Short Cuts

News and events of interest to local filmmakers.

Like You Don't Have Enough on Your Plate Already Dept.: As in previous years, the approach of SXSW 2001 heralds not only a slew-and-a-half of officially sanctioned films, but also the usual cluster of satellite micro-fests created to fill those tiny niches that the larger fest can't quite satisfy. This has occasionally been a bone of contention with SXSW programmers, but just as Sundance has its Slam-, Lap-, and NoDances, so too does SXSW have its bastard offshoots. As in the past, several of these micro-events are slated to coincide with the main body of SXSW. First there's the third annual Zombiedance Film Festival, Saturday, March 10, 7-11pm at the Velveeta Room (Sixth and Red River), which focuses on the perennially overlooked role of the carnivorous undead in modern cinema. (You doubt this? How many other film fests can you name that fly the logo "Come for the zombies, stay for the comedy?") Fest director Nathan McGinty promises plenty of flesh-eating mayhem and yuks. More info is available by hitting up their Web presence at www.flojo.com/zombiedance. The Conduit Digital Film and Gaming Festival isn't happening this year due to "an overwhelming psycho workload" from previous head honchos Ben Davis and the usual gang of geniuses. However, Rob Campanell's Blastro (www.blastro.com) is sponsoring the Soul Circuit party at Texture (505 Neches), Monday, March 12, 9:30pm-3am, which will feature screenings of new work from former Austinite Tara Veneruso, animaniac Jim Lujan (Stoner Girl), new Blastro signee and prankster Will Keenan, and a gaggle of notable DJs including SXSW showcaser Merrick Brown, DJ Meow, and formerly redefined roller-cum-junglista extraordinaire DJ Firewheel. Check out the Blastro site for more info. Lastly and very much least, mock-festival East by Southeast, sent us a so-vague-it's-asinine (yet clever!) press release with a statement from festival "Director" Duncan Slaptovitch (haw!) who opines the state of film festival season in town and boldly proclaims "We're here to stay!" Of course, since the contact number listed is actually that of the Austin Film Festival and the snail-mail addy is an incorrect bastardization of SXSW's, the whole shebang -- director's cut of The Other Sister and all -- is apparently a prank. Oh, you sillies! They do have a Web site, though: www.geocities.com/eastbysoutheast. In other local festival news, the Austin Film Festival announced this week that they've nabbed Joe Eszterhas for their October festival… In non-SXSW-related news (what?), the Cinemaker Co-op and Rude Mechanicals are sponsoring another of their ongoing avant-garde film screenings at the Off Center (2211-A Hildalgo), Monday, March 5, at 8 and 9:30pm. This time out they're screening a Fluxus Films roundup featuring works by Yoko Ono, John Cale, and others, and James Broughton's "Hermes Bird." General admission is $5/$2.50 for Cinemaker members, tix at the door. More info is available at www.rudemechs.com… Cinemaker Co-op is also holding its third annual MAFIA ("Make a Film in a Weekend") event, Friday-Sunday, March 2-4. Sign-up is at the Co-op offices (1705 Guadalupe, Suite 201) and is open to anyone with enough chutzpah to, you know, make a film in a weekend. That's Super-8 filmmaking, of course, in-camera edits and all that. The resultant films will be screened Monday and Tuesday, March 19-20, at the Hideout (617 Congress). Entry is free to Co-op members, $5 for everyone else. All other necessary info is available by calling Cinemaker at 236-8877… Finally, fans of Sixties soul rebels Students for a Democratic Society should check out the Friday and Saturday, 7pm premiere screenings of Helen Garvy's new documentary on the Movement (Rebels With a Cause, reviewed in Screens) at the Landmark's Dobie Theatre. Garvy, along with longtime Austin activists Jeff Nightbyrd, Alice Embree, and Robert Pardun, will be in attendance, fielding questions post-screening and generally reminding us all what real passion can accomplish.

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KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Zombiedance Film Festival, Blastro Soul Circuit, East by Southeast, Joe Eszterhas, Austin Film Festival, Cinemaker Co-op MAFIA, Rude Mechanicals, Fluxus Films, Helen Garvy, Jeff Nightbyrd, Alice Embree, Robert Pardun

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