Screen scene: Local film news

A group of graduate students at Wake Forest University have produced The Hollerin' Contest at Spivey's Corner, a 15-minute documentary. Image courtesy of the filmmakers

• The East Asheville Library continues its free documentary series on Thursday, May 28, at 6:30 p.m. with a screening of Catfish. Directed by Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman, the film follows Schulman’s photographer brother Nev and his relationship with Abby, a woman with whom he connects online after she sends him a painting. Though the debate persists whether or not the 2010 film is a true documentary, the final product is a fascinating look at social media and human behavior. The film is also the inspiration for the hit MTV show of the same name, hosted by Nev Schulman. PG-13, 87 minutes.

• Black Mountain-based filmmaker Chris Gallaway is about to launch The Long Start to the Journey, a feature-length documentary based on his 2013 thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail. The film looks at how the adventure “shaped my life and my relationship with my then-girlfriend, now-wife Sunshine,” says Gallaway. “It also looks back at the origin story of the Appalachian Trail and how the vision and values of the trail founders molded what the trail has become today.” DVD and VOD will be available later this summer, but a public screening takes place at Asheville Community Theatre on Saturday, May 30, at 7:30 p.m. $7.

• A group of graduate students at Wake Forest University has produced The Hollerin’ Contest at Spivey’s Corner, a 15-minute documentary about the eponymous Hollerin’ Contest in Sampson County. The film follows three competitors, 1977 ladies hollerin’ champion Iris Turner and 1978 junior hollerin’ champion Robby Goodman — both of Fayetteville — and five-time hollerin’ champion Tony Peacock of Siler City.

The filmmakers launched a successful Kickstarter campaign to raise $1,000 for festival submissions, but have stretched their goal to $2,500 in order to produce a soundtrack of the entire 2014 National Hollerin’ Contest. The crew of Brian Gersten, Liv Dubendorf and Geoff Groberg has recorded every holler from that particular competition but still need to, in their words, “edit it, perfect it and sweeten it.” Their goal is to make the soundtrack available on iTunes, Amazon or another appropriate platform. If the new amount is reached by Wednesday, June 3, all backers will receive a digital copy of the soundtrack.

• The new 12-minute documentary Inclined Minds examines how creativity can be a source for social change in Asheville. The film’s website calls the city and its surrounding region “an incubation steppingstone, one that embraces healthy conversation between creatives, activists and entrepreneurs.”

Among those individuals featured in the film are performer/writer Tom Chalmers; N.C. Stage Company’s Charlie Flynn-McIver; The Magnetic Theatre’s Chall Gray; minister/educator Howard Hanger; Buncombe County Commissioner Holly Jones; Asheville Area Arts Council Executive Director Kitty Love; Mojo Coworking’s Craig McAnsh; Pack Place Managing Director Heather Nelson; musician/producer Josh Phillips; LEAF Executive Director/Founder Jennifer Pickering; Mountain Roots Management’s Bob Robertson; and food entrepreneur John Swann.

The project’s founders — local filmmaker Christopher Gaspar receives the “Story by” credit — also note that their “continued goal is to highlight intersections between innovation and social outreach, hoping to measure that impact and develop programmatic solutions for underserved community needs.”

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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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