Film Flam

NEA awards AFS, festival news, and 'Black Metal' seeks extras

Film Flam

The Austin Film Society's big – and, yes, pricey – plan to expand the Austin Studios campus is now $75,000 closer to fruition after the National Endowment for the Arts awarded the nonprofit one of 80 Our Town grants.

With a mission statement that communities benefit from vibrant arts scenes, the NEA program doled out nearly $5 million in grants. AFS will use its grant money to move forward with the long-planned expansion of Austin Studios when it takes over the nearby decommissioned National Guard Building this fall.

According to a press release, the specific plan is "to involve the community in the design of the 'public face' of Austin Studios, which includes remodeling the NGB into affordable space for production and education; programming and design of a new Exhibition and Visitors Center with a plaza/lobby for events, screening rooms for AFS’s exhibition programs, artists, festivals and community organizations; and plans for signage, landscaping and other campus infrastructure that allow the public to experience Austin Studios (i.e. observing and interacting with working filmmakers and other artists)."

Want to know more about the Austin Studios expansion plan? Richard Whittaker spoke to AFS Executive Director Rebecca Campbell in May, and blueprints of the existing campus and the proposed expansion are viewable here.

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When I was 16 and manning the counter of a mom-and-pop video store in North Carolina, we had a folder with laminated pages featuring the jacket covers of XXX videos not safe for the shelf. I swear one of those sticky covers shared the same name as Duane Graves and Justin Meeks' new film, their followup to 2008's supremely creepy The Wild Man of Navidad. But their Boneboys surely isn't porn – though it might put horror-hounds in heat – and it's headed to Fantasia Fest, Montreal's premier genre festival. With a script by Texas Chain Saw Massacre scribe Kim Henkel, the film is described as "a gut-wrenching, non-stop roller coaster ride through the hellish underbelly of inner-city America."

In other far-flung festival travels, Bob Byington's Somebody Up There Likes Me has been tapped as one of 19 international features playing in competition at Switzerland's Locarno Film Festival. Somebody Up There Likes Me had its world premiere at SXSW 2012 and more recently kicked off the Cinema East summer program. We've also heard second-hand murmurings of a theatrical distribution in the spring, but until Bob returns our email, that tidbit stays filed under "unconfirmed rumor."

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Having successfully crossed a Kickstarter finish line, production starts tomorrow on Kat Candler's new short film "Black Metal." In fact, she's looking for metalhead extras to fill out a concert crowd being shot at the 29th St. Ballroom. Think you've got the requisite metal-mettle? Find out more here – but move fast 'cause the shoot is tomorrow.

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Unconfirmed rumors always welcome here: filmflam@austinchronicle.com.

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KEYWORDS FOR THIS POST

Film Flam, Austin film news, Austin Film Society, Austin Studios, Duane Graves, Justin Meeks, Boneboys, Kim Henkel, Bob Byington, Somebody Up There Likes Me, Black Metal, Kat Candler

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