STORY WRITTEN BY BRIAN BINGAMAN
@brianbingaman on Twitter
It’s a red carpet debut for the Pottstown In Focus Short Film Festival, taking place June 6-10.
Events going on throughout town include screenings and festivities like a Trivia Night, event after-parties and a presentation by actor Dartel McRae of “Boardwalk Empire,” “Celebrity Ghost Stories” and ABC’s “Black Box.”
Besides keeping the films at a half-hour long or less, the only other rule for filmmakers is that each submission must contain some reference to Pottstown. Categories are comedy, fiction, science fiction, music video, documentary and “A Love Letter to Pottstown.” Besides monetary awards for first and second prize in each category, there will also be a special technical excellence prizes, such as best film by a student 18 or younger.
Pottstown’s assistant borough manager, Erica Batdorf, said in a prepared statement: “We are hopeful that this event will spark interest in continued improvements and promote a sense of borough pride. It’s unique and there is something for everyone.”
This should be an adventure. What’s the schedule of events?
June 6: Opening Night is held at Montgomery County Community College West Campus’ University Center, 101 College Drive. Categorical submissions will be shown and filmmakers will speak about their entries. The party features a movie theater popcorn bar, live music from The Cordilia Arcay Jazz Quartet and a Sly Fox beer tasting. RSVP at the Pottstown In Focus Facebook page. The after-party is at the Brick House, 152 E. High St.
June 7: An Outdoor Screening, in coordination with the Schuylkill Sojourn landing in Pottstown, is held at the amphitheater in Riverfront Park, 140 College Drive. Besides a select featured film, categorical submissions may also be shown. Food will be for sale from the Sunflower Café food truck. Enjoy a performance preceding the screening at 6 p.m. by Philadelphia musician Bronson Tennis and de Tiera Caliente. Bring your own seating.
June 8: In between screenings of submissions at Connections on High, 238 E. High St., an emcee will coordinate a trivia contest with prizes donated by local merchants. Bring a team. The after-party is at the Manatawny Still Works, 320 Circle of Progress Drive, Suite 104.
June 9: Dartel McRae, who grew up a few blocks away from the Hill School, makes a Rising Star Appearance at the Hill School Center of the Arts. McRae will talk about the feature film he’s producing about growing up in Pottstown called “Intermission.” Most of it’s going be shot in the borough. McRae will also show a collection of his work and discuss the filmmaking process from an actor’s perspective. RSVP at the Pottstown In Focus Facebook page. The after-party will be at Jack Cassidy’s Irish Pub, 990 E. High St.
June 10: It’s a bit of Hollywood on High Street with the festival Awards Celebration at Steel River Playhouse, 245 E. High St. See the winning films at a bistro party with Sly Fox beer, Manatawny Still Works cocktails and food from downtown dining establishments. RSVP at the Pottstown In Focus Facebook page.
Visit www.pottstowninfocus.com for more information.