Recovering from the Ann Arbor Film Festival

Hello all,

My voice is wrecked, I’m feeling a bit green about the gills, and I just slept for over 12 hours solid.  That’s what it means to return from the Ann Arbor Film Festival.

For those of you who don’t know, my new short, “A Little Night Fright” just had its World Premiere at the 45th Ann Arbor Film Festival.  I decided that given the occasion, I should be present for the screening, and headed to the Midwest for the weekend.

I spent a couple of days soaking up the local scene, hanging out with other filmmakers and festival staff (all terrific) and catching as many films as possible.  Ann Arbor is primarily an experimental film festival, and I did start to wonder how my film got in as I’m most definitely on the narrative end of things.

Finally, my screening approached.  Scheduled on Saturday at 3, the turnout was tremendous.  I had thought I was handling the stress of screening just fine, but by about 1pm that day I was pacing back and forth and having trouble concentrating on some of the other screenings.  The Makers Mark graciously provided in the Green Room did wonders for my nerves.

Naturally, waiting for the film to screen is a nerve-wracking experience. I only saw my final print (yes, it was shot and completed on 35mm) two days before I got on the plane to Michigan, and I’m thinking of all the terrible things that could go wrong.

1. There is no sound.

2. The aspect ration is off.

3. The film snaps midway through.

4. They screen it backwards.

And on and on and on.

All my fears were for naught, as within moments of the film starting, so did the laughter.

I was expecting some laughter, but the response was above and beyond what I could have anticipated.  Things I had no idea were funny were making people laugh heartily.  Who knew?

What can I say, but that overall the screening was extremely rewarding.  There’s nothing quite like having a receptive audience for your work.  It makes everything else worth it.  And Ann Arbor has an avid film-going audience that is among the best I’ve encountered.  Kudos to them and everyone at the festival for putting on a great show.

That’s it for now.  Next up, Nashville.

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