Incentives, the end of Sinus, Screen Door, and more
Expect the Texas Motion Picture Alliance to push for the Legislature to finally put some bucks behind a film-incentives bill approved in 2005 without a funding source. That's the word from Hector Garcia, president of the group formed this past year to provide one statewide voice for the film industry. Last session's bill set a one-time incentive amount of $20 million. No word on how or if that amount, seen by many as too minuscule to make a difference, would be modified. (At press time, Gov. Rick Perry had yet to reveal what plan his office would push). TXMPA members have been meeting with key people at the Capitol for the past six months to persuade them of the need to compete with our neighbors in Louisiana and New Mexico as well as a growing number of other states Garcia says, and saw to it that many legislators toured the sets of Friday Night Lights in Austin and Prison Break in the Metroplex. "I feel like the message is being heard by legislators and other key staff," Garcia says. He urges industry pros to sign up at www.txmpa.org.
Film incentives battle plan
Folks like Rob Zombie have made fake grind house trailers for Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino's joint project of the same name. Now, you can join in with a no-more-than-two-minute trailer in a contest to be judged by Rodriguez himself. The deadline is Feb. 12, with the winners screened March 11 during the South by Southwest Film Festival. Send yours to SXSW Grindhouse Trailers, PO Box 4999, Austin, TX 78765. There is no entry fee, but your shortie must have been shot in the last year.
Two fests, two cool events
Meanwhile, Anne Rapp's gothic comedy Double Wide was close to going into production last year, and rumors have it finding new life in 2007. For now, the Austin Film Festival is sponsoring a reading of the script on Jan. 28, 7pm, at the Cap City Comedy Club. The reading will include the talents of Johnny Hardwick (King of the Hill), Dana Wheeler-Nicholson (Fletch), Kit Gwin (No Country for Old Men), KLBJ-FM morning host Dale Dudley, and Ray Benson of the band Asleep at the Wheel.
This past Saturday was the end for our Alamo Drafthouse-based friends at the Sinus Show, the bad-film chucklefest formerly known as Mr. Sinus Theater and fashioned after Mystery Science Theater 3000. The breakup apparently comes after some "personal issues" between the boys, but suffice it to say their six-year run is over. "We've loved being a part of the Alamo and a part of Austin," Jerm Pollet, John Erler, and Owen Egerton say in a written release. "We understand there's plenty of questions, but for now we'd rather simply say thanks for all the people who came and laughed with us." Erler and sometimes Sinus guy Joe Parsons will continue the tradition at the Alamo in February with the new Master Pancake Theater. And Egerton's book of short stories, How Best to Avoid Dying, is coming out in a few months. Meanwhile, Alamo founders Tim and Karrie League note that a poster for the theatre pops up as a prop on Veronica Mars, the series created by former Austinite Rob Thomas.
Goodbye, 'Sinus'; hello, 'Mars'
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