Short Cuts

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

It came as little surprise when Sam Mendes' American Beauty picked up the Best Director, Motion Picture, and Screenplay (for Alan Ball) awards at the Golden Globe Awards last week. The most unexpected and welcome cinematic surprise of 1999 had, of course, already garnered similar wins and nominations at the Toronto International Film Festival and from the Director's Guild of America, the Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards, the National Board of Review (not to mention a near-sweep here at the Chronicle). If you haven't already seen Mendes' remarkable film, or if you're still wondering what all the hoopla is about, the Arbor Theater will present a screening of the movie accompanied by a lecture by psychotherapist Maria Grace this Sat., Jan. 29, at 1pm. The film will be "prefaced by a talk on the human myth in film, religion, and psychotherapy, and will be used as the blueprint for the struggle of our psyche to reach its longed-for freedom." Here's your chance to stop fretting about those strange dreams you've been having about Kevin Spacey and actually do something about it... Speaking of screenings (and when are we not?), the gang over at Bikes Not Bombs will be having one of their own today, Thu., Jan. 27, 7-9pm, at the Ritz Lounge (upstairs at 320 E. Sixth) to show a video documentary chronicling their travels to deliver bicycles to the refugees in Chiapas, Mexico. A second screening, complete with music from Roots-N-Wisdom, will follow at Ruta Maya Coffee House (218 W. Fourth) on Sun., Jan. 30, 8pm... I don't usually include too many acting classes in "Shortcuts" because, frankly, there's way too many of them, but this one comes highly recommended and bears note: TVI Actors Studio will be holding a "Primetime TV Auditioning Technique Weekend" on Feb. 12-13 here in Austin (exact location to be announced). Casting director Jason Wood, VP of talent and casting for Mandalay Television in L.A., is going to be the man in charge, and he promises plenty of cold-reading hell for those of you out there that think being "Thug #1" on V.I.P. means loitering at craft services until it's time to die gracefully. Space is limited, so call TVI at 800/884-2772x1, or check out their Web site at Screenwriter alert: The Austin Writer's League will present a conference on "The Writer's Journey -- Crafting the Story," Feb. 5-6, at the Embassy Suites Hotel. The keynote speaker, Christopher Vogler, has evaluated over 10,000 (!) screenplays for major studios in addition to working as a story consultant and penning the bestselling The Writer's Journey. Also on hand for the conference will be Tim McCanlies (Dancer, TX Pop. 81, The Iron Giant), TriMark and James Cameron crony R.W. Deutsch, among (many) others. Registration deadline if Feb. 1 and looks likely to sell out. Call the AWL offices at 499-8914 for more info... Finally, it's never too early to win an Academy Award, am I right? With that in mind, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has announced their call for entries for the 27th Annual Student Academy Awards. If you're a member of an accredited college or university and you've completed a film after April 1, 1999, it's time to get that audio mixdown finished, already. The deadline for consideration is April 3, 2000, 5pm sharp. Eyeball their site at for any and all other info.
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american beauty, maria grace, bikes not bombs, tvi actors studio, the austin writer's league, christopher vogler, tim mccanlies, rw deutsch, 27th annual student academy awards

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