Gettin’ ‘Boggy’ with it

Gettin’ ‘Boggy’ with it

Pamula Pierce Barcelou has gained copyright to one of her father Charles B. Pierce’s most beloved films, “The Legend of Boggy Creek,” and is having the movie restored for a future re-release, she said.

Shot in the early 1970s in a docudrama style, “The Legend of Boggy Creek” became a cult hit for Pierce, a longtime Texarkana resident who also directed “The Town That Dreaded Sundown” and other independent feature films.

“The Legend of Boggy Creek” chronicles the based-on-real-life encounters between Fouke-area residents and the Fouke Monster—a shaggy, Bigfoot-esque creature said to roam the nearby woods and swampy waterways.

Barcelou said Steve Ledwell of Ledwell & Son assigned her copyright of both “Boggy Creek” and another Pierce film, “Bootleggers.” Ledwell’s father, L.W., helped finance “The Legend of Boggy Creek,” which found success as a low-budget, drive-in creature feature.

“The Legend of Boggy Creek” is being restored at the George Eastman Museum in New York and, for the first time since it was released, the movie will be appear as it did during its theatrical release, unlike bootleg versions out there now, Barcelou said.

“We have a clean, clear beautiful print that is being remastered,” Barcelou said, noting various elements have been brought together to make the restored version, including negatives from a Technicolor office in Burbank, Calif.

Barecelou said she aims to release “Boggy Creek” on Blu-ray and also bring it back to movie theaters after working on the sound. She’d like to hold a “Charles B. Pierce-style” premiere at the Perot Theatre.

Arkansas filmmaker Charles B. Pierce is pictured in this 1983 file photo by the Texarkana Gazette. Film posters of two of his films, “Bootleggers” and “The Legend of Boggy Creek,” can be seen on the wall behind him. Pierce died in March 2010, and his daughter, Pamula Pierce Barcelou, has gained the copyright to “The Legend of Boggy Creek” and is having the movie restored for a future re-release, she said. (File photo)

Arkansas filmmaker Charles B. Pierce is pictured in…

“We will also be re-releasing theatrically,” said Barcelou, noting she’s gone back and forth to Rochester, N.Y., where the restoration work is being completed, to see the project’s progress. This will make the film look how it was meant to appear, she said, adding that “Boggy Creek” fans have long requested this type of clear version being made available.

“I saw it up on the big screen for the first time in 45 years and it made me cry,” Barcelou said, noting the restoration and remastering work will help the colors pop in the swamp scenes, for example.

Kyle Alvut, who manages the digital part of film preservation services for the George Eastman Museum, said they’re taking analog elements and turning them into digital content to produce Blu-rays and high-definition copies, basically preparing the movie for that sort of distribution.

“Just like it would be a brand-new movie,” Alvut said. They’ve received a few elements and are sorting through them before deciding the best way to reconform to the original movie. It’s the kind of work they do to restore movies made a century ago.

“They’re original prints, original negatives she’s finding,” Alvut said of Barcelou’s project to acquire these elements. It’s a process of selecting and evaluating, scanning and restoring. What they’ll end up with is a digital source master, he said.

About a local premiere, Barcelou said, “I’ll make it a great big event for Texarkana.” She’s worked on this project for the past three years, tracking down elements to be restored and acquiring copyright.

“This will be the first release since the theatrical release in ’73 that is using pristine elements,” Barcelou said.

She plans to dedicate this “Boggy Creek” re-release to Ledwell, too. “I’m very humbled and honored that Steve entrusted their preservation to me,” she said. “These films would have been lost forever had Steve not assigned me these rights.”

Michael McCormack of the Brooklyn, N.Y.-based entertainment and intellectual property firm Drew Patrick Law worked with Barcelou on the copyright issue. He said Ledwell “very generously” assigned copyright to Barcelou.

“We were ecstatic that he worked with us completing that process,” McCormack said. He said there were various companies through which Ledwell’s father and Barcelou’s father were in business together, so they had to follow the chain to establish ownership.

“It was clear to us that Steve was the individual that had the rights to assign to us the copyright,” McCormack said.

http://www.texarkanagazette.com/news/texarkana/story/2018/aug/01/gettin-boggy-it/736988/

MoviePass app listings for many Bay Area…

MoviePass app listings for many Bay Area…

It may not have been the final curtain call for MoviePass on Monday, but listings for many Bay Area theaters in its subscription-based movie-going app went dark for hours Monday afternoon before they were restored as the company and its owner faced deep financial woes.

Subscribers took to social media on Monday afternoon to complain that MoviePass showed no movie listings in its local theaters in and around the Bay Area.

The MoviePass mobile app showed no listings Monday afternoon for AMC Mercado 20, CineArts at Santana Row in San Jose and AMC Eastridge 15 in East San Jose — despite all three theaters operating and screening multiple movies on Monday, according to their websites.

By nearly 6 p.m., the listings had returned to the MoviePass app for those and other Bay Area theaters.

MoviePass did show listings Monday afternoon, however, for four Landmark movie theaters in the South Bay. Landmark Theaters and MoviePass signed a deal in March, where MoviePass would be integrated into Landmark Theaters’ ticketing system, according to Variety.

Employees at Landmark’s Aquarius Theatre in Palo Alto and Guild Theatre in Menlo Park told this news organization people continued using the MoviePass app to obtain tickets for movies Monday.

Other Landmark theaters across the country also showed movie listings on the MoviePass app Monday, according to Deadline.

MoviePass did not immediately respond to a request for comment from this news organization.

MoviePass’ temporarily empty listings for other theater chains extended beyond the Bay Area and into New York, Pennsylvania and North Carolina, according to multiple media outlets.

MoviePass’ three million-plus subscribers have paid a fixed amount per month — currently the price is $9.95 — in exchange for tickets to watch one movie a day in theaters. The business model disrupted the movie theater industry, with Bay Area-based subscribers and independent movie theaters lauding the service for transforming the movie-going experience into a more accessible one and increasing attendance.

Despite the support, MoviePass’ financial prospects grew dire in the past few days. Last Thursday, MoviePass’ parent company Helios and Matheson borrowed $6.2 million from Hudson Bay Capital Management in order to restore its services and continue to “pay the company’s merchant and fulfillment processors,” according to its SEC filing.

MoviePass CEO Mitch Lowe, in a note to subscribers on Friday, said that “temporary outage” was a back-end issue, which was taken care of.

“MoviePass’ mission is to make moviegoing accessible to everyone and to enhance the power of discovery – but we need your support as we refine our model for the long-haul,” wrote Lowe.

Lowe, in a meeting on Monday, said that newly released movies like “Mission Impossible: Fallout” and upcoming blockbusters like “Christopher Robin” and “The Meg” will not be available on MoviePass, according to Business Insider.

Helios and Matheson’s share price has continued to plummet. Its stock closed Monday at 80 cents — a 60 percent decline from Friday’s closing price.

Last Wednesday, Helios and Matheson underwent a reverse stock split where 250 shares were exchanged for a single share to inflate the stock price per share to around $20 rather than 8 and a half cents — where the stock price sat before the reverse split took effect. But the plan didn’t mollify investors, and the stock has shed most of its value since then.

MoviePass app listings for many Bay Area theaters went dark for awhile on Monday

MoviePass app listings for many Bay Area theaters went dark for awhile on Monday

MoviePass app listings for many Bay Area theaters went dark for awhile on Monday

It may not have been the final curtain call for MoviePass on Monday, but listings for many Bay Area theaters in its subscription-based movie-going app went dark for hours Monday afternoon before they were restored as the company and its owner faced deep financial woes.

Subscribers took to social media on Monday afternoon to complain that MoviePass showed no movie listings in its local theaters in and around the Bay Area.

The MoviePass mobile app showed no listings Monday afternoon for AMC Mercado 20, CineArts at Santana Row in San Jose and AMC Eastridge 15 in East San Jose — despite all three theaters operating and screening multiple movies on Monday, according to their websites.

By nearly 6 p.m., the listings had returned to the MoviePass app for those and other Bay Area theaters.

MoviePass did show listings Monday afternoon, however, for four Landmark movie theaters in the South Bay. Landmark Theaters and MoviePass signed a deal in March, where MoviePass would be integrated into Landmark Theaters’ ticketing system, according to Variety.

Employees at Landmark’s Aquarius Theatre in Palo Alto and Guild Theatre in Menlo Park told this news organization people continued using the MoviePass app to obtain tickets for movies Monday.

Other Landmark theaters across the country also showed movie listings on the MoviePass app Monday, according to Deadline.

MoviePass did not immediately respond to a request for comment from this news organization.

MoviePass’ temporarily empty listings for other theater chains extended beyond the Bay Area and into New York, Pennsylvania and North Carolina, according to multiple media outlets.

MoviePass’ three million-plus subscribers have paid a fixed amount per month — currently the price is $9.95 — in exchange for tickets to watch one movie a day in theaters. The business model disrupted the movie theater industry, with Bay Area-based subscribers and independent movie theaters lauding the service for transforming the movie-going experience into a more accessible one and increasing attendance.

Despite the support, MoviePass’ financial prospects grew dire in the past few days. Last Thursday, MoviePass’ parent company Helios and Matheson borrowed $6.2 million from Hudson Bay Capital Management in order to restore its services and continue to “pay the company’s merchant and fulfillment processors,” according to its SEC filing.

MoviePass CEO Mitch Lowe, in a note to subscribers on Friday, said that “temporary outage” was a back-end issue, which was taken care of.

“MoviePass’ mission is to make moviegoing accessible to everyone and to enhance the power of discovery – but we need your support as we refine our model for the long-haul,” wrote Lowe.

Lowe, in a meeting on Monday, said that newly released movies like “Mission Impossible: Fallout” and upcoming blockbusters like “Christopher Robin” and “The Meg” will not be available on MoviePass, according to Business Insider.

Helios and Matheson’s share price has continued to plummet. Its stock closed Monday at 80 cents — a 60 percent decline from Friday’s closing price.

Last Wednesday, Helios and Matheson underwent a reverse stock split where 250 shares were exchanged for a single share to inflate the stock price per share to around $20 rather than 8 and a half cents — where the stock price sat before the reverse split took effect. But the plan didn’t mollify investors, and the stock has shed most of its value since then.

MoviePass app listings for many Bay Area theaters went dark for awhile on Monday

Ida Grove Receives Grant To Aid With Final Pieces Of Restoration At King Theatre

Ida Grove Receives Grant To Aid With Final Pieces Of Restoration At King Theatre

The community of Ida Grove rallied together in 2015 to work on renovating and restoring their historic theater, and has now received a shot in the arm from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR). The city has received an $8,750 grant from the DNR’s Derelict Building Grant program to help complete the final stages of the restoration of the 1914 King Theatre. Unable to keep pace with the upgrades necessary for digital films, the previous owner closed the business in 2010. At a community meeting in 2015, county residents banded together and began the fundraising needed to restore the building and install the necessary equipment. It is anticipated the newly refurbished theater will reopen in November of this year. The Derelict Building Grant program awarded grants to 12 small rural Iowa communities in 2018 to assist with the deconstruction or renovation of abandoned structures. They will help with the removal of asbestos and limit construction and demolition materials from going into area landfills. Since the first round of awards in 2011, the program has diverted more than 48,000 tons of construction and demolition materials and removed more than 1,000 tons of asbestos-containing materials. Just short of $400,000 will be awarded this year.

https://www.1380kcim.com/news/2018/ida-grove-receives-grant-to-aid-with-final-pieces-of-restoration-at-king-theatre/

Music and Theater: The Maine community I know

Music and Theater: The Maine community I know

Andrew Harris said the last time David Mallett performed at DeerTrees Theatre in Harrison was about 20 years ago. Mr. Harris, DeerTrees’ Artistic and Executive Director, was speaking to the July 21 audience — including me — waiting to hear a live concert from “David Mallett and Friends,” with Michael Burd (bass), Robby Coffin (guitar), Roy Clark (keyboard) and Susan Ramsey (violin, viola, background vocals).

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Andrew Harris said the last time David Mallett performed at DeerTrees Theatre in Harrison was about 20 years ago. Mr. Harris, DeerTrees’ Artistic and Executive Director, was speaking to the July 21 audience — including me — waiting to hear a live concert from “David Mallett and Friends,” with Michael Burd (bass), Robby Coffin (guitar), Roy Clark (keyboard) and Susan Ramsey (violin, viola, background vocals).

DeerTrees is among unique theaters, movie houses, Grange halls, and churches throughout Maine, given facelifts and renewed purpose for showcasing quality performing artists. In my experience, hearing of these places is mostly through word of mouth, social media, and weekly newspapers.

I spoke by phone this week with Andrew Harris. He said DeerTrees was a dream fulfilled in 1936 for “prominent opera singer Enrica Clay Dillon.” Built “on an old deer run,” using local timber, the 350-seat theatre was the acoustic equal of the best theaters in New York City. Ethel Barrymore, Tallulah Bankhead, Edward Everett Horton, Dame Mae Whitty, and Rudy Vallee are among the distinguished artists appearing at DeerTrees.

“All [Ms. Dillon’s] friends were from the acting world, or Broadway, or Hollywood,” Harris said.

In the 1954 Bing Crosby movie, “White Christmas,” a barn in Vermont becomes a playhouse. The barn door is slid open to reveal snow falling outdoors. DeerTrees had something to do with that.

DeerTrees has a sliding barn door backstage “so you didn’t have to paint any scenery,” Harris said. “You could just look out at the Maine countryside. Word traveled from DeerTrees to the west coast — where a film studio was making “White Christmas” — that there actually did exist a theater in New England that had this feature, and therefore, the making of the film was justified,” Harris said.

Decades passed. DeerTrees fell dormant. The Town of Harrison took ownership. In the 1980s, word spread of local officials torching the old theater for firefighter training. Dr. Allan Mills stopped it. Afterwards, a nonprofit was formed to restore DeerTrees to its full glory.

Andrew Harris joined DeerTrees 2011 when, he said, “very little had been done to maintain the building. The theater was in debt and in a bad financial way. It was my responsibility to get it back on track. We’ve managed that, and to improve and expand programming every year since 2011,” he said.

In addition to fine music, DeerTrees has a robust theater production schedule.

“Maine is full of great visual artists, great musicians, and richly strong professional actors and theater practitioners,” Harris said. “We create theater from the community I know.”

A Professor and Chair of Theater at the University of Southern Maine, Harris said, “I get access to students, and colleagues who are professionals, and students who want to work in the theater. We use [DeerTrees] as kind of an informal training ground for the theater degree at USM.”

What would Andrew say to a potential Piscataquis County audience?

He said, “Everyone’s busy. I’m a great believer that you don’t have to travel great distances to have a complete break. You can drive 100 miles and stay at a bed-and-breakfast, enjoy a nice restaurant, and hear some live music. A two-night stay could give three really enjoyable days. A lot of people don’t know what Maine’s western mountains area is like.

“I’ve been up to Dover-Foxcroft,” continued Harris. “There’s different features, different looks. I think everyone, perhaps, gets a little complacent about what they’ve got. But you can be someplace completely different [and] find a new restaurant, a new pub, and at DeerTrees, experience a concert” inside or outdoors on a Maine night.

Harris dismisses the idea of live streaming a DeerTrees concert.

“I think we all got too used to: ‘You can watch it on a DVD.’ For a little effort you can get an even bigger reward,” he said.

I can’t argue with that.

Learn more about DeerTrees at http://www.deertrees-theatre.org

Scott K. Fish has served as a communications staffer for Maine Senate and House Republican caucuses, and was communications director for Senate President Kevin Raye. He founded and edited AsMaineGoes.com and served as director of communications/public relations for Maine’s Department of Corrections until 2015. He is now using his communications skills to serve clients in the private sector.

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Music and Theater: The Maine community I know

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