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Buffalo Dreams Fantastic Film Festival 2014
A diverse selection of films will be shown at the Buffalo Dreams Fantastic Film Festival Friday, November 7th—Thursday, November 13th at the Dipson Eastern Hills Cinema. The mission of Buffalo Dreams is to bring the finest independent films from around the world to Buffalo, and to spotlight the most talented artists from Buffalo’s burgeoning film production community. The festival focuses on science fiction, fantasy, horror, action, thriller and animation, and this year includes comedy for the local categories.
Amongst the film’s on slate this year includes the Buffalo Premiere of The Romans, a crime drama directed by Korey Green and co-written by Green and executive producer Larry Quinn, former owner of the Buffalo Sabres. A contemporary urban interpretation of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar tragedy, The Romans was filmed entirely in Buffalo with Broadway and Hollywood Star Stephen McKinley Henderson (Lincoln, Porgy and Bess), Jon Abrahams (Meet the Parents, Boston Public) and a cast of locals including Byron Brown, Jr., Jon Cesar, Deja Stevens and Tony Littles. A longer version of the film won Best Film and Best Director at the San Diego Black Film Festival in February. The Buffalo Dreams event will be the first time the film is seen by a Buffalo audience in its final form, including music and score by former Rick James guitarist and musical director Kenny Hawkins. A Q & A with key members of the creative team follows the premiere.
“This is a coup for us,” says Buffalo Dreams co-director Gregory Lamberson. “The Romans is a Buffalo film with real production value, and this premiere demonstrates that horror films only comprise a portion of our programming. From our inception we’ve supported local films of all genres, and The Romans is a genuine example of what Buffalo’s film community can do.”
Other films on the slate include a new spaghetti western, 6 Bullets to Hell; the Mexican metaphysical mindbender El Incidente/The Incident, which premiered at the prestigious Sitges Film Festival and sold out four screenings at Fantastic Fest in Austin, Texas; and the sci-fi flavored action film Channeling, which combines reality TV, car chases and cutting edge technology. In all, the festival will screen 19 feature films, two medium length films, 39 shorts, and 12 music videos. In addition, the festival will judge 18 entries in its Original Screenplay Competition. Eighty-six works were selected from almost 300 submissions from around the world.
“We program all genres,” said Lamberson, “and feature several comedies and a local drama, and continue to support locally produced films such as Rhonda Parker’s romantic comedy Friends Don’t Let Friends—Date Friends, Ken Consentino’s horror thriller Within, and 13 year old Hope Muelbauer’s short film Zombie Kids.”
Many films at the festival will be followed by Q&As with the filmmakers. Green, Quinn and several cast members from The Romans will attend their gala event, and Isaac Ezban is traveling to Buffalo from Mexico City to present El Incidente. Canadian filmmaker Brett Kelly will screen his James Bond spoof Spyfall, and Ryan Bellgardt is coming from Oklahoma to show his raucous time travel adventure Army of Frankensteins.
“The notifications from filmmakers who will be attending are already pouring in,” says Lamberson’s partner, Chris Scioli. “Last year, 30 filmmakers came to screen their work. This is what makes a film festival truly special: the opportunity to interact with filmmakers of all stripes, and for the filmmakers to network with each other. A real camaraderie develops that shows the city at its best.”
A complete listing of all selected films follows. Admission is $9 per block, usually consisting of one micro-short or music video, one short and one feature, with a $7 discount available for students, seniors and patrons with military ID. A day pass for four features on Sat (11/8) costs $25, and day passes for Sun—Thu (three features per day) cost $20. An All Festival Pass costs $99. Advance tickets on sale at dipsontheatres.com, and descriptions of all films available at www.buffalodreamsfilmfest.com.
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