On Thursday night the Dances With Films Film Festival presented filmmakers representing EIGHT films from this year’s fest, appearing together at the Chinese Theater, all within 1 hour, so that our news team was able to interview the directors, cast and crew, and subjects of the 8 films screening throughout the week- all together in one place, at one time, for both photos and interviews. The lineup included features, dramas, comedies, a documentary, and a pilot, including films making their world premieres, West Coast, and L.A. premieres, as well as some multiple award-winners!
Our News Crew: Doug Nolan, Margie Rey and Steve Taylor were all live on the red carpet- all in one night- for 8 World & Los Angeles Movie Premieres at the Dances With Films 26th Annual Film Festival. Left to Right: Doug, Margie, and Steve who did interviews with Producers, Directors, and actors from 8 films, watched the movies and then Celebrated in the private invite only after-parties with everyone from the movie:
In this psychological thriller, Vivian Ashwood (Elizabeth Paige, Modern Love) is failing to cope after a tragic loss. Struggling to raise her daughter Bibi (Judith Ann DiMinni), she turns to prescription drugs and alcohol to soothe her anxieties and depression. Soon, the lines begin to blur between Vivian’s routine nightmare and her reality. A strange man begins stalking Vivian, causing her to unravel even further. Bibi, also devastated by the loss of her sister and upset at Vivian for not protecting them both, only makes Vivian more unsure of the truth. After continuous torment, Vivian searches for a way to protect herself and Bibi from the stalker by whatever means necessary. Those from Bibi that were there in person were:
Christopher Beatty (DIR/SCR/PROD)
Elizabeth Paige (CAST)
Judith Ann DiMinni (CAST)
Rick Zahn (CAST)
Logan Hunter (PROD/CAST)
Jaime Badaan (EXEC PROD)
Nik Belcevich (Co-PROD)
Nic DiPierro (Co-PROD)
Ian Ziering (friend of production)
In the below photos Margie & Steve are in the center with the 2 lead stars of this movie, with on the left: Elizabeth Paige who plays Vivian Ashwood, and on the right: Judith Ann DiMinni who plays Bibi:
The after-party for the World Premier of Bibi was at the historic Hollywood Landmark: Yamashiro Gardens, that was just north by 5 minutes of the Chinese Theatre, in the Hollywood Hills next to The Magic Castle.
The name Yamashiro translates as “Mountain Palace” in Japanese. In 1911, the Bernheimer brothers began construction of the hilltop mansion to house their priceless collection of Asian treasures. Hundreds of craftsmen were brought from the Orient to recreate the replica of a palace located in the “Yamashiro” province mountains near Kyoto, Japan. Yamashiro sits 250 feet above Hollywood Boulevard and was completed in 1914:
One of the main attractions at Yamashiro Gardens since its 1911-1914 completion has been its gardens. The Japanese style gardens dominate the grounds surrounding the restaurant with plant species imported from Japan. The original garden design included a tea houses, pavilions, aviaries and a miniature replica of a Japanese village. The open air courtyard still sits in the middle of Yamashiro, only now with a pond and several koi fish that are approximately 60 years old:
In the late 1920s, Yamashiro was briefly home to the 400 Club, an exclusive gathering of A-list celebrities from the Golden Age of Hollywood. One rumor even said that Yamashiro was a brothel during the Roaring Twenties. During the Great Depression, tours of the Yamashiro gardens were offered for 25 cents. Some of the more unique plants you’ll find in the gardens are bonsai trees, Korean grass, Japanese pines and creeping cypress. All Yamashiro Gardens guests love to explore their history.
Our TV news crew were all invited to the private After-Party at Yamashiro Gardens, where we were lucky enough to share an amazing dinner with the friendly Producers, Director, and cast of the Movie Bibi, in a private room, where they served us many of their gourmet signature food items from their menu. From this room we had an amazing views of their gardens, and breathtaking views of Hollywood and most of the city:
In the below photo Left to Right- having a great experience at Yamashiro Gardens are TV Producer: Steve Taylor, TV Show Host/News Reporter: Margie Rey, and Producer, Reporter, Editor, Cameraman: Doug Nolan. This will be a very special experience that we will always remember:
The Girl in the Backseat made its world premiere Saturday, July 1.
Inspired by true events, the film follows a young immigrant who is catfished and kidnapped in Los Angeles. She is then taken by force on a road trip across the state by her captor, who is part of a brutal human trafficking ring. Now she must do what she can to get into her captor’s head to find a way to escape. Those from this movie that were there in person: Nick Laurant (DIR/PROD)
Chris Marrone (Co-SCR/PROD/CAST)
Kika Magalhães (Co-SCR/PROD/CAST)
Below is photo of this special group holding up their movie poster on the red carpet:
Glue Trap made its world premiere Thursday, June 29.
A couple a few years into a strained relationship take a weekend trip to a friend’s cabin to recapture their romance. While finding themselves in awkward situation after situation, hurting each other’s feelings and not feeling understood or heard, it seems as though it’s all going to head toward an inevitable breakup. Then an eccentric young woman appears who had no idea anyone was staying at her family’s cabin. No problem if she crashes, right? As the couple struggles to juggle this interloper on top of their already tense dynamic, they begin to worry this obnoxious third wheel may threaten more than their relationship. The cast who were there in person:
Justin Geldzahler (DIR/SCR/PROD)
Isaac W. Jay (CAST)
Alex Warheit (CAST)
Norris Guncheon (PROD/ED)
The below photo is of the cast holding up their movie poster on the red carpet, and below that is of Margie & Doug interviewing 2 of them:
Heightened made its world premiere Friday, June 23.
The dramatic comedy centers on social anxiety and OCD-riddled Nora (Sara Friedman) who returns to Maine following a mental breakdown to live with her emotionally distant parents (Sarah Clarke and Xander Berkeley). While she undergoes court-ordered psychiatric treatment, Nora’s world is further upended when she is assigned to volunteer at a local state park. Her awkward assignment actually shows promise when her anxiety subsides in the company of her new supervisor Dusty (Dave Register), who is dealing with crippling issues of his own. Maybe Nora and Dusty can help each other overcome the obstacles their socially complicated world presents to them. The cast who were there in person:
Sara Friedman (DIR/SCR/CAST)
John Hermann (PROD)
Matt Ratner (EXEC PROD)
Mitch Mitchell (CAST)
Jody McColman (CAST)
Katie’s Mom made its world premiere Sunday, July 2.
KATIE’S MOM is a heartfelt comedy influenced by THE GRADUATE, but told from the perspective of a protagonist inspired by Mrs. Robinson. Set in modern-day Pasadena, California, KATIE’S MOM is about Nancy Rosenfeld (Dina Meyer (DETECTIVE KNIGHT; STARSHIP TROOPERS, SAW), a nurturing mom and recent divorcée, whose beloved Jewish/Christmas mashup holiday celebration with her adult children is derailed when she falls for Alex Rojas (Aaron Dominguez (Only Murders in the Building), her daughter’s charming new boyfriend. Their electrifying affair upends her status quo and sets her on a path to becoming the woman she was meant to be. The cast who were there in person: Tyrrell Shaffner (DIR/SCR)
Meryl Branch-McTiernan (SCR/PROD)
Aakash Raj (DP)
Aaron Dominguez (CAST)
Shannon Dee (CAST)
Julia Tolchin (CAST)Clara York (CAST)
Jade Ramirez (CAST)
Remixed made its world premiere Saturday, July 1.
The pilot follows Liz, pregnant and at an all-time low, who is confused about her marriage and falling back into irresponsible habits, who finds a box with a bunch of CDs her brother recorded 15 years ago before his death with instructions for her and two friends to go on a bucket list treasure hunt. While honoring the wishes of their late brother and friend, they might just find themselves going beyond checking off doing silly and embarrassing tasks sent from the great beyond to rediscovering their love for each other, and possibly addressing some unhealthy coping mechanisms too. The cast who were there in person: Mitch Yapko (DIR/PROD)
Lauren Leon (Co-SCR/PROD/CAST)
Frank Leon (Co-SCR/PROD/ED)
Waiting For the Light to Change screened on Wednesday, June 28.
The Grand Jury Prize winner at Slamdance this year, the thoughtful drama follows a group of high school friends reuniting for a weekend trip to a lake house after they have gone to college. The reunion sets the stage for a maelstrom of emotions for each of them as they deal with sorting through attractions to each other, as well as suppressing old resentments, jealousies and desires before they leave. The cast who were there in person:
Linh Tran (DIR/Co-SCR)
Jake Rotger (PROD)
Joyce Ha (CAST)
You Have No Idea screened on Saturday, July 1.
The audience favorite documentary focuses on a mother and family who rally around her son and their brother after he is diagnosed with Autism in the early 90s. At that time, doctors offered no practical advice for daily living and advised the mom to limit his social interactions. Rejecting these notions, she set out to provide her son with a life filled with purpose and friendship. This heartfelt film is a sweet testament to the power of love and community by profiling a determined mom advocating for her son. The cast who were there in person: Alexander Jeffery (DIR/SCR/PROD/DP/ED)
Paul Petersen (PROD/ED)