Sunday, September 9, 2012

Silver Screen Night #1: Trocadero (Phila, PA)

August 26th, 2012, we had a filmmaker's dream come true with the opportunity to screen Infinite and Guests of a Nation (see pictures from the "making of" Guests here and here) to an audience of over 200 at the historical Trocadero theater in Philadelphia, PA. 

 Our awesome cast of gentlemen (minus Nick Groch) from Guests of a Nation @ the Troc.
L-R: Shawn Feehly, Todd Lawson, Andy Breving, Mark Sullivan, Conor Fallon, Jon Mulhearn.

Both Infinite and Guests were just completed in mid-August, so to have a screening this soon was such a privilege.  Our two films were shown alongside a number of local filmmakers. My particular favorites were the silent film That Voodoo You Do by Andrew Bennett, and the well-acted and creatively woven Welcome Home by Danny Donnelly.

A majority of the cast and crew from our films sat together in the balcony and had ourselves a jolly good time as we waited for our films to appear on the silver screen.  Adding to the anticipation, only the director and editor had seen the finished films, making it a first viewing for us as well as the audience.   To say we were excited is an understatement.

When the films did play, the reception by the audience was amazing.  You could have heard a pin drop at some moments while Guests was playing.  The clapping and cheering (much of it instigated by our balcony section) went on for a long time as the credits rolled for both Infinite and Guests.

Comments after the screening from our cast were glowing, which added another smile to many of our faces.  A happy cast is worth its weight in gold.  We also received the following affirming reviews the next day:

"Guests of a Nation is a gut-wrenching and thought provoking journey into 1920s Ireland. Containing brilliant acting by the entire cast and phenomenal direction by Speers, Guests of a Nation stands out as a true masterpiece." - Dave Traverso
"Guests of a Nation blew me away. Very impressed." - Mark DeVito
"Movies take you into another world, away from yours for a period of time. Guests Of A Nation, Welcome Home, etc ...each film I viewed had its own unique vision, ultimately taking me away from my everyday world and to the edge of my seat. Great camera work, actors and stories..."
- Theresa Clark
"With remarkable special effects and a mind-blowing premise, Infinite far exceeds the traditional student film and ventures into the realm of epic fantasies." - Dave Traverso

Wootness.  ;)

Borrowing my Dad's saying, I was "pleased as punch" at the outcome of the finished films.  It is interesting to especially compare Guests to our first humble film, Divided, which ironically is also a historical fiction film.  Over the years since our crew of five people on Divided, we have grown with each production as we undertook new challenges and relied on new crew members, artists, and actors to help us grow in the craft.  Many of our actors & crew have ultimately become friends, and I am so proud of how far everyone has come in their individual area of expertise, and how much I love working with the circle of people we have come to know and trust.  Seriously, I found the first day of our production for Guests felt much like a family reunion, and that's not something you'll find very often in the film industry.  It is a treasure not to be taken for granted if you work with a crew like that. 

I look forward to seeing what the future holds for all of us.  Onward to a few more screenings coming down the line, and then come Spring 2013, hopefully playing in some film festivals!  Stay tuned!

Recent Press:
The Morning Call: Army Lifted Aspiring Director Daniel Speers of Chester Co. (5.17.12)
Flying Kite: Iraq War Vet's PA-Made Film A Reflection of Time Served (8.17.12)
Keystone Edge "" (8.23.12)
City Paper: Reel Time (8.24.12)

Movie Critic Dave: Recap: A Night of Short Films at the Troc (8.27.12)

Anyone wondering why I titled this "Silver Screen Night #1"?  Well, undoubtedly one would presume it's because it's the first of many.  You would be correct, because......

Tonight is our 2nd showing at the Reading R/C Theater!  Post to follow!  :-D

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