The American Film Institute has invited 13-18-year-olds to submit entries for their ScreenNation website, which will:
- Build an online community of empowered 7â€“12th grade student filmmakers who give voice to their creativity while sharing ideas and feedback.
- Provide a focused online portal for millions of students using video in creative and educational ways, as well as thousands of schools, and other organizations which support these activities.
- Inspire and support students with instruction, challenges and tips from top movie professionals;
- Provide avenues of recognition for quality work;
- Become the definitive site for young people who create movies in the classroom and beyond;
- Provide educators with a safer online video posting and sharing site that integrates well with the increasing use of video in the classroom and related educational endeavors;
- Provide a tasteful, exciting media site for a select group of sponsors who wish to support the increased use of quality production by young people.
Submissions for AFI ScreenNation’s 1st Challenge Hometown Claim to Fame are being accepted now thru June 30th, with the winner announced July 15th.
The winning video entry will receive a Sony DCR-SR45 ~ HDD Handycam Camcorder w/ 30 GB Hard Disk Drive and Tripod.
Oscar-winner Helen Hunt returns to the screen in the upcoming “Then She Found Me,” adapted from the book by Elinor Lipman. Hunt not only stars — she co-wrote and directed the film, which is about a teacher who tries to cope with the immature husband who abandons her (Matthew Broderick), the sensitive single father of one of her students who cares about her (Colin Firth), the sudden appearance of her biological mother (Bette Midler) after the death of her adoptive parents, and overpowering desire to have a baby.
Hunt’s character, April, is an observant Jew, like her adoptive parents. Her biological mother, Bernice, is not observant in any religion. At the doctor’s office, about to undergo artificial insemination, Bernice suggests that April pray. April refuses. And then, almost unheard of in a Hollywood film (and not in the book, either), the two of them have a private discussion of the meaning and importance of prayer. Do we pray when we feel closest to and most trusting of God or when we feel most lost and bereft? One reason April cannot bring herself to pray at this moment is that it will require her to think about just how much it means to her and to think about the role the connection that God plays in her life. She does not want to think about either. She does not want to give up the notion that this thing she is doing is human — and therefore controllable, not divine. We see for the first time how sensitive Bernice can be and how much she cares about April, how well she understands how much April needs to be more honest with herself about what is going on.
April does pray. But I wonder if the prayer she says is the one a real-life observant Jew would say in those circumstances. I guessed she would say Mishaberach, a prayer of healing, or Shehekianu, a prayer of gratitude and being in the moment. Instead, she says the oldest and holiest of prayers, the Shema. Perhaps the screenwriters use that prayer because it is the most widely recognized. Or perhaps, in her moment of greatest hope and anguish, April would reach back to the first prayer she learned, the one that reminds us that God is One.
In 1935, the debate team from a tiny all-black college took on the top white team in the country and they won. This is that story, Oprah-fied to be sure (Winfrey’s company produced the film), but powerfully told by director Denzel Washington, who also stars as the team’s coach, distinguished poet Melvin B. Tolson.
What force on earth is strong enough to unite an upper middle class suburban housewife, a poor African-American single mother and a young, spaced-out rock n’ roll fan living in a trailer? Why, the opportunity to steal from the government, of course.
“Mad Money” is a conventional heist comedy about a plot to steal money from the Bureau of Printing and Engraving. Diane Keaton, Queen Latifah and Katie Holmes star as low-level employees of the Bureau who come up with a complicated plan to get around the elaborate security procedures. Working together beneath the notice of government officials, the three women combine their roles to walk off with bags of used money that has been returned to the Bureau to be destroyed. Each of them has a different justification for their decision to steal — a special need or a past injustice that the money will cure.
Happy Birthday US Constitution! [youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FzAJyK0ovo8[/youtube]
It was on September 17, 1789 that the US Constitution was approved. The Bill of Rights was not added until later, but let's celebrate that, too. How many can you name? This will help you remember them.
Trailer: Days and Nights With Katie Holmes and Allison Janney Inspired by Chekhov's "The Seagull," this is the story of a weekend at a country house that includes a famous actress, her discontented son, and people who love the wrong people and are angry at each other -- sometimes at the same time.
Trailer: Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence in "Serena" Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence re-team in "Serena," which looks very intriguing but does not yet have a US release date. Stay tuned.
[iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/-wFHiZHZVaU?rel=0" frameborder="0"]
Contest: Win a DVD of Ella the Elephant [iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/videoseries?list=PL7Eup7JXScZz_ZAyJKN2XMIdAVp-n3iCW" frameborder="0"]
Join Ella the Elephant and her kindhearted friends in this all-new animated series from Disney Junior featuring 8 charming episodes. Elephant Island is home to many
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