Film News

Beth Sepko brings home an Emmy, plus things are about to get horrific here

Of Emmys, 'Barbarella,' Terrence Malick, and Pauly Walnuts

Terrence Malick directing his next film right here in Austin in the spring? My sources say the top-secret project based on Malick's script is a go, but with Malick nothing is certain. Meanwhile, major congrats to Beth Sepko, who can now call herself an Emmy-winning casting director for handling Austin casting for NBC's Friday Night Lights. In other words, she got major props for working hard to get a whole lot of Texas actors on the small screen week after week. She had a list of 215 actors cast for the show's first season, and a scant 18 of those came through Los Angeles. The rest are primarily actors who have been sweating away hereabout for years. Meanwhile in segue town, there are casting rumors afoot for the lead in Robert Rodriguez's Barbarella remake, which is expected to lens here in November. Topping the rumor list are Kate Beckinsale and Rose McGowan. Also in town shooting independent comedy The Sno Cone Stand Inc. this week are Morgan Fairchild and The Sopranos' Tony Sirico.

Bloody festivals everywhere!

Just when you thought Fantastic Fest had all of your cult-movie needs covered, now comes word that Fangoria magazine will have its own soiree in town soon.

Fantastic Fest – the eight-day festival of the best new sci-fi, horror, fantasy, and genre films – is in progress through Sept. 27 at the Alamo Drafthouse South with all sorts of secret guests like Patton Oswalt (here for showings of Sex and Death 101) and surprise screenings. See "Seven Days in Heaven and Hell" for the Chronicle's preview.

Next up is the Fangoria Weekend of Horrors, Jan. 18-20 at the Renaissance Austin Hotel, with local heroes like director Robert Rodriguez, stuntman extraordinaire Gary Kent, and Ain't It Cool News guru Harry Knowles, plus such luminaries as Supernatural star Jared Padalecki, House of the Dead director Uwe Boll, scream girl Angela Bettis, and special-effects legend Tom Savini. Oh, and there's a reunion of Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood.

And the rest ...

Vanguard International Cinema will distribute Ken Johnson's Austin-shot Spanish/English film, El Abandonado!, which premiered at the 2006 Cine las Americas International Film Festival... Occasional Chronicle contributor Jesse Sublett wrote six of the 13 episodes of the History Channel's Boneyard, which airs Thursdays at 8pm... Joe "King" Carrasco headlines a benefit concert and silent auction for the feature film Z: A Zombie Musical at Trophy's Bar & Grill on Sunday from 5:30 to 10pm. Silent-auction items include acting classes, workshops, autographed movie posters, and a belly-dancing certificate... Moonlighting's Glenn Gordon Caron will receive the Outstanding Television Writer Award at the Austin Film Festival in October... Film journalist extraordinaire Merle Bertrand is the new host of The Director's Cut on The weekly one-hour Internet show about the movie world streams live at 10am Saturday mornings, but shows are also available any time on the site... NBC's Friday Night Lights has been good to Austin shooters, says Todd McMullen, director of photography for the show's second season. That's because it fields three camera crews at once, including Austin's top lens artists. As he says, "Ian Ellis, Todd Campbell, and Shane Kelly frame it up, while Robert Rendon, Rob McGrath, Zach Nasits, Frank Parrish, Amanda Bruce, Adam Schwartz, Trevor Nelson, and Ryan Abrams keep it all in focus"... Austin-made "Chickenfüt" recently screened at the L.A. Shorts Fest. Written and directed by UT cinematography professor Harrison Witt and produced by Jourdan Henderson, it stars Jeffery Mills and Cyndi Williams.

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Texas film news, Terrence Malick, Beth Sepko, Barbarella, The Sno Cone Stand Inc., Fantastic Fest, Fangoria Weekend of Horrors, El Abandonado!

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