Showing posts from November, 2015

Savannah-area Moon River Studios Project Scaled Down

The studio name is inspired by the famed “ Breakfast at Tiffany’s” song by Savannah musician Johnny Mercer. Imagine this — Moon River Studios : the country’s largest, full-service production complex built in coastal Effingham County, Georgia. Reminiscent of the dominant production companies of Hollywood’s Golden Age, the mega-studio will be equipped with state of the art facilities built on a whopping 1,560 acres of land. It is quite a valiant dream, but it may remain just a dream. Recent reports have revealed that Moon River Studios (parent company FONU2) has failed to meet the mandatory milestones stated in its original agreement with Effingham County’s Industrial Development Authority (IDA). This has resulted in a revised agreement for the studio to scale back to Phase One of its master plan . Perhaps the largest change listed in the agreement is the downsizing of the complex from 1,560 acres down to 51 acres. Despite the reduced space, Jake Shapiro, Board Chairman of FONU2, claims

"Room" Review (****½)

Jacob Tremblay and Brie Larson shine in “Room.” “Room” opens with Ma (played by Brie Larson, “Short Term 12,” ) and Jack (Jacob Tremblay) in the midst of their morning routine. The shots are close and color-muted. The frame is both sharp and unfocused, creating this disorienting, claustrophobic sensation within the viewer. From the very beginning we know that something is wrong, a feeling that I attribute entirely to Stephen Rennick’s score and Danny Cohen’s cinematography. Ma and Jack stretch; Jack runs back and forth; he takes his vitamins; they eat breakfast. We see bits of the room: a small bed, a bathtub, a toilet, a wardrobe. This day, however, is particularly special because it’s Jack’s fifth birthday. Ma bakes him a cake (which is a very big deal) and Jack throws a tantrum because there aren’t any birthday candles like in TV. This is where Jack first mentions Old Nick, the shadowy figure who brings them food and vitamins and enters through Door. Jack implores why Old Nick can’

Atlanta Launches Nation's First-Ever Entertainment Training Program

Atlanta will be the first American city to train workers specifically for the film industry.  You’ve spotted filming signs scattered around town . You’ve driven past filming locations decked out with camera equipment and crew. Heck, you may’ve  been lucky enough to have spotted  a Hollywood star or two in a local Atlanta institution . But have you ever wondered what it’s like to work on one of the production sets in the area? To contribute first-hand in the creation of movie magic? Now, you can.   Atlanta Mayor  Kasim Reed and the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees ( IATSE Local 479 ) recently announced plans to launch the City of Atlanta Entertainment Training Program  designed specifically to train below-the-line workers for Georgia’s entertainment industry. Currently in the pilot stage, the Entertainment Training Program (ETP) will provide instruction and direct workforce access for Georgia residents to support our thriving #GAfilm industry. The program will buil

“Miss You Already” Review (***)

Drew Barrymore and Toni Collette star in “Miss You Already.” At first glance, or, more accurately, first trailer, “Miss You Already” had me hooked. I was so eager to watch this weepie, mumblecore-esque kind of movie. I wanted to watch a film that orbited solely around the friendship between two women, to watch a film where hurt and cancer and love and death weren’t sensationalized. If you were looking for something similar to what I described above, I’m sorry to say, I don’t think that “Miss You Already” is your movie. Though it’s not what I expected, nor what I wanted, it’s hard not to admire director Catherine Hardwicke’s (“Twilight,” “Plush”) lack of fear. She’s entirely unafraid of the uncertainty, sentimentality, and emotional weight of a movie as heavy as the Titanic. Milly (Toni Collette) is a high-power PR executive with a rock star husband, two adorable, over-acting children, and a loud, self-aggrandizing sense of vanity who is diagnosed with breast cancer at an unforgivingly