Industry News | Local Industry | Reports

News Flash: What’s Happening in the Local Film Scene

1 Jul , 1998  

Written by Liza Camellerie | Posted by:

Comings and goings, from the set, upcoming screenings, and other happenings from the local scene.

It’s here. Summer is officially here. Besides the fact that June 21 has come and gone, I know that summer is here because of the parade of the typical Hollywood blockbusters, such as the X-Files and Armageddon. (Not to mention I’m sweating.) And, summer is also a pretty hoppin’ time for New England. The vacationing, the beaches, the camping…the filmmaking.

Film Shoots

In Maine, Luis Mandoki’s (When a Man Loves a Woman) Message In a Bottle, starring Paul Newman, Kevin Costner and Robin Wright Penn, films until July 7. The Stephen King mini-series, Storm of a Century, will wrap at the end of the month. Plus, the Maine International Film Festival invades the state on July 10.

In Stowe, Vermont, Homecoming, an Indian film from RK Film and Studios in Bombay, is in production. And it’s chock full of international stars. There are also reports in this area that some major scouting is happening – by some major studios.

Recent Success Stories

New England seems to be becoming an increasingly popular setting for film and television. Not only are there multiple movies in the works, and future films pending, but NBC has just picked up the series Providence (as in Rhode Island). The plot line is basically this: A woman plastic surgeon moves back home to Providence after her life in Beverly Hills falls apart. And, of course, she returns to an incredibly quirky family. Chaos ensues. Written and created by John Masius of Touched by an Angel and St. Elsewhere, this show promises to be insightful, and, at the very least, a good time. For more information, see a preview at the NBC web site.

Two Boston-based films – Home Before Dark and The North End had successful extended runs in local theatres in June. Home Before Dark will play at the West Newton Theatre until July 2.

News to Note

All of New England’s Film Commissions convened in Providence on June 29 to discuss issues, such as means to bring more films/filmmaking to the region.

Joan Quinn Eastman has resigned her position as Director of the Mass Media Alliance. Joan was the founder of the organization. As well, Arnie Reisman, chairman of the organization resigned. In his place, David Kleiler who is also the founder/director of the independent film screening series "Local Sightings" has taken over as President of the MMA. For info about MMA go to

Women in Film and Video, New England also has a new director. Rebecca Richards has stepped down, although she remains an active board member. And Lisa Carey has taken over as the new director. Current members are invited to attend a special meeting on July 10. Email for more info about their organization.

The Independents Day Festival, which was a collection of short independent films that were cablecast across the nation through public access television stations last July 4 is going to happen again, but not until January 1999. They are working on obtaining national sponsors and will be accepting film/video entries in a few months. You can email Bridget Allen for more information at has some exciting news. In addition to our jobs and events pages, we are in the process of putting together a searchable online production guide with equipment rental companies, production companies, crew listings, and other film resources. It’s scheduled for release in August 1998. For now, you can add yourself or your company to the guide, by filling out this form.

Upcoming Film Screenings/Events

The New England Screenwriters Conference on August 7-8 will offer workshops, panel discussions, private consultations, and a reading of this year’s award-winning script.   There’s still time to register, so visit their site for more info.

Independent film screenings are happening all over New England this summer. The Boston Public Library will run its annual "Documentaries: New and Noteworthy" series every Thursday. Somerville (Mass.) filmmaker Laurel Chiten’s film The Jew in the Lotus will screen this month at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. And so will Cambridge Documentary Films’ latest piece Strong at the Broken Places. Rhode Island filmmaker Laura Colella’s film Tax Day will have a run at the Cable Car Cinema and Café in Providence. The film There’s Something About Mary directed by Cumberland, RI natives Peter & Bobby Farrelly will have a sneak preview as part of the Rhode Island International Film Festival before being released nationally on July 15. Publisher and Founder Michele LaMura will hold to workshops this month – Creating an Online Magazine on Tuesday, July 7 at the Boston Center for Adult Education (617-267-4430) and Marketing Your Film Business Online on Thursday, July 16 from 6-8 pm at the Boston Film and Video Foundation (

On July 10, Dear Jesse, by gay New York filmmaker, Tim Kirkman, opens at the Coolidge Corner Theatre. The film addresses Kirkman’s relationship to Jessie Helms, the arch conservative, anti-homosexual activist. And, at the Kendall Square Cinema, their Sunday Cinema Club will resume at the end of the summer.

So enjoy your month. Keep cool, go to the movies and festivals – it’s air conditioned.