Summary: Saturday was an exciting day of events, including a feature movie premiere starring Patrick Wilson, and the Sunscreen Film awards ceremony. It was my first chance to meet the amazing Leo Partible, and be suprised by the Wilson brothers performing Van Halen tunes on stage.
1) Producers Panel: Film and Comics:
Leo Partible, Dean Batali, and Ralph Winters discussed how comics and graphic novels have become a big source of Hollywood films. If it’s a film has comic book roots, Leo knows about it. He’s an encyclopedia on the subject, and a screenwriter and director himself. (His brother Van created the Johnny Bravo show as well) Ralph had some interesting stories to tell about the challenges of turning X-men and Fantastic Four into film. Dean shared how blessed he feels pulling into the studio lot, and remembered how it felt like a dream when he started his career and was standing on Gilligan’s Island after seeing the show growing up.
2) Actors Panel Q & A: The actors panel was awesome. The actors are in the photo below, left to right: Solomon Trimble, Patrick Wilson, Ayanna Berkshire, Alexa Vega, and Ethan Suplee. Alexa talked about how difficult it can be working on complete green screen, as she had to do for Spy Kids movies. Patrick stressed that actors shouldn’t try to play the part ‘big or small’ depending on whether it is a stage or film, but should try to connect with the others in the scene and focus on what the situation is. Ayanna told an incredible story of how crazy the auditioning process can be, and how flexible an actor must be to do well in them.
3) Barry Munday premiere and other great films: The theater was packed to view the premiere of Patrick Wilson’s new film. It was very funny, and there were many laugh out loud moments throughout it. After the film, Patrick answered questions about the making of the film. He said he likes stories with a big character arc, and in this one Barry goes from being a real doofus to handling his responsibilities as a man. The cast is good, including Billy Dee Williams, Cybil Shepard, Malcolm McDowell, and Chloe Sevigny. I don’t know how we managed it with the full day, but I was also able to check out 3 award winning films during the day, including the beautifully animated Sebastian’s Voodoo, touching Jesusito de me Vida, and quality gangster film Charlie Valentine. All of those have won multiple awards around the nation/world, and you can see their trailers by clicking on the links.
4) Sunscreen Awards Ceremony: Everyone was dressed up sharp for the awards ceremony, and gave a big applause when John Travolta came out to present the award for Best Florida Film. I mentioned three of the awards already, but was pleased to find out Saturday that the best documentary went to a gentleman I had talked to in the halls. He spent two years in India, living with a man who had lost his legs, his friends, his way of life, but found hope and strength through the love of his wife. The awards didn’t take too long, and then the party started. I was surprised when the stage was cleared and instruments brought in, and the theater started rocking to the sounds of Van Halen. All three Wilson brothers played in the band, including actors Patrick and Paul Wilson, and their brother Mark who is a top newscaster for the local Fox tv station. I’m amazed they can have such successful careers in different parts of the country, and still deliver a tight set of rock music together. It was a fun night.