The LAIKA Experience – At The Portland Art Museum – “Animating Life: The Art, Science, and Wonder of LAIKA”

Animating Life: The Art, Science, and Wonder of LAIKA” is a “brand new “ exhibit and behind-the-scenes interactive look at LAIKA’s creative process, that promises to take the visitor inside the world of animation. LAIKA’s artistry and technology illustrate how the feature films, “Coraline”, “ParaNorman”, “The Box Trolls” and “Kubo and the Two Strings,” were made. “Through behind-the-scenes photography, video clips and physical artwork from its films, visitors will be immersed in LAIKA’s creative process, exploring the production design, sets, props, puppets, costumes, and world-building that have become the studio’s hallmarks. Their films are a triumph of imagination, ingenuity and craftsmanship and have redefined the limits of modern animation.”

At the Portland Art Museum this fall – October 5th- May 18th.


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RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARCHIVE: The Possessed (Jerry Thorpe, 1977)

This week’s trek into Oregon’s dark and eclectic cinematic woods marks a (literal) transition from “Back to School” to a month of horror themed posts leading up to Halloween. Raider/Contributor Phil Oppenheim is calling this slashy little sub-series “Horregon.” In this installment, we find ourselves with not only a pre-Star Wars (post-American Graffiti) Harrison Ford but also a pre-Stripes (post-Carrie) PJ Soles skulking around a dimly lit (and therefore mostly unidentified) Reed College campus trying to soak up some of the devil’s blood left behind in the boffo box office red wake of The Exorcist.

Reed College has plenty to brag about, including a beautiful campus with stunning buildings designed by A.E. Doyle, rigorous admission standards (mean SAT scores of 1387, 39% acceptance rate), and many notable alumni, including Steve Jobs (its most famous dropout), James Beard, Ry Cooder, Larry Sanger, and trash-culture trailblazer and my own personal hero, Dr. Demento (Barry Hansen).  And while their Religion major currently includes interesting-sounding classes covering Early Imperial China, Ancient Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Hindusim, and Sufism, they might want to consider adding Luciferianism, Women’s (Satanic) Studies, and Practical Exorcism into the mix for the spring semester — at least if the 1977 TV movie The Possessed is to be believed.  Read More »

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New Teaser From TNT – Season 4 Of “The Librarians”

The new season of TNT’s  “The Librarians” will premiere with two episodes on a new night; Wednesday, December 20 at 8:00/7:00c.  Rebecca Romijn, Christian Kane, Lindy Booth and John Harlan Kim star in the series along with Emmy-winner John Larroquette. Noah Wyle (Falling Skies, ER) will be back as “Flynn Carsen” in seven of twelve episodes in this upcoming season.

#OregonMade “The Librarians” is produced by Electric Entertainment, with executive producers Dean Devlin, Marc Roskin and Noah Wyle.

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Master Class: Feature Film Directing with Darin Scott


Learn From Hollywood Director DARIN SCOTT To:
Analyze The Screenplay, Create Compelling Images, Design Your Shot Plans, Choose The Right Cast, Inspire Great Performances, Run An Efficient And Creative Set, Solve Production Problems, Draw The Best From Your Crew, Raise Your Financing, Advance Your Career,

Exclusive Master Class Includes:   

*Access to Q&A sessions with special guest instructor
*2 full days of instruction (November 4-5 from 9am – 6pm)
*Lunch is provided both days  Read More »

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categories Digital, Film and Media Industry, Independent Films, Kickstarter, Movies, Oregon Film, Portland, Television | comments Comments (1)

“Crash Pad” feature film written by PDX screenwriter

Thomas Haden Church and Domhnall Gleeson in a still from “Crash Pad”

The black listed comedy script, “Crash Pad” is the directorial debut for Kevin Tent, the oscar-nominated editor for ‘The Descendants” and “Nebraska”. Executive Produced by Alexander Payne, produced by Bill Horberg (“Milk”, “Cold Mountain”) and stars Domhnall Gleeson, Thomas Haden Church, Christina Applegate and Nina Dobrev. “Crash Pad” will be available on VOD this Tuesday, 9/26 and a limited theater release on 10/27.
Screenwriter, Jeremy Catalino lives in Portland, Oregon with his wife and two children. 
See the Trailer here. 

Kevin Tent, Jeremy Catalino & Bill Horberg at the Boston Film Festival screening of “Crash Pad.”

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RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARCHIVE: Human Growth (Written by Lester Beck, Directed by Sy Wexler, 1947/1962)

We’re headed Back to School again this week and tackling that most interesting and uncomfortable of classroom topics: Sex Ed. Raider/Contributor Phil Oppenheim takes a look at the late 40’s and early 60’s in-classroom, let’s-watch-a-film-on-that approach to this topic from the University of Oregon and it is quite curious (frustrating? enlightening? stereotype-izing?) to see the differences between the two and, even more so, between then and now. On top of that, in a state with such a (forgive us) well developed animation industry, it’s also great to see such early roots for that particular art form even if it is at the expense of poor Aunt Sarah (who might have have a few questions to answer about her hateful niece’s origins).

You can see and experience it all for yourself here:

This is where our story begins…(1962 version).

How did you learn about the birds and the bees?

If you were an American adult before the ‘50s, there’s a good chance you picked up what you could from the streets, the old-fashioned way — or, if you were a more adventurous sort, you skulked down to a seedy neighborhood movie theater to catch a tawdry exploitation film masquerading as “education.”  The odds are pretty good that you’d have seen the amateurish teen-sex scare film Mom and Dad, directed by B-picture hack William “One-Shot” Beaudine and road-showed all over the country by the sleaze-entrepreneur Kroger Babb, and drifted home afterwards feeling like you needed a shower (although being no better informed than you were when you bought the ticket).  Read More »

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Praise for 24 Hour Comic

Comic-Con screening follows national distribution for Oregon comics doc

Cartoonist-stars Paul Guinan and David Chelsea join filmmaker Milan Erceg to celebrate 24 Hour Comic screening at San Diego Comic-Con International Independent Film Festival.

Cartoonist-stars Paul Guinan and David Chelsea join filmmaker Milan Erceg to celebrate 24 Hour Comic screening at San Diego Comic-Con International Independent Film Festival.

The biggest little indie feature doc in Oregon, 24 Hour Comic, screened at the San Diego Comic-Con International Independent Film Festival this July. Director Milan Erceg, whose film documents a marathon of comic book creation, says the recognition from Comic-Con film festival “is about the biggest honor we could have.” Comic-Con founder Mike Towry, who attended the screening, said he found 24 Hour Comic “interesting and entertaining.” Nat Gertler, who launched the first 24-hour comic day in 2004 which ultimately inspired Erceg’s movie, also joined 24 Hour Comic filmmakers and cast members in San Diego to celebrate the film’s acceptance at one of the world’s most important pop culture festivals.

“We never would have guessed this little documentary would have the response and opportunities that it has had” says Erceg.  Read More »

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Raiders of the Lost Archive – Metal Messiah: Born Again Sage (Nick Wells, 2010)

Raiders continues its Back to School theme this week with some much needed Music Appreciation. Whether you launched your appreciation of a certain genre of Energy Music through Heavy Metal Parking Lot, or just hours of stereo volumes pegged to 11 followed by blurry road trips to see Ozzy or Mötley Crüe, or maybe you just liked the wardrobe and appreciate Mark Wahlberg in “Rock Star” – we all have been touched in some way by our own rock n’ roll journey and Raider Contributor Phil Oppenheim takes us down one particular path that starts at Oregon City High School (and, coincidentally or ironically enough, the shooting location for Netflix’s “Everything Sucks” this past summer).

One of the greatest joys for movie raiders is discovering the micro-budgeted indie movies hiding unheralded in the back racks of movie rental stores, overshadowed by mega-branded blockbusters in endless alphabetical listings in streaming services, or buried at 3 am on cable tv.  They’re unchampioned by studio marketers or public-relations flacks, and often rely only on the kindness of strangers — or the strangeness of movie nerds — for attention and love.  These weird little pics might be lacking in professional slickness or conventional standards of commercial entertainment, but at their best they make up for all of that stuff in individualistic vision, passionate authenticity, and genuine surprises.

Metal Messiah: Born Again Sage, produced, written, directed, and starring Nick Wells (AKA The Phantom Hillbilly) is, for me, that kind of movie.   Read More »

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Oregon Locations Shine In “Lean on Pete”

Lean On Pete” has been collecting some great reviews, and has already premiered internationally in the Venice International Film Festival and Toronto International Film Festival, and also screened in the US at Telluride.   Writer-Director, Andrew Haigh  (“45 Years”) adapted Willy Vlautin’s 2010 novel of the same name, that shot in Oregon last summer.  The #OregonMade feature made great use of locations, shooting in NE , and SE Portland, at the Portland Meadows race track, a family ranch in Molalla, and out in eastern Oregon in Burns, Hines, and at the Harney County fairgrounds.  Oregon’s often overlooked high-desert, big sky, wide-open spaces were integral to this film, considering the events that unfold actually happened in this dusty sage-brush landscape.  Richard Lawson, of Vanity Fair, said of Haigh’s choices that they beautifully captured, “a dazzling array of lonely and picturesque landscapes in the scrub deserts of eastern Oregon and Idaho.”

“Lean on Pete” follows the story of “fifteen-year-old Charley Thompson (Charlie Pummer) who,wants a home, food on the table and a high school he can attend for more than part of the year. As the son of a single father working in warehouses across the Pacific Northwest, stability is hard to find. Hoping for a new start they move to Portland, Oregon where Charley takes a summer job, with a washed-up horse trainer, (Steve Buscemi) and befriends a failing racehorse named Lean on Pete.” (IMBD)  “Lean on Pete”premiered at the Venice Film Festival 201728 Aug 2017 – 06 Sep 2017, and at the Toronto International Film Festival September 7-17th.


Vanity Fair



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categories #OregonMade, Acting, Featured Locations, Film and Media Industry, Film Festivals, Independent Films, Locations, News, Oregon Film, Portland, Rural Production, Uncategorized | comments Comments (2)

World Premiere Of North Of Blue By Indie Animation Queen – Joanna Priestley


Acclaimed Indie animation queen Joanna Priestley has jumped off the deep end of the image pool into a luscious, mind bending, abstract animated feature film that will premiere at the Hollywood Theatre (Portland, OR) on September 21, 2017 at 7 PM. North of Blue (60 min.) began in the mysterious winter landscape of the far north where Priestley was filmmaker-in-residence at the Klondike Institute of Art and Culture in Dawson City, Canada. The program will include a special slide show about the Yukon and a demonstration on how the film was made. Tickets are available now.

Drawing inspiration from natural landscapes, “North of Blue” offers a dense multiverse of images and shifting focal points where scenes transmogrify from rhythmic dances to sublime trance-inducing patterns. Priestley deconstructs conventional icons to create shapes that spark a sense of connection and shared history. Jamie Haggerty’s music and sound design, with additional sound effects by Chris Barber, provide a dense soundscape and melodic compliment to the ever evolving patterns of Priestley’s animation. Paint effects and title design and animation were created by Brian Kinkley. All of the crew is from Portland, OR. Animation assistants on “North of Blue” were a talented quintet of interns from the Art Institute of Portland and the project was supported by fellowships from the Caldera Foundation and Willapa Bay AIR.

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