Short Cuts

Upcoming events and workshops of interest to the Austin film community.

It's that time of year and, thanks to the wonder of the Internet, it's apparently still not too late to get out those last minute gimme-lists. A case in point is the Cinemaker Co-op, which has cunningly circulated an e-mail humbly requesting a few meager donations in the service of small-gauge creativity. Among the things they could use are Super- and regular-8 cameras, movie lights, tripods, PCs, current film resource books, and a "small microwave," presumably for the gobs of popcorn to go with their voluminous filmic output. Humbugs will be pleased to note that donations are tax deductible. The particulars are available by calling 236-8877 or e-mailing the Co-op at On a related note, the soundtrack to Bob Ray's locally lensed Rock Opera is now readily available in Austin-area music and paraphernalia outlets. With tracks from Tallboy, Nashville Pussy, El Flaco, and PigPoke (among others), this is the perfect stocking stuffer for those of you who've already, um, ingested all the other pre-holiday cheer you'd been meaning to hang onto for that special someone... Fresh from their mano a mano with Martin Scorsese and assorted lesser beings at the Directors Guild of America awards ceremony the other week, the Austin Film Society has netted a prestigious NEA grant for the third year running. The $35,000 will aid and abet the exhibition of "rarely seen films, free of charge, to the Austin public from Sept. 1, 2000 through Aug. 31 2001"... Producers and those being sued by producers should check out the Film Alliance of Austin's next meeting, Tue., Jan. 11, at the Filling Station (801 Barton Springs). Entertainment attorney Michael Saleman will be the featured speaker, and though he's slated to discuss fundraising for indie films, he'll probably also have time to field queries from those with more pressing litigious matters... It wouldn't be much of a column without checking out what's up at SXSW. That said, the multimedia arm of everyone's favorite brouhaha has just scored software giant Macromedia's chairman and CEO Rob Burgess and senior VP Kevin Lynch as special co-keynote speakers on Sun., Mar. 12... The Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, the AFS, and The New Yorker scribe-cum-public-access maven Charlie Sotelo wrap up their oddly underattended Sam Peckinpah retrospective today (Thu., Dec. 16) with the little-seen (on the big screen, anyway) WWII epic Cross of Iron. Sotelo (and Chronicle Screens editor Marjorie Baumgarten) should be just back from New York, where he's spent the past week comparing desert-island lists with critic's critic Pauline Kael, so feel free to drop by and glare at him with those green eyes of yours. The AFS' Shohei Imamura series concludes on Tue., Dec. 21 with The Ballad of Narayama, 7pm, Texas Union Theatre... Finally, the news for which we've all been waiting: Harry Knowles' 24-hour Butt-Numb-A-Thon, held last weekend at the Alamo, was, by all accounts a rousing success, bringing in over $5,000 for the Big Brothers/Sisters Saturday Morning Film Club. Austin scribe/bon vivant Stephen Romano praised Pitch Black star Vin Diesel's gravelly elocution in pronouncing "Superman" (à la The Iron Giant), the Taser-wielding staff ("Get up, you!"), and "the beer company rep who promised a case to whoever could prove they had an outstanding warrant, but don't quote me on that." Too late man, too late.

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Cinemaker Co-op, Austin Film Society, Directors Guild of America, SXSWInteractive, Macromedia, Film Alliance of Austin, Rock Opera, Pauline Kael, Charlie Sotelo, The Show With No Name, Sam Peckinpah, Marjorie Baumgarten, Shohei Imamura, Harry Knowles, But

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