From OSF’s O! Original Programming Comes New Short Film – “Ash Land”

The OAFG21 winning team on the set of “Ash Land”, from left to right – Adrian Alea, Shariffa Ali, & Courtney Williams.

From the team that recently won the fourth annual Outdoor Adventure Film Grant – “Oregon’s Outdoors Are For Everyone” (OAFG21) with their winning application, (entitled, “You Go Girl”) is their newly released, “Ash Land.”  This short film is part of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s “O!” original programming  – an immersive and interactive digital space where there is something for everyone.

About “Ash Land” – from the filmmakers “we offer a portrait of a Black woman who has turned her back on herself, afflicted by a quiet, insidious malaise. Her once-beloved refuge is now a den for survival, and rituals that were once joyous have become militaristic attempts at de-stressing. Compounded by the pandemic, she can no longer outrun the internal torment. When an enigmatic spirit finally catches up to her, she cultivates an understanding of true restoration and rebirth that reignites her love of Ashland. In this film, our proposal to humanity is simple: We are the ones we have been waiting for. We must heal us. We must cultivate our own joy. We must inhabit spaces in the fullness of our truth. We must love ourselves inclusive of and not in spite of our mortal wounds. We Black. We in Oregon. Look at us.” “Ash Land” was directed by Shariffa Ali,  produced by Adrian Alea,  produced by Courtney Williams, executive produced by Tariq “Black Thought” Trotter.

Read more and watch the film.

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New streaming channel for shows about archaeology and cultural heritage!

We have exciting news about a new streaming channel that our Oregon nonprofit has created for shows about archaeology and cultural heritage.

We made this for people who may be tired of mindless reality TV shows, or watered-down content disguising itself as science, and who might be interested in binge-worthy shows, NOT from Netflix, that people can watch on their own smart TVs.

After having been streaming video online for more that 20 years, and having access to a network of hundreds of content producers and distributors around the world, ALI is well positioned to develop this new service. We believe it will attract both viewers and new producers, especially audiences are hungry for diverse content that they can watch at home.

Heritage Broadcasting Service, or just plain Heritage, is already available during our Beta Launch and will launch formally on January 1. Developed by nonprofit Archaeological Legacy Institute (that’s us, the people who created The Archaeology Channel at archaeologychannel.org), Heritage at the outset features more than 100 outstanding film titles from many countries on familiar subjects such as ancient Egypt, Stonehenge, Mesoamerica, and Peru, but also on diverse and rarer topics ranging from prehistoric astronomers to the only Japanese bombing of the US mainland in World War II. Many more titles are in the pipeline. Subscribers can watch all the shows on their desktop computers, tablets and smartphones, and beginning on January 4, 2021, will be able to watch on their smart TVs with Roku as well. See our short video about Heritage at https://youtu.be/e8md5evVUro.

You can check out the Heritage site now at heritageTAC.org, where you can watch many trailers already, even without subscribing, and read descriptions of the dozens of titles posted there so far. Subscriptions ($5.99 per month, with discounts for longer terms) are available now, and gift cards (at https://heritagetac.org/gift_cards/new) are available as well for redemption immediately. People can support this nonprofit service now by reserving gift cards as presents or even for themselves.

We are working to spread the word widely about Heritage. Please help us do that! Thanks very much.

Rick Pettigrew

Richard M. (Rick) Pettigrew, Ph.D., RPA
President and Executive Director
Archaeological Legacy Institute
4147 E. Amazon Dr.
Eugene, OR 97405
USA
[email protected]
www.archaeologychannel.org
541-345-5538

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Oregon Production During The Time Of Covid -Round Up From OregonLive

Kristi Turnquist (OregonLive) gives us a quick rundown of what has been happening with Oregon production –  including an update on Top Chef – and how the strict Covid-19 protocols have made work possible.

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#OregonMade “Love In Dangerous Times” – A Romance Set In A Pandemic, Filmed In A Pandemic

#OregonMade “Love In Dangerous Times“, chronicles a budding romance via a dating app as the whole world struggles with a worsening panemic.  Created by Jon Garcia, and starring Ian Stout, Tiffany Groben, Jimmy Garcia, Bruce Jennings, and David Allen and shot in downtown Portland – in a pandemic!

Willamette Week caught up with the filmmakers who explained what it was like shooting their film during the time of Covid – read more.

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Welcome To The World Of “Rival Peak” – Pipeworks’ New Cloud Game/Reality Show Now On Facebook

Pipeworks Studios (and Genvid Technologies) unveiled “Rival Peak” this week – a brand new interactive game experience that is part reality show and part game, now running on Facebook.  12 AI characters make up the contestants who are competing, “Surivoresque” style, in a beautiful Pacific Northwest landscape. The Facebook audience will be able to influence the fate of their favorite AI characters in real-time.  The show will run 24 hours a day and is hosted by Wil Wheaton (“Stand By Me”).

Read more.

 

 

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The New Normal – How Our Production Community Is Adapting To Covid-19 – PDXpendables.

 

Just arrived Matthshield. A clear marine vinyl flag intended for creating a quick COVID barrier. Or a rain cover.

In our series of blog posts – the “New Normal” – we are looking at what creative options have been put in place to offset the disruption that Covid-19 has caused for production businesses here in Oregon.  This month we caught up with PDXpendables LLC, one of the Pacific Northwest’s Stage and Studio supply solutions. Whether it is film, photo, or theater, they’ll “have the gear you need at a great rate and will bring it to you. This innovative approach will save you time as well as money

Oregon Film caught up with Don Rohrbacker, Co-Owner of PDXpendables, to talk about how the Covid-19 pandemic may have disrupted their business.

Oregon Film (OF): Like so many other businesses that have been affected by Covid-19, what aspect would you say has been the most surprising?

Don Rohrbacker (DR): The most heartening thing has been the resilience of the stop motion features. In terms of volume, these shows make up the majority of the orders since March. All four animated projects have been ordering on a regular basis.

Don Rohrbacker making a delivery. Pictured is Bruce Fleskes and Diante Grinner.

OF: What are the main modifications you have had to make to accommodate this new normal? (Which ideas have worked/been successful, which ones not so much…)

DR: No real modifications were needed, outside of increased sanitation regimes. Our approach even before the pandemic was to operate from a business suite with inventory stored in warehouses and delivered to clients. They don’t come to us.

OF: Are there any surprising areas of growth in your business since the pandemic started?

DR: We’ve had increased sales from all around the country for small hand tools such as Pin Splitters and Greeking Books.

OF: Have you had to implement new training for your staff?

DR: No.

OF: If there has been any impact on staff morale, how have you successfully been able to mitigate this? What are you most proud of doing well during this challenging time?  Read More »

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Southern Oregon Comedy Film Festival Adapts To Virtual Streaming

killer-valley-comedy-film-festival-2020

The 2020 Killer Valley Comedy Film Festival (KVCFF) follows the 13-year legacy of the horror film festival that introduced “Killer Valley” to the Pacific Northwest, and will stream on their official website from Friday, Friday, Nov. 20 – Sunday, Dec. 6, 2020. 

For 10 years, the horror film festival had been a one-night affair, hosted live in Ashland, OR.  By its eleventh year (2018) the contributions from filmmakers from around the globe had grown into two nights worth of content, and the team split the program so that one night held all the satire, spoofs, and “so-bad-it’s-funny” movies, while the other night showcased the creepy, spooky, and truly scary films of the horror genre. 

2020-Killer-Valley-Comedy-Festival-Poster_webFollowing the positive feedback from their audience, the Killer Valley team spawned a second genre film festival, this time to celebrate the best original comedy films from underground and emerging filmmakers. Now in only the second year of their comedy fest, the organizers have had to tackle the challenge of showcasing the collection of highly laughable movies without a live event.  

Last month, in October 2020, The Killer Valley Horror Film Festival (KVHFF) launched virtually on their website, and the filmmakers behind the movies streamed could not have been happier.  Traditionally held in Southern Oregon, often only the local and near-local filmmakers were able to attend. As submissions began to grow beyond the Pacific Northwest, this left more of the filmmakers out of the experience of enjoying other new movies and networking with filmmakers within their favorite genre. 

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University of Oregon Coeds Made The Very First Student Feature Film

Filming of “Ed’s Coed” on the University of Oregon campus, with student actors sitting on the Senior Bench during a break between scenes.

It is a forgotten piece of film history for all but the staunchest of aficionados, and its box office draw was almost nonexistent; yet a little-known feature film in the last thralls of the silent film era stands as a remarkable footnote in history as the first feature-length student film ever made – completed by University of Oregon students.

Pursuing Hollywood

Known originally simply as The Campus Movie and later Green before settling on its final title Ed’s Coed, the 1929 film project was conceived by a trio of University of Oregon students. James Raley Jr.’s best friend, Carvel Nelson, had worked on the set of the 1928 film City Girl in Pendleton that summer, and while visiting his friend Raley had access to the set, inspiring dreams of making a film of their own. Enlisting the help of fellow student Ron Hubbs, the students envisioned a film that told the college experience. Emboldened by their on-set experience, the students sent repeated telegrams to iconic film director Cecil B. DeMille asking for guidance.

Meanwhile, an out-of-work cameraman, James McBride, had moved back home to the Pacific Northwest from Hollywood for medical reasons after working on numerous films, including four with DeMille; Feet of Clay (1924), The Volga Boatman (1926), King of Kings (1927), and The Godless Girl (1929). McBride reached out to DeMille asking if he knew of any work in the area, and DeMille responded with a recommendation to Hubbs and Raley to hire McBride to create their film concept.

Filming on a canoe on the Millrace for “Ed’s Coed” (courtesy UO Special Collections)

With McBride on board and the eager students enlisting friends to help, other students soon joined the project. Myron Griffin coordinated five student writers along with faculty assistance to develop the script, Hubbs managed finances, and by February as word spread more than 50 students had become actively involved in its development. From costumes to props to publicity, the collaborative grew in expanse and expense, with grandiose dreams that the film would quickly make them rich and famous.

Thus was sparked a relationship that would result in what is widely considered the first student feature film ever made, 1929’s Ed’s Coed – a romantic comedy written, performed, and produced entirely by University of Oregon students…with McBride’s vital assistance.

The film, which is available to watch for free on YouTube thanks to the University of Oregon, is a fascinating time capsule of college life in the 1920s. From a historic aspect, it documents locations and individuals on campus instrumental in the university’s longstanding growth and success, while documenting many of the traditions and unusual antics of college students in the early half of the 20th century.

The student production team behind “Ed’s Coed” (courtesy 1930 Oregana)

Campus life

Practices such as the requirement of freshmen to wear green “lids” at all times, otherwise, be subject to humiliating paddlings on the steps of the administration building, seems the stuff of obvious lawsuits today, but in the 1920s it was not just commonplace — but expected. Beware any underclassmen who dared to sit on the senior bench, lest they be dunked in the senior fountain, nor get caught wearing cords or the senior patrol will dish out justice. There were tugs-of-war across the Millrace (a man-made waterway next to campus branching off from the Willamette River built originally as a power source for downtown Eugene factories and to float logs to mills), a canoe house for coeds to cruise, a “Hello Walk” between residence halls that required all students to say hello to passersby, and more traditions and unwritten rules that were the norm for students at the University of Oregon captured in the film.

University of Oregon students conduct a tug-of-war across the Millrace for a scene in “Ed’s Coed” (courtesy UO Special Collections)

Some sites showcased in Ed’s Coed no longer exist. Outdoor daytime dances were commonly held on tennis courts across from Hayward Field, space now occupied by residence halls. Hayward Field, built-in 1919, is featured as a track facility, including participation in the film by legendary track coach Bill Hayward, for whom the facility is named. While the recent multi-million dollar shining jewel on campus retains the now-iconic name of Hayward Field, none of the original structure remains.

While the Prospector statue that stood on the campus for a century recently was toppled amidst Black Lives Matter protests, some historic landmarks on campus featured in the film still stand. The Senior Bench is largely ignored by students today, as is the now drained Senior Fountain, but both remain visible on campus. The steps of Johnson Hall are prominently featured in the film, which would make film history again nearly 50 years later in 1977 when John Belushi famously falls while attempting to sneak a horse into the dean’s office in the most famous college-life film ever concocted – National Lampoon’s Animal House.

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Actor/Producer Ashley Mellinger Hosts OMPA’s BIPOC Meetup this Thursday, 11/19

OMPA Creatives of Color Collaborative hosted by Ashley Mellinger, November 19, 3-5pm. RSVP for Zoom info.

OMPA Creatives of Color Collaborative

Thursday, November 19 | 3-5pm PT | RSVP for Zoom Info

Are you a BIPOC* professional seeking community with other Oregon creatives? Join OMPA’s next Creatives of Color Collaborative to network, give or get advice, and ask questions in a private space.

This month’s host is award-winning actor and producer Ashley Mellinger. As a member of OMPA’s Diversity Committee, she is helping lead the effort to center diversity in Oregon’s production incentives. Ashley is also Co-Founder of Desert Island Studios, an artist space and resource in Portland.

Come chat about Portland’s indie scene, equity work in our industry, or anything else you want to bring to the group! 

RSVP for Zoom Info

*Note: OMPA’s virtual Creatives of Color Collaborative events are a private space for BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) to talk openly. While we appreciate allies, please respect this need.

• • •

About the Host: Ashley Mellinger

As an artist with a background in both film and theatre, Ashley Mellinger is committed to telling stories that re-imagine traditional narratives and include marginalized voices without centering on their identities and their trauma. She is an award-winning half-Korean actor and producer. After graduating from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts and working in NYC for a decade, she moved to Portland, Oregon and co-founded Desert Island Studios to increase artists’ accessibility to film resources. 

Recent producing credits include Dawn Jones Redstone’s proof-of-concept for her debut feature film Noelia, and Roland Dahwen-Wu’s debut feature Borrufa. Pre-pandemic, her writing debut L’Ortolan was accepted in the 2020 Spliff Film Festival and Portland Shorts Fest. Just after the pandemic, she co-wrote and starred in the AAFL 72-Hour Shootout film, Vent (which won 2nd Runner Up, Best Editor, and Best Screenwriter).  

• • •

About the Organizer: OMPA

Oregon Media Production Association (OMPA) is a central resource that thousands of production professionals turn to for reliable information, political advocacy, and advancing common interests. Please Donate or Become a Member to support our work in the industry!

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#OregonMade “First Cow” Receives 4 Gotham Nominations!

A24’s period drama, “First Cow has been recognized by The Gothams for Best Feature, Screenplay, Actor, and Breakthrough Actor in its 30th annual event. “First Cow” shot entirely on location in Oregon last year at; Oxbow Regional Park, Sauvie Island, Portland, Milo McIver State Park, San Salvador State Beach, and Elkton among other locations.

  • Best Feature, Kelly Reichardt (Director), Neil Kopp, Vincent Savino, Anish Savjani (Producers).
  • Best Screenplay, Jon Raymond, Kelly Reichardt.
  • Best Actor, John Magaro.
  • Best Breakthrough Actor, Orion Lee.

 

The IFP Gotham Awards are selected by distinguished juries and presented in New York City, the home of independent film. This public showcase honors the filmmaking community, expands the audience for independent films, and supports the work that IFP does behind the scenes throughout the year to bring such films to fruition.

(If you have not yet seen “First Cow” you can find it now on Amazon Prime and Showtime.)


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