jonas Mekas year-long film marathon

Jonas Mekas (pictured), that 83-year-old indefatigable veteran of art cinema activism who founded the New York Anthology Film Archives in 1970, has been hired by Apple’s video iPod to produce 365 short videos, releasing one a day, beginning September 15. Plus, he’ll be curating a downloadable series of classic shorts by experimental filmmakers and videos by the likes of Martin Scorsese, John Waters, Jim Jarmusch, and Abel Ferrara. You can sign up to receive updates about Mekas's Small Apple adventure on Jonasmekas.com +


São Paulo International Short Film Festival

Those of you who can't make it to the 17th São Paulo International Short Film Festival, one of the biggest showcases of short films in the world, fret not. The excellent online exhibition platform, Porta Curtas, has teamed up with the festival to show part of the programme.

Enjoy it...


Kirsten Dunst's makeover

I know that make-up can do wonders for a Hollywood starlet, but this shot of Kirsten Dunst for the September cover of Interview magazine really takes the biscuit. It's a good job they have her name written really big on the page otherwise, who would have guessed? Anyway, she looks great...whoever she is...


Harmony Korine's video for Sonic Youth

Fans of Harmony Korine must be wondering what the Kids writer has been up to. Teaming up once again with his friend Macaulay Culkin, he made this quite sweet video for the band Sonic Youth. You can watch here.


Oliver Stone's World Trade Center

"In his new film, 'World Trade Center,' the director turns the events of 9/11 into an easily digestible myth of American heroism, with an almost happy ending. Huh?"

Anthony Kaufman, Alternet.org

Full story +


Derelict London

The site dedicated to all things derelict in London called, you guessed it, Derelict London, is an internet idea that promises boundless material to work with. It includes a section on former cinema theatre sites. Pass the handkerchief...
(Pic: Walthamstow's Dominion)

Crumbling London film houses +


Screening room: Ciao Manhattan

Filmmaker David Weisman recently discovered over 30 hours of pristine 35mm outtake footage from CIAO! MANHATTAN, the film that has become better known as as a document of the final drugged-out days of famed heiress and Andy Warhol Factory muse Edie Sedgwick (pictured left).

Watch it +


Screening room: Bettie page clips

As the summer takes a break from the heat and converts, temporarily I hope, to an early autumn, warm up with the lovely Bettie Page, whose biopic, the Notorious Bettie Page, is out in the UK this weekend.


Machester Festival of Fantastic Films 2006

Held from Friday September 1st to Sunday September 3rd, this year's Manchester Festival of Fantastic Films is shaping up to be something special. The guests this year include "Dawn of the Dead" legend Ken Foree (who will present a 35mm showing of "The Devil's Rejects", in which he also has a starring turn) and Fassbinder protege Ulli Lommel, best known as the man behind the famed horror flick "The Boogey Man" and the Tony Curtis headlined "Brain Waves." Lommel rarely makes festival appearances but has made an exception in order to present his classic shocker "Tenderness of the Wolves", starring Kurt Raab.

Other movies showing are Tim Sullivan's insane "2001 Maniacs", Tobe Hooper's "Mortuary", the upcoming "Wilderness" and such promising indies as "Lie Still", "33 x Around the Sun", "Venus Drowning" and "Pervert."

For more information check out the fest's web site: http://fantastic-films.com/festival/

Hope to see you there

Calum Waddell

Harvey Weinstein and Michael Moore together again

Via Chron.com: "Harvey Weinstein backed Michael Moore's hit documentary Fahrenheit 9/11. Now, the film mogul is backing Moore's Traverse City Film Festival." Moore announced Friday that Weinstein, co-founder of Miramax Films, and former Republican Gov. William Milliken will serve as honorary co-chairs of a new community group called Friends of the Traverse City Film Festival.

Read full article +