Tonight at Filmland 2019: FREE SOLO on the CALS Ron Robinson screen

Free solo climbing is the most dangerous form of rock climbing. No ropes, no harness, no protective equipment.

The documentary FREE SOLO follows Alex Honnold’s free-solo ascent in 2017 of El Capitan in Yosemite as he becomes the first solo climber to do so. FREE SOLO won an Academy Award this year for Best Documentary Feature.

Q&A following the screening with producer Evan Hayes.

Evan Hayes won an Oscar for producing the film FREE SOLO. Evan was also the production executive on the hit TV show “Outlander”, and during his eleven years at Working Title Films he worked as a producer or executive on such films as EVEREST, LES MISERABLES,TINKER TAILOR SOLDIER SPY, FROST/NIXON, A SERIOUS MAN, BURN AFTER READING, HOT FUZZ, and UNITED 93.

The screening starts at 6:30pm tonight (August 23) with doors to the CALS Ron Robinson Theater opening at 6:00pm.

Following the film, the after-party will take place at The Railyard from 9pm to midnight.

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TROOP ZERO and short films made by Arkansas teen girls highlight first night of Arkansas Cinema Society FILMLAND

Mckenna Grace in Troop Zero (2019)On August 22, Filmland’s curated programming officially gets underway with Troop Zero, which stars Viola Davis, McKenna Grace, Jim Gaffigan, and Allison Janney.

In rural 1977 Georgia, a misfit girl dreams of life in outer space. When a competition offers her a chance to be recorded on NASA’s Golden Record, she recruits a makeshift troop of Birdie Scouts, forging friendships that last a lifetime.

The film marks a reunion for Oscar winner (and Tony nominee) Janney with Oscar winner (and Tony winner) Davis who appeared in THE HELP.  It also reunites Janney and Grace, who appeared together in I, TONYA.

Before the film, “Ensemble” and “Justitia” two short films from the ACS Filmmaking Lab for Teen Girls will be screened.

After the film, there will be a Q&A moderated by ACS founder Jeff Nichols with writer Lucy Alibar and director BERT.

The showing is taking place at the CALS Ron Robinson Theater.  Doors open at 5:30pm for a 6:00pm screening.  The after-party will be at Buenos Aires Grill.

Men & Women of Distinction: Mike Beebe will be shown by Arkansas Cinema Society tonight at CALS Ron Robinson Theater

Tonight the Arkansas Cinema Society is getting things started with a documentary about the 45th Governor of Arkansas, Mike Beebe.  

In 2010, a red tide swept Arkansas, flipping many federal and state offices to Republican control. But Democratic Governor Mike Beebe not only won re-election, he carried all 75 counties in Arkansas, an unprecedented feat. How did he do that?

Watch AETN: Men & Women of Distinction’s biography of Governor Mike Beebe.  In this uplifting one-hour documentary, commissioned in 2015 and directed by Kathryn Tucker, the former Governor reflects on his 32 years in elected office, with added perspectives from his wife Ginger, former Governor’s Chief of Staff – Morril Harriman, former Governor’s Director of Communications – Matt DeCample, columnist – John Brummett,  ASU fraternity brother & longtime friend – Johnny Allison, and former Attorney General’s Chief of Staff – Colette Honorable.

Matt DeCample, who served on Governor Beebe’s staff was instrumental in working with the Arkansas Cinema Society during its first two years. Today (August 21) is Matt’s birthday. Though he died earlier this year after a valiant battle with cancer, Matt’s presence continues with the Arkansas Cinema Society (not just through his appearance in this film). A special tribute to Matt will also be part of the program.

The program is at the CALS Ron Robinson Theatre.  Doors open at 5:00pm with the screening starting at 6:30pm.

RESERVE TICKETS here.

South Words, a new author series, is announced by OXFORD AMERICAN

The Oxford American is pleased to announce South Words, a new author series at Ron Robinson Theater (100 River Market Ave., Little Rock, AR 72201) featuring renowned OA contributors.

The inaugural season features Sarah M. Broom, author of The Yellow House (Tuesday, October 15, 2019); Van Jensen and Nate Powell, author and illustrator of Two Dead (Tuesday, November 19, 2019); Silas House, author of Southernmost (Tuesday, February 25, 2019); and Leesa Cross-Smith, author of So We Can Glow: Stories (Tuesday, March 31, 2020). At each event, the author will read from his or her work, then be interviewed onstage by a moderator. The events, all of which are free and open to the public, begin at 6:30 PM, with the doors opening at 6 PM. Books will be for sale onsite and authors will participate in a signing.

The presenting sponsor for South Words is the College of Fine Arts & Communication at the University of Central Arkansas. The series is presented in partnership with the CALS Six Bridges Book Festival. Additional season partners include the Clinton School of Public Service, Villa Vue at SOMA, the Arkansas Arts Council, and the Department of Parks, Heritage, and Tourism

The Yellow House by Sarah M. Broom, who published an essay called “A Yellow House in New Orleans” in the Oxford American’s Spring 2008 issue, is a memoir set in a shotgun house in New Orleans East. The book was published on August 13, 2019, to wide acclaim, including from New York Times critic Dwight Garner, who called it “a major book that I suspect will come to be considered among the essential memoirs” of the decade. In a cover feature in the New York Times Book Review on August 11, Angela Flourney wrote: “[The Yellow House] is an instantly essential text, examining the past, present and possible future . . . of America writ large.” The conversation with Broom will be moderated by KaToya Ellis Fleming, the OA’s 2019-20 Jeff Baskin Fellow.

Little Rock native Nate Powell, the artist of the #1 New York Times bestselling and National Book Award-winning illustrated trilogy March, has said, “I’m always eager to bring my home state to life through comics, and each book doubles as a love letter to Arkansas in all its contradictory beauty.” His next book, Two Dead, a Little Rock noir set in the 1940s, is a collaboration with author Van Jensen, a former crime reporter at the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. The South Words event with Powell and Jensen will occur on the book’s November 19 publication date. A 16-page excerpt from Two Dead was published in the Oxford American’s Fall 2019 issue. The conversation with Powell and Jensen will be moderated OA Senior Editor Jay Jennings, author of Carry the Rock.

Silas House is a frequent New York Times contributor and the nationally bestselling author of six novels, including Southernmost, which was published in June 2018 and long-listed for the Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction and named a best book of the year by Booklist, the Advocate, Garden & Gun, Southern Living, and Paste. Excerpted on OxfordAmerican.org, Southernmost is the story of evangelical preacher Asher Sharp, who offers shelter to two gay men after a flood in a small Tennessee town. The conversation with House will be moderated by Seth Pennington, editor-in-chief of Sibling Rivalry Press.

Leesa Cross-Smith made her Oxford American debut in 2017 with “Ain’t Half Bad,” her widely read essay about Sturgill Simpson for the Kentucky music issue; in 2018, she was a regular contributor to The By and By, the OA’s online story series. She is the author of Whiskey & Ribbons (longlisted for the 2018 Center for Fiction First Novel Prize and listed among Oprah Magazine’s “Top Books of Summer”), Every Kiss a War, and So We Can Glow, a collection of forty-two short stories forthcoming from Grand Central Press on March 10, 2020. The conversation with Cross-Smith will be moderated by OA contributing editor Kevin Brockmeier, who is the author, most recently, of A Few Seconds of Radiant Filmstrip: A Memoir of Seventh Grade.

For more information about South Words, visit OxfordAmerican.org/events

Celebrate Country Music tonight at CALS Ron Robinson Theater

Join the Central Arkansas Library System as they celebrate country music with a screening of the 45-minute advance trailer of Ken Burns’ Country Music documentary.

The showing will be followed by a special performance of classic country songs by The Salty Dogs and special guests Buck TrentTim Crouch and Chuck Dodson.

The sixteen-hour Country Music film premieres September 15th on AETN/PBS.

This event is FREE and open to the public with general admission seating on a first come, first served basis. Doors open at 7:00pm and the event starts at 8:00pm.

Presented by CALS Arkansas Sounds and AETN/PBS.

Six Weeks of STAR WARS on CALS Ron Robinson Theater screen ends with RETURN OF THE JEDI

Tonight the triple fortnight concludes with 1983’s Episode 6 – Return of the Jedi  

As an epic battle for the fate of the galaxy approaches, the Empire quickly finishes construction on another Death Star battle station, and the Emperor himself soon arrives to personally oversee the operation. Rescuing Han Solo from his captor Jabba the Hutt, Princess Leia helps organize the Rebel attack and Luke Skywalker prepares for final confrontation with Darth Vader to prove himself a Jedi and perhaps bring out the good within his father’s soul.

This is the film which (SPOILER ALERT) Boba Fett dies.  It is also the movie in which Carrie Fisher had to wear a gold bikini.

The cast includes Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Harrison Ford, Alec Guinness (in cameos), Anthony Daniels, Peter Mayhew, Kenny Baker, David Prowse, Ian McDiarmid, and the voice of James Earl Jones.

Directed by Richard Marquand (selected by George Lucas), the film was nominated for four Oscars: Music (John Williams third nomination for the trilogy), Sound Effects, Sound, and Art Direction.  As had the first two films in the triad, it received a Special Oscar for Visual Effects.

The screening starts tonight, August 15, at 7pm. Admission is $5.00.

Make plans now to attend Arkansas Cinema Society’s FILMLAND 2019

Image result for arkansas cinema societyIndividual tickets are now on sale for events during the Arkansas Cinema Society’s Filmland.  The films will be shown at the CALS Ron Robinson Theater.

The 2019 edition kicks off with a special premiere screening on Wednesday, August 21.  As part of the AETN’s Men and Women of Distinction series, there will be a premiere of Gov. Mike Beebe.  Doors open at 5pm for a 6:30pm screening.  The after-party will be in Sonny Williams’ Steak Room.

On August 22, Filmland’s curated programming officially gets underway with Troop Zero, which stars Viola Davis, McKenna Grace, Jim Gaffigan, and Allison Janney.  Before the film, “Ensemble” and “Justitia” two short films from the ACS Filmmaking Lab for Teen Girls will be screened.  After the film, there will be a Q&A moderated by ACS founder Jeff Nichols with writer Lucy Alibar and director BERT.  Doors open at 5:30pm for a 6:00pm screening.  The after-party will be at Buenos Aires Grill.

Academy Award winning documentary Free Solo takes the screen on Friday, August 23.  After the film, there will be a discussion between ACS Baord Member Jayme Lemons and Oscar winning producer Evan Hayes.  The after-party will be at The Rail Yard.

Based on the memoirs of Arkansan Garrard Conley, Boy Erased will be shown on Saturday, August 24.  The film stars Nicole Kidman, Lucas Hedges and Russell Crowe.  Doors open at 5:30pm with the screening starting at 6:00pm.  Following the movie, there will be a Q&A between Jeff Nichols and the film’s director Joel Edgerton.  The after-party will be at The Rev Room.

On Sunday afternoon, August 25, Toy Story 4 will be shown. Featuring the voices of Tom Hanks, Tim Allen, Annie Potts, Tony Hale, and others.  Doors open at 2:00pm with the screening starting at 2:30pm.  After the film, there will be a Q&A between Jeff Nichols and the film’s co-writer Andrew Stanton.

Stanton returns that evening for a screening of two episodes from Season 2 of “Stranger Things.”  Chapters 5 and 6 will be shown.  Doors open at 5:30pm and the showing starts at 6pm. There will be another Q&A between Nichols and Stanton following the episodes.  The after-party will be at Lost Forty.

The schedule for the ACS Filmland Arkansas Program has not yet been announced.  So stay tuned…..

While individual tickets are available (and on-sale now) many of the events sell-out.  A Filmland pass is the best way to guarantee access to events.  They are only $250 through August 17.