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Commission assists Animal Planet in project

Hard work paid off today as The Memphis & Shelby County Film and Television Commission and The City of Memphis Division of Parks and Neighborhoods welcomed the Animal Planet network TV show Pit Bulls & Parolees to the new Memphis Animal Services Shelter. And there's now a new future for one lucky pit bull!

It's not just any pit bull -- this famous dog got lots of media coverage when he was recently rescued after being stuck in a drain pipe along Memphis' Greenline. Today, Memphis Grizzly Zach 'Z-Bo' Randolph escorted the dog — now known as "Little Z-Bo" -- to the van that will take it to its new home in New Orleans. Look for the episode to air this winter on The Animal Planet Network!

For more info, see media coverage of the story on WMC-TV Channel 5 here, WREG-TV Channel 3 here and WHBQ Fox13 News here.

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Memphis' own Craig Brewer rocks with Katy Perry music doc

Congratulations to Craig Brewer, the Memphis filmmaker who has done several projects here (with assistance from the Memphis & Shelby County Film and Television Commission) and is getting an increasingly higher profile in Hollywood.

His latest gig is as executive producer of Katy Perry: Part of Me, a 3-D behind-the-scenes documentary from Paramount on the dance-pop star as she did her global tour last year.

A special screening was held earlier this month at the Malco Paradiso with Craig in attendance and the film getting an enthusiastic reception.

Here's a review from the Movie Lady on Fox13 — also known as Linn Sitler, Commissioner of the Memphis & Shelby County Film and Television Commission.

And for more info, read John Beifuss' story in The Commercial Appeal here

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'Romance of Loneliness' premieres Sept. 12

Here's a press release from the makers of The Romance of Loneliness, filmed in Memphis with assistance from the Memphis & Shelby County Film & Television Commission:


We are thrilled to announce the Memphis-made feature film The Romance of Loneliness by Sarah Ledbetter & Matteo Servente will premiere on Wednesday Sept 12th at Malco Paradiso with a special concert by Memphis favorites Deering & Down.

What: Film Premiere & Concert: The Romance of Loneliness with Deering & Down

When: Wednesday September 12th – 6:30pm

Where: Malco Paradiso

Admission: $15 – Tickets Online & Door (if available)

Tickets available August 12th, only at RomanceOfLoneliness.com

Synopsis: Amanda, a confused young woman, abandons her plan to find herself out west to accompany her grandmother to the same-sex wedding of her cousin Cristina at a west Tennessee farmhouse.

The film made its world premiere at the Nashville Film Festival in April to a warm reception and garnered praise from The Nashville Scene which “highly recommended” the film describing it as “subtle yet strangely enthralling ... the way it’s communicated is riveting.”

Smells Like Screen Spirit says "The Romance of Loneliness plays sort of like a fairy tale ... but it maintains its strong grip on reality, remaining ever-faithful to the subtlety of its storytelling."

The Romance of Loneliness is the feature-debut for co-directors Sarah Ledbetter & Matteo Servente, the lead debut for musician/actress Amy LaVere, and the third feature film by Memphis production company Paper Moon Films.

Lynn Cohen, known for her collaborations with Woody Allen and Steven Spielberg, as well as playing Magda in Sex & The City, is featured in a lead role as the scene-stealing grandmother Mina.

The ensemble cast is comprised of other notable rising actresses Anna Margaret Hollyman (Small Beautifully Moving Parts) and Rebekah Brandes (Bellflower) joining Memphis talents Caroline White, Kentucker Audley, Bart Shannon, Jerre Dye, Luke White, Kim Justis, John Still and Ann Wallace among others.

In addition to Deering & Down, music by Memphians Star & Micey and Luke White are featured along with a beautiful score by Italian composer Andrea Dalla Fontana.

Sarah and Matteo met in Paris at the NY Film Academy and attended the following year of school in Sydney. They collaborated on Dammi Il La shot in Italy and Spain. Matteo moved to Memphis in 2007 to join Sarah developing The Romance of Loneliness.

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'Nashville' still needs extras

From the office of the Tennessee Film, Entertainment & Music Commission:

The production of Nashville -- the new ABC/Lionsgate series starring Connie Britton & Hayden Panettiere -- is looking for background extras, all ages and any ethnicity. No experience necessary. Everyone is welcome to apply!

Shooting starts at the end of July and runs through December. The pay rate for extras is $64 for the first 8 hours and overtime for every hour after 8.

If you'd like to apply to be an extra, please email a current, color photo to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it along with the following info:

Name

City, State

Phone Number(s)

Email Address

Age

Height, Weight

Shirt, pant, and shoe sizes


altOccupation

Do you have a flexible schedule?

Do you have any special abilities (ie dancing, play a musical instrument, etc)?

Automobiles available: Model/Year/Color

 

IF YOU ATTENDED THE OPEN CALL, YOU DO NOT NEED TO REAPPLY!

 

Daily News story looks at state incentives

Please follow this link to a story by the Memphis Daily News on the recent development on film incentives in Tennessee. Andy Meek's story says:

The pot of state money available to spur film production in Tennessee got a couple million dollars richer a few months ago.

Thanks to a measure sponsored this past legislative session by state Sen. Mark Norris, R-Collierville, an additional $2 million is now available to incentivize film production in the state. But the good news goes deeper than that seven-figure sum for Tennessee’s film industry.

That money represents a recurring stream of revenue for the Tennessee Film and TV Incentive Fund.

“When producers would look at Tennessee, they saw a $10 million fund that had been drawn down,” Norris said. “Investors want to know this money is a recurring prospect. This is something I’ve always been passionate about. The film industry is a wealth of economic opportunity for Tennessee, and (this incentive) is as important as any that we provide.”

The Daily News story further quotes Memphis & Shelby County Film and Television Commissioner Linn Sitler on why the state is at a disadvantage compared to states with income taxes that are part of the incentives mix.

“There’s no way we can compete for big studio pictures with states like Georgia and Louisiana, because we don’t have the coffers that they have,” Sitler said. “Tennessee doesn’t have the same way to get the incentive money back penny for penny that those states have.”

The story also quotes Sitler on how the fund increases the prospect of attracting productions with budgets of $5 and under and TV productions.

“That’s opposed to a $20 million or $30 million project, which would break the fund every year,” Sitler said. “By keeping the fund replenished, though, we can become a home for lots of smaller budgeted projects. And the beauty of those is they’ll hire more local crew members.

“Another thing I’ll say: the fact that (Sen. Norris) could do this in this economic climate is impressive.”

Read the full story here.

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