This final C-U Blogfidential post of 2010 might seem a bit of a downer considering the non-festive nature of the material – trailers for movies about male antagonists who threaten or damage female protagonists that ultimately pull through at a price – but the reason to feature them now is because they serve as a timely exclamation point for the strides made this year with locally produced film. That said, not enough of an annual critical mass transpires in the C-U to warrant end-of-year awards or lists or any such thing – if you want to see what went down during the past 12 months, feel free to search and scroll – so, for the moment, a simple show-and-tell will do.

Finding Virginia Trailer from Pounded Pavement Productions on Vimeo.

We’re excited to preview this teaser trailer for the New York-produced, Decatur-filmed independent feature drama FINDING VIRGINIA even though we hated finding out about it and the newly launched Web site in second-hand fashion through Facebook chatter. Additional comments imply producers Thomas C. Cord and Stephanie Gold have finished editing it together which means festival submissions and preview screenings should happen shortly. VIRGINIA stars Jessica Alexandra Green as a single mother psychologically tormented by a devious abductor played by Jeff Kurysz; Brett Hays of Shatterglass Studios in Champaign helped manage the production and bring in Midwest crew while Kymberly Harris of TheatresCool in Bloomington aided with casting area talent. You may remember VIRGINIA from the article we ran in C-U Confidential issue 4 and we plan to continue our coverage as Pounded Pavement Productions strives to find the film an audience!

We also realized that we hadn’t yet posted the above trailer from AMBER ROSE, the C-U-filmed feature length movie written and directed by Mike Trippiedi who always has been happy to keep us abreast on his activities. It’s been available on our YouTube channel for a while but we’re presenting it here for completion’s sake. First-time screen actress Zoe Capps plays the title role, a precocious 11-year-old whose mother Lynn (Carolyn Kodes-Atkinson) works at a liquor store; both face double trouble when a brain-damaged man named Skip (Steven M. Keen) and his wife Judy (Amy Stoch) move in next door and Skip’s shady friend Gil (Joe Dempsey) comes calling. Originally written as a stage play that was deemed too disturbing by several theater groups according to Trippiedi, AMBER is produced by Traci Nally and Mark Roberts (Welcome to Tolono, TWO AND A HALF MEN) while long-time Trippiedi collaborator Bill Yauch served as cinematographer and editor as our man Larry E. Gates II cooked up his first movie score for the show. Following a successful sneak preview at the Art Theater in the fall, Shut Up & Do It Productions has been submitting AMBER ROSE to film festivals nationwide.

As twenty-ten drifts off into the history books, we hope that you and yours are having a memorable New Year’s experience and thank you for reading C-U Blogfidential. Here’s to a 2011 filled with life, love, progress, and further creation of the movies of Champaign, Urbana, and the cities beyond!

~ Jason Pankoke

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