Screen scene: Local film news

ALL SMILES: Maryedith Burrell and Steven Samuels rehearse Burrell's one-woman show, "#OUCH! An Accidental Comedy,” in 2014. The acclaimed screenwriter and actress leads a workshop on writing for TV and film on May 7 at NYS3. Photo courtesy of Steven Samuels

• On Friday, April 29, from 4 to 5:30 p.m., the Oakley/South Asheville Library hosts Anime and Art Afternoon, featuring a screening of Summer Wars. The 2009 anime film from director Mamoru Hosoda (The Girl Who Leapt Through Time) is rated PG. It follows Kenji, a teenage misfit who spends most of his time hanging out in the all-powerful, online community called OZ until Natsuki, the girl of his dreams, convinces him to pose as her fiancé at her family reunion. Meanwhile, a late-night email containing a cryptic mathematic riddle leads to the unleashing of a rogue AI intent on using the virtual world of OZ to destroy the actual planet. As Armageddon looms, Kenji and his new “family” set aside their differences and unite to save both worlds. Art supplies and pizza will also be provided. Free for kids in sixth grade and up.

• NYS3: The Meisner Acting Conservatory for the Southeast will be the site of an intensive workshop taught by acclaimed screenwriter Maryedith Burrell on Saturday, May 7, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The workshop is intended for anyone interested in the basics of writing for TV and film and will cover three-act dramatic structure, cinematic vocabulary and the power of picture.

Burrell is an Emmy- and Golden Globe-nominated screenwriter who has worked with Ron Howard, Francis Ford Coppola and Tim Burton and done projects for Disney and Pixar. The successful actor and comedian began her performance career improvising with The Groundlings and The Second City, collaborating with Steve Martin, Andy Kaufman, Larry David, Robin Williams, Tina Fey and Jon Stewart. She then went on to roles in “Seinfeld,” “Fridays,” “Saturday Night Live,” “Home Improvement” and the early-’90s iteration of “Parenthood,” in which she acted alongside a young Leonardo DiCaprio.

The cost of the workshop is $100. Spaces are limited, so early online registration is encouraged.

• With less than 10 hours to go before the end of its Kickstarter campaign, Mechanical Eye Microcinema met its goal of raising $6,850 on Sunday, April 17. Had the amount not been reached, the organizers would not have received any of the donated funds. The project’s success means all of the money — a total of $6,963 was given before the campaign concluded — will go toward creating a permanent community filmmaking home in the Asheville Area Art Council’s The Refinery Creator Space and building a resource library that will include 16 mm and Super 8 cameras, editors, rewinds, splicers, viewers, an animation stand and an ongoing collection of digital media tools.


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About Edwin Arnaudin
Edwin Arnaudin is a staff writer for Mountain Xpress. He also reviews films for and is a member of the Southeastern Film Critics Association (SEFCA) and North Carolina Film Critics Association (NCFCA). Follow me @EdwinArnaudin

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