Monday, July 10, 2006

AMERICAN MESSIAH at the Capitol City Microcinema

I’ve been pretty lousy at blogging of late. I was waiting for news to report, but there simply hasn’t been any. It seems THE PROPER CARE & FEEDING… won Best Feature at Film Expo Texas, but I wasn’t there to see this for sure and haven’t been able to get the organizers on the phone for full confirmation.

I attended a screening and Q&A of the film at Sujewa Ekanayake’s Capitol City Microcinema, a cool little venue in Kensington, MD. Sujewa, an indie filmmaker and indie film cheerleader (and blogger) showed AMERICAN MESSIAH, and is a very gracious host.

I was actually on vacation in the Virginia Beach area (where I lived for 11 years), visiting friends and generally re-connecting with people, and Sujewa graciously organized the screening for when I was going to be on the east coast.

So I drove up to the beltway area, a three hour jaunt (in a rental car, as the family vehicle had some trouble on the trip out from Texas), and met up with Sujewa for some Chinese food (thanks, Suj, for dinner).

The Capitol City Microcinema is a screening series that uses the Kensington Row Bookshop. They basically shut down the store, cover the windows, put up some chairs and a screen, and project the movie. As a booklover myself, it seemed like the perfect marriage of my own interests and sensibilities.

Taking a cue from David Lowery’s experience, I didn’t sit and watch the whole movie, but rather browsed some shelves in the back of the store while I listened to the movie unfold. It was a pleasant experience, and so much less pressure than watching it myself with the audience. I got to hear their chuckles and laughs (and thank goodness for a young lady named Amanda, who laughed so much that it made me feel as though I’d made the movie just for her!).

After the movie, I chatted with Tom and Ed, two screenwriters from the DC area, who I know from a screenwriting email list. Great guys who I’d never met in person. All in all, the trip was a great experience. The only thing that would have made it better is if I could have stayed longer. Since my poor wife was stuck in a small-ish hotel room with all three kids, I didn’t feel it was fair to take up Sujewa on his offer to crash at his place for the night. So at almost 11pm, I started the drive back to Va Beach. Thank goodness for my iPod. Helped me get through those three hours.

At about 2am, I pulled into the hotel and settled into bed, having enjoyed the opportunity to show my film to an appreciative audience of film lovers.


Blogger The Sujewa said...

It was great having you visit K-town Chris, & the people who were at the show seemed to enjoy it (a couple of people I talked to later on - next day - said they liked the movie a lot). Amanda definitely liked the movie a lot, you should interview her for the extended DVD version: an interview w/ Messiah's biggest fan in Kensington, MD :) Alright, enjoy the rest of your vacation, talk to you soon.

- Sujewa

7/10/2006 4:49 PM  
Blogger Jacky Treehorn said...

Hi Chris,

Sounds like a great time and one that other indie filmmakers will enjoy.

What are you writing these days?


7/10/2006 5:58 PM  
Blogger Chris Hansen said...

Suj -- glad to hear people liked it. I was pleased with the response.

Jacky, I'm working on a semi-experimental drama about three strangers whose deaths are imminent, and how those three stories intertwine. I'm almost done with it, and pretty pleased with how it's going. If I can pull some money together, I might do it as my next HD project.

7/10/2006 6:08 PM  
Blogger David Lowery said...

I think the 90 minutes spent browsing that bookstore during the film may have made our Kensington screening one of the more memorable ones (at least contextually)....old bookstores like that are just magical.

7/10/2006 11:52 PM  
Blogger Chris Hansen said...

exactly why i liked it, david -- it was unique. i could enjoy the aural experience of the film (and the audience's reaction), while also looking at all the great stuff in the shop.

7/11/2006 7:25 AM  
Blogger pooks said...

Sounds like a fabulous experience. I've met Ed, but not Tom. Darn! Well, one of these days....

7/12/2006 7:12 PM  
Blogger Chris Hansen said...

ha -- i've met someone from POV that you haven't met! I'm shocked (since Tom and Ed are two of only three people from POV I've ever met in person)...

7/12/2006 7:18 PM  
Blogger pooks said...

Who is the third? We need a tie-breaker!

7/13/2006 2:37 PM  
Blogger Chris Hansen said...

LOL - it's Brian Elliott, who mostly lurks, but who also works at Baylor -- I met him when I interviewed for the position here. And, of course, we've worked together for two years and he produced my film.

7/13/2006 3:01 PM  

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