Hell's Half Mile Film/Music Festival Celebrates 5th Year
Film & Music Festival Continues to Grow in Bay City
August 1, 2010
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By: Julie McCallum, Entertainment Editor
Hell's Half Mile Festival Celebrates Five Years Film and Music Festival Continues to Grow in Bay City The Hell's Half Mile Film and Music Festival is celebrating its fifth year.
September 30 - October 3, 2010 in Bay City, Michigan
Fans of independent film and music are invited to attend the festival, which runs from September 30, 2010 to October 3, 2010 in Bay City, Michigan.
In just four years, Hell's Half Mile has become a major annual event for lovers of film and music, drawing over 5,000 attendees to Mid-Michigan to take in fine films and related events.
HHM attendees include compulsive cinephiles. college students looking for edgy entertainment and substance-seeking Michigan citizens craving a great entertainment experience outside the mainstream. The festival celebrates with the energy of Bay City's spirited past, referring specifically to a strip of raucous saloons and two-bit hotels known as Hell's Half Mile, where turn-of-the-century loggers and shipmen would go to blow off steam and take in more than a little local color. Time has passed but the same rough-and-tumble spirit of the day is reborn in the Hell's Half Mile Film & Music Festival.
Hell's Half Mile puts the 'festive' in festival with an opening night street party event (September 30, 2010) in downtown Bay City and fun social events all weekend. The festival screens feature films, short and animated films, and documentaries in both short and feature categories. Many films are handpicked from major festivals like the Tribeca Film Festival in New York City, while others come from homegrown filmmakers in Michigan and around the world.
Along with the films, HHM offers live performances from outstanding bands hailing from Detroit, Chicago and elsewhere. Headlining the music for the 2010 Festival will be Philadelphia indie rockers, Matt Pond PA. Bands and audiences enjoy a first-rate performance space at the former Masonic Temple Club, which has fast become known as the most atmospheric and acoustically rich music venue in our region.
"Hell's Half Mile is another opportunity to bring people to the region and show them a great time," says Alan LaFave, Hell's Half Mile Founder and Festival Director. "And while we've been really excited about the people who come from elsewhere, we've been really excited to see how many people from the area both attend and support the festival, both through attendance and individual sponsorships."
HHM has become known as a proving ground for regional films bound for bigger things, such as Sultan Sharrief's film The Story of Bilal, which screened at HHM festival before being featured in its final cut at this year's Sundance Film Festival (as Bilal's Stand).
HHM audiences have been treated to early screenings of independent films with first-rate actors. Many selections have gone on to wide distribution, including Mary Stewart Masterson's directorial debut The Cake Eaters (with Kristen Stewart), Jac Schaeffer's Timer (with Emma Caulfield) and Simon Brand's Unknown (with Greg Kinnear and Jim Caviziel).
HHM also gives attendees great access to filmmakers. Many screenings include Q&A sessions with filmmakers. In addition, participating filmmakers participate in panel discussions and hold workshops on subjects ranging from screenwriting to cinematography.
New for 2010, the Festival will convene a number of other festival organizers to include a Great Lakes Region Film Festival Conference. Participants and festival organizers will have the opportunity to share their behind-the-scenes experiences, from programming films to finding sponsors and spaces to screen films. The event organizers hope to create a network of festivals, to share best practices and help support independent film in the region.
Hell's Half Mile Celebrates 5 Years. "For many people, the highlight of the festival is getting the chance to attend a screening and then hang around for the Q&A sessions with the filmmakers," says LaFave. "It gives people a chance to ask questions and get a glimpse of what goes into making a feature film." HHM truly offers an array of film and music unlike any other festival and the fifth year promises to be better than ever.
For more information on the Festival, please visit www.hhmfest.com. Hell's Half Mile Film and Music Festival is a fifth-year event which takes place every fall in Bay City, Michigan.
Arts/Theater Article 5117
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