MADSEN AND BISHOP AT 2013 BNFF
(Friday, April 12th, 2013) Michael Madsen and Larry Bishop (both pictured at right) will screen the Quentin Tarantino production of Hellride at this years 2013 Buffalo Niagara Film Festival. The screening takes place this Sunday (4/14) at 1pm at the Market Arcade Cinemas in downtown Buffalo.
The BNFF is independently produced and curated by local producer Bill Cowell.
Hellride was written and directed by Bishop and starred both he and Madsen.
For more info on the BNFF: http://thebnff.com/
BATTLEDOGS SHOT IN BUFFALO NOW ON SYFY
(Tuesday, April 2nd, 2013) Don't miss Battledogs starring Dennis Haysbert, Craig Sheffer, Wes Studi, Ernie Hudson and more, airing throughout the month of April on the SyFy Network.
Shot primarily in Buffalo during September of 2012 featuring many local crew and extras, Battledogs is a Sci-Fi action film that shows what happens when a virus turns residents of Manhattan into werewolves and how a rogue army general tries to harness this virus as a weapon. Many familiar Buffalo landmarks double as New York City in this feature film.
Battledogs is yet another participant in Empire State Film Production Tax Credit Program.
GALLIVAN GETS W.N.Y. A BOOST IN TV AND FILM PRODUCTION
(Tuesday, March, 26th, 2013)New York State Senator Patrick M. Gallivan (R-C-I, Elma) announced today that after weeks of negotiating, the final enacted state budget will include a provision to boost the film production industry in upstate New York.
Currently, New York State provides a tax incentive for up to 30 percent of certain production costs, but Gallivan has long argued that upstate and its unique cities need something more to attract significant studio interest. “It’s all about costs, and one of the most prohibitive costs for film productions is labor. In New York State, most of the high-skilled labor associated with film production in based in New York City. The further away from New York City a production takes place, the more expensive it is to film. A universally applied tax credit doesn’t necessarily do much for Upstate,” Gallivan said. “This reform will really level the playing field so Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse and other upstate communities can attract bigger productions and the inherent jobs and economic benefit that come with them.”
The new tax credit creates a two-tiered system so that an additional 10 percent credit can be applied to the amount of wages or salaries paid to most individuals directly employed by a film production in the specified geographic area. This brings the total available credit in upstate counties to 40 percent without altering the total cost of the program for taxpayers.
“This is a very useful tool that will help upstate film commissions attract more production spending. It’s a direct response to people asking "why does more than $20 million dollars in production spending drive across state lines every year?” and "why did Draft Day choose Cleveland instead of Buffalo?,” said Nora Brown, Executive Director of the Rochester and Finger Lakes Film and Video Office.
“Upstate and Western New York miss out on some film opportunities because the current incentive structure doesn’t allow us to compete with neighboring states,” said Tim Clark, Commissioner of the Buffalo Niagara Film Commission. “This new tiered film tax credit program rectifies this inequity and will really put our region on the map when studios are evaluating shoot locations.”
For the purposes of this legislation, upstate counties have been identified as the following: Allegany, Broome, Cattaraugus, Cayuga, Chautauqua, Chemung, Chenango, Clinton, Cortland, Delaware, Erie, Essex, Franklin, Fulton, Genesee, Hamilton, Herkimer, Jefferson, Lewis, Livingston, Madison, Monroe, Montgomery, Niagara, Oneida, Onondaga, Ontario, Orleans, Oswego, Otsego, Schoharie, Schuyler, Seneca, St. Lawrence, Steuben, Tioga, Tompkins, Wayne, Wyoming, or Yates.A final state budget is expected to be passed before the end of the week. The new film production tax credit is modeled after legislation (S.498) authored by Senator Gallivan.
Senator Patrick M. Gallivan represents all or parts of Erie, Wyoming, Livingston and Monroe Counties in the New York State Senate.
LOCATION SPOTLIGHT: Dnipro Ukrainian Center
(Friday, March 8th, 2013) A lounge and social hall with a distinctive European flavor are all available for your next film in Buffalo with the Dnipro Ukranian Center just outside of Downtown on the East Side. Built in 1914 by German Businessmen, the club evolved to it's current style in 1955 when it was converted to a Ukranian American Community Center.
More Photos (Here)
History of the Dnipro at ForgottenBuffalo.com
NEW YORK LOUNGE AT SUNDANCE 2013
(January 29th, 2013) Each year the New York State Governor's Office for Motion Picture and Television Development creates a pop-up NY Lounge during the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, UT. This year's Lounge took over the Willie Holdman Gallery and used the unique space to feature NY State Location Images from the Buffalo/Niagara and Rochester/Finger Lakes regions in place of the art.
Every year this Lounge serves as a gathering point for many NY based film professionals and those with an interest in New York Production. Along with consuming New York State produced bagels, cider, and coffee, participants were able to see topical panel discussions, acoustic performances from New York Artists, and speak with New York State Regional Film Commissioners regarding the New York State Film Production Tax Credit and most importantly filming in New York State Locations.
The panel discussions are always heavily attended at the New York Lounge and feature the latest trends and business aspects of film production, with a special focus on New York State. In case you couldn't get out to Park City to see the panels, the New York State Film Office has them archived at their USTREAM channel of which you can find a detailed listing and links below:
1/21/13 Film Finance panelhttp://www.ustream.tv/recorded/28706381Experts from EP Financial Solutions and HSBC will discuss the aspects offilm production, film financing, and production incentive financing you need to know.MODERATOR: John Hadity, EP Financial Solutions1/20/13 Distribution Trends http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/28673382DESCRIPTION: This panel will feature players from both the traditional and emergingWorld of distribution who will discuss the unprecedented options for Filmmakers to createintegrated platforms tailored to achieve their unique goals.HOST/MODERATOR: Steven Beer - Franklin, Weinrib, Rudell & Vassallo (FWRV) 1/19/13 More Dollars on the Screen: Innovative Tools for Independent Filmmakershttp://www.ustream.tv/recorded/28634437A panel of filmmakers and post-production professionals, including active members of thePost New York Alliance (PNYA), looks into the current state of technological innovation forcinema, and how the latest advances can be used to make the most of today’s productionbudgets. From cameras to tax credits, new tools for filmmakers are appearing faster than youcan say “action.” This discussion will continue a real-world dialogue on how filmmakers cantake advantage of the newest resources to make the most of their budgets, to expand theiraudiences and to bring their stories to the screen.MODERATOR: Alex Halpern, filmmaker and founder/CEO of Post FactoryNY1/18/13 Empowerment Town Hall http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/28673382Welcoming industry professionals from both the creative and businessside of film, the Empowerment Town Hall will discuss community challenges, resources, andopportunities available for successful filmmaking in New York and beyond.
HOST/MODERATOR: Steven Beer - Franklin, Weinrib, Rudell & Vassallo (FWRV)
The New York lounge was sponsored this year by the New York Production Alliance, EP Financial Solutions, PostFactory, ARRI, HSBC, Franklin, Weinrib, Rudell & Vassallo (FWRV) and Mandarin Oriental.
The Buffalo Boardwalk Empire Connection
(December 17th, 2012) Patrick Gallo was born and raised in Buffalo. In the 1980s as one of the pioneering Buffalo Skateboarders in the Elmwood Village, Pat started to exercise his creativity through extreme sports, before performing in his first musical at Lafayette High School. It was there that his fate in the arts was sealed before heading off to The American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York City at age 19 to start his career.
As an actor he has guest starred on numerous shows including Cold Case, ER, NYPD Blue, & Reno 911. As an editor he is working with shows like The Simpsons, Glee, & Dollhouse. His most recent work has included a collaboration with Buffalo's 1derful films Phil Gangi, Peter Tasca, and Stephen Butler on a documentary which explores the Buffalo Bill's 1990's Superbowl Run, and also a guest appearance on this past season of Boardwalk Empire.
Patrick attributes growing up in Buffalo, spending time with the rich and deeply unique characters, inspiring architecture, and vibrant culture as something that he is terribly thankful for. He feels that it's a huge part of his identity as an artist.
BNFC -How'd you land the role?
PG - The casting director, Meridith Tucker became a fan of mine and kept reading me on numerous roles, determined to eventually find a place for me on the show. I read for 5 roles over a 6 months...booked my 6 read.
BNFC- Describe your role and approach to the character I believe he was only known as cousin Franco?
Yes, He was the only known cousin. Franco grew up on the docks, and the fishing trade was a big part of his life. My approach is the same as always, I find his tone in rehearsal, and let it naturally evolve.
PG- Why'd he get whacked? How did they bury you in the sand? He got whacked because he made Gyp feel inferior to him...as you know, it doesn't take much. The sand gag was done by digging a huge hole and placing a a large plastic container in it where I would sit. Then they cover the top with sand. For the actual shovel to head contact, they used a prosthetic they made of my head.
BNFC- What was your biggest takeway from this opportunity? Observations about the production that could translate to someone writing or producing episodic television?
PG- It's rare that you get to become a part of an acclaimed show that you actually watch and actually respect creatively...that's rare and I took from it nothing but how lucky I was to be a part it and getting the opportunity to work with people that are at the top of their game, from hair and makeup, to camera etc etc.
Almost a Dynasty-
BNFC- Talk about your participation in Almost a Dynasty? How did you get Scott Norwood and Bill Polian to participate?
PG - My participation in the film was to help out some guys who had a great idea, but no idea as how to execute a feature documentary.
BNFC- How did you get Scott Norwood and Bill Polian to participate?
PG- Bill Polian was involved through a favor of a good friend of mine who knows him very well...he was wonderful and very happy to be a part of it. Scott Norwood was basically a steal. We heard he was at an event, we went and hoped we could grab some footage...we were lucky enough to make it happen.
BNFC- Did any of the info in the interviews surprise you? If so what?
PG - Yes, it was all surprise to me as I am not a sports fan!
THE PASSING OF A FILM AND TELEVISION ICON
(December 6th, 2012) The man who spent over 50 years as President of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters Local 817 passed away last week in Long Island.
Thomas R. O’Donnell headed up the “Theatrical Teamsters” of New York until his retirement earlier this year. He oversaw many film and television projects in the Western New York region including “Bruce Almighty,” “The Natural,” “Unstoppable,” “Trains, Planes and Automobiles,” NBC’s “The Office” and countless other large productions.
He was credited with the revitalization of New York’s film industry and helping to recruit motion pictures to shoot in the Buffalo-Niagara area.
“Tom O’Donnell was a true friend to the Western New York film industry,” said Buffalo-Niagara Film Commissioner Tim Clark. “It was always his top priority to make sure that local Teamster members were hired first to work on any national projects that came through our town.”
Mr. O’Donnell’s son Tommy was elected earlier this year to replace his dad as President of Local 817. Tommy is a graduate of Saint Bonaventure University in Olean and has committed to follow in his father’s footsteps to help enlist major movie companies to shoot in Western New York State.
Our heartfelt condolences go out to the O’Donnell family and the members of the Theatrical Teamsters.
HALFWAY HOME W.N.Y. PREMIER:
Friday, January 18th, 2013 Seneca Niagara Events Center
(November 30th, 2012) U.S. Army Silver Star and Purple Heart recipient SSG Tommy Rieman, a Wounded Warrior from Charlotte, NC along with one of the most highly decorated Vietnam War Veterans in New York State Stephen T. Banko III of Buffalo; local businessmanand Vietnam War Purple Heart recipient Michael Militello, and Seneca Nation President Barry Snyder were on hand today at the Seneca Niagara Events Center to announce the Western New York premier of "HALFWAY HOME". The premier takes place Friday, January 18th, 2013, at Seneca Niagara Events Center.
One of the greatest challenges facing our men and women who served in the United States military are the effects of war known as Post Traumatic Stress Disorders (PTSD).
Finally, someone has documented and told of their plight in a dramatic, eye opening movie documentary called “HALFWAY HOME”, This Polaris Media film by Peabody Award –winning and Emmy – nominated Hollywood filmmaker Paul Freedman and narrated by Hollywood film and television star Martin Sheen, brings to the big screen the truth about what many of our war heroes face when they return home.
OFFICIAL SITE : http://www.halfwayhomethemovie.com/
VIDEO FROM PRESS CONFERENCE: http://youtu.be/bLuI7c_ycL
(PICTURED L-R: Stephen Banko III, Michael Militello, SSG Tommy Rieman, Seneca Nation President Barry Snyder, and JRC Promotions President Joseph Ciffa.)
BUBBLE GIRL FILMING BEGINS
(November 13th, 2012) Buffalo filmmaker Peter McGennis used the Dann Memorial Ice Rink at North Buffalo's Nichol's School to re-create a “Fall Classic” Squirt Major Championship for the opening scene of his new feature film entitled Bubble Girl this past Monday. Local 10-12 year old skaters simulated an overtime goal and an on-ice award ceremony.
Actress Abigail Hawk (who has been in TV series such as Blue Bloods, Law & Urder: SVU, Body of Proof, etc.) was on hand to play a Buffalo hockey mom in the scene along with several local actors. Hawk raved about our local food in an interview with WIVB-TV "The food has been remarkable. I have had sushi at Sea Bar. The beef on Weck was probably one of the greatest things I have ever had. And I come from New York, where sushi is really good, but this was my favorite sushi ever. Went to the Spot and had a cup of coffee and I tried the Chocolate Bar today. I've been enjoying the food; it's delicious."
“Bubble Girl” is the story of a young girl who overcomes a childhood illness with the help of an imaginary friend. The film pays respect to the kids and the caregivers over at Roswell Park Cancer Institute.
“Bubble Girl” is McGennis’s third installment of a trilogy of Buffalo tribute films entirely shot in Buffalo.
Supporting cast, crew, and vendors on "Bubble Girl" are all from Western N.Y..
A New Venue and an Awesome After-party for Premier Nov. 14
(October 26th, 2012) A premier in the heart of downtown Buffalo, and an after-party celebrating the music of the film is set for "Queen City". It all takes place November 14th, with a screening at the Dipson Market Arcade Cinemas at 7:30 PM followed by an All-Star Afterparty Blues Jam at the Tralf just across the street. "Queen City" is yet another Buffalo production participating in the New York State Film Production Credit program.
Message from Peter McGennis:
"There has been a change in the venue for our Queen City Film & Music Premiere on November 14th. We will be screening at The Market Arcade and having an After-Party Blues Jam with blues legend James Cotton, Toni Lynn Washington and Surprise Guests across the street at The Tralf. Tickets go on sale tomorrow at The Market Arcade for the screening to include The Tralf After-Party. A limitted amount of tickets are on sale now at The Tralf for just the Queen City After-Party Blues Jam. "Queen City" is set in 1980 Buffalo and follows two detectives and a jazz singer played by Vivica A. Fox. The film features blues icons Maria Muldaur, Susan Tedeschi, Magic Slim, James Cotton, Allen Toussaint, Sharon Jones and others all playing roles, performing original songs and placed in historic Buffalo locations. I look forward to celebrating what has been a three plus year labor of love that has passed through hundreds of local hands. It is a privilege to honor Buffalo and on screen and hope you can make it."
International Horror Fans Gather in Western New York
(Photo caption: Buffalo Screams Honorary Chairperson Debbie Rochon, Festival Founder Greg Lamberson, and Fangoria Magazine Editor Chris Alexander opening night at the Market Arcade Cinema)
(October 18th, 2012) The third annual Buffalo Screams Horror Film Festival opened last night at the Market Arcade Cinema in Downtown Buffalo. This event which has garnered an international following celebrates the horror film genre on multiple levels. Screams also highlights some of Western New York's finest talents including Lockport's Sam Qualiana and his latest creation "Snowshark: Ancient Snow Beat".
Buffalo Screams takes place at the Market Arcade Cinema located at 639 Main Street Buffalo, NY 14203 (716) 855-3022, now through this Sunday, October 21st, 2012.
For information be sure to visit the following links:
Official Site: http://www.buffaloscreams.com/
Lastest Coverage from M.Faust in Artvoice: http://artvoice.com/issues/v11n42/film_feature
WEREWOLVES IN BUFFALO: Ward's Island Wraps
(Photo caption: Stunt Person stand in's take a leap off of the Michigan Street Bridge, Niagara Falls International Airport serves as the backdrop for a Computer Generated Werewolf Invasion)
(October 9th, 2012) A brand new airport, a legendary art deco train terminal, and array of other choice location assets allowed Buffalo and Niagara Falls to represent New York City, paved the way for over a month of local production with werewolf thriller feature "Ward's Island". Outside of some key positions and celebrity talent, "Ward's Island" featured over 200 extras and a crew base that capitalized on paid talent entirely from Western New York. Look for Ward's Island on a screen near you in Spring of 2012.
LOCATION SPOTLIGHT: Colonel Ward Pumping Station
(August 24th, 2012) Like the structure that contains the Tate Modern in London, England, the Colonel Ward Pumping Station on Buffalo's Waterfront contains 5 works of art, in this case engineering art with 5 giant Holley Steam pumps built in 1915.
Throughout the world there are only 8 Holly Pumps remaining. The size and scope of the Colonel Ward Station came from a time when Buffalo was one of the Top 3 cities in the United States and needed a capacity to accommodate millions of people versus the remaining thousands we have today. In their heyday these pumps handled 30 Million Gallons per day per engine with 20' 30 ton flywheels which generated 1,200 HP. The plant currently operates electric pumps today that supply the City of Buffalo along side the 5 legendary pumps which serve as a reminder of Buffalo's tremendous past accomplishments.
The Colonel Ward plays a central role serving as a food rendering plant in the Troma Entertainment Release "Return to the Class of Nukem High" due out for release in 2013.
Photo Gallery (CLICK HERE)