The Albuquerque Movie Competition kicks off the summer time with a screening of The Cool College

This year’s festival promises to be as exciting and surprising as the last two years, with incredible films and people from New Mexico and around the world. –Rich Henrich

Although the Albuquerque Film Festival doesn’t kick off until later this summer, August 18-21, Festival Director and Founder of Film 4 Change, Rich Henrich, kicks off the season on June 7 with the presentation of a notable film called The Cool School as part of “Savor Albuquerques” series of events.

Why the cool school? “Film 4 Change aims to present films and related arts that celebrate the history and art of being human. The story of The Cool School is a prime example of how creativity, through a commitment to the arts and perseverance of vision, makes change and impacts the economy. The fact that a world famous artist like Larry Bell featured in the film is ready to share his perspectives and stories about how this group of artists created the scene in Los Angeles is a great opportunity for all of us to who are committed to the continued growth of the arts in Albuquerque, ”says Henrich. (Larry Bell divides the time between LA and his Taos studio).

About The Cool School: From 1957 to 1966, the Ferus Gallery was the catalyst of modern art in Los Angeles. Ferus started the careers of luminaries like Warhol, Ruscha and Lichtenstein, built an art scene from scratch and changed the cultural climate of the west coast.

The Cool School also includes commentary from two other famous New Mexican transplant artists / actors who are also very close to the festival – the late Dennis Hopper and Dean Stockwell. Hopper received the AFF Lifetime Achievement Award in 2009. Last year, in 2010, Henrich did not award the award due to Hopper’s death on May 29th and renamed it The Dennis Lee Hopper Award in his honor. The award recognizes excellence in film and the related arts and is presented to an individual with a persistent vision that reflects the independent spirit of Dennis Lee Hopper. This year Henrich is pleased to announce that Dean Stockwell, a close friend of the late Dennis Hopper and Larry Bell, has been selected as the 2011 award winner.

“We are delighted that Mr. Stockwell has agreed to accept this award, and we plan to show a retrospective of his work, including his personal favorite, Married to the Mob, for which he was nominated for an Oscar, and David Lynch’s Blue Velvet, the he stars alongside Dennis Hopper. This year’s festival promises to be as exciting and surprising as the last two years, “says Henrich,” with incredible films and people from New Mexico and around the world. “

We’re also adding some genre films and we’re excited to show The Dead Inside, a supernatural zombie musical that is sure to be entertained. We will be showing films at The Guild, The Kimo, The Cell and the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino ABQ, a producing sponsor of the Albuquerque Film Festival and host hotel for our panels, workshops and parties. Todd Jefferson, director of Marvel Games, will return to AFF to host his popular panel on games, comics, and movies, and to share insights from the ComiCon.

In workshops, technical aspects of filmmaking from the camera to post-production as well as screenwriting, social media marketing and film financing are dealt with. In the panels, Hollywood insiders, agents, executives and an actor panel yet to be announced will be moderated by a very special guest.

“We’re also excited to announce that Reservoir Dogs’ popular actor Michael Madsen will be attending the festival in August, and we’re excited to announce our opening film, Amigo, written and directed by John Sayles and with Chris Cooper in the lead role. As part of our film series on art and creativity, we are also showing Philip Pearlstein: Naked Vision, a documentary about the controversial artist who has devoted himself to nude painting for over 60 years. The art and culture critic Dave Hickey will hold a discussion after the film. The rest of our program is still in its early stages. The next deadline for submitting narrative features, documentaries, short films, music videos and multimedia projects is June 5th and the last deadline is June 30. ”

For more information on upcoming events, submissions, volunteering, or participating in this year’s festival, as well as more information on the screening of The Cool School, Larry Bell, Dennis Hopper, and Dean Stockwell, please visit http://www.ABQfilmfestival.com or find us Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/abqfilmfestival for the latest updates.

Event: Albuquerque Film Festival and Savor Albuquerque Present

The Cool School – Followed by Q&A with artist Larry Bell

When: Tuesday, June 7, 2011, 7 p.m.

Where: Kimo Theater, 423 Central Avenue Northwest,

Albuquerque, NM 87102

Tickets: Fundraiser for Film 4 Change and the Albuquerque Film Festival, open to the public with a donation proposal at the box office.

About Film4Change and the Albuquerque Film Festival:

Film 4 Change’s mission is to transform the community through the power of story, laughter, art and music. We produce, promote and showcase socially conscious media and present an annual film and related arts festival celebrating the art of being human and the craft of the artist and storyteller. At Film 4 Change we believe that stories shape and change who we are and what we do individually and collectively. We strive to work with filmmakers, storytellers, artists, musicians and change makers to create a more tolerant and compassionate world through educational workshops, lectures, demonstrations and responsible use of community resources while sharing the unique character of the Southwest on screen and printing on stage.

In its third year, the Albuquerque Film Festival is establishing itself as a premier festival that represents diversity, innovation and creative achievement in film. Their program includes art exhibitions, one-act plays, music, comedy and exciting workshops and panels with industry leaders and of course many great films as well as parties and unforgettable personalities. The festival looks for science fiction, comedy, fantasy, animation, documentaries (especially lost technology and conspiracy theories),

Music documents, webisodes and TV pilots.

For media inquiries, please contact Wendi Gelfound, Marketing Director, Albuquerque Film Festival at: marketing (at) abqfilmfestival (dot) com

or call 575-770-2895.

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