Austin Film Festival's On Story
On Story Episode 1645: Halloween Episode

On today’s episode, On Story delves deep into the horror genre with the filmmakers behind Blair Witch, I Am Legend, The Walking Dead and The Conjuring.

We begin this special Halloween edition of On Story with the filmmakers behind Blair Witch. This reboot of the found footage horror classic opened in theatres in September of this year and picks up the story twenty years after the events depicted in the original film when a group of college students and their local guides venture into the Black Hills Forest in Maryland to uncover the mysteries surrounding the disappearance of Heather Donahue, the sister of one of the characters. We recently caught up with the film’s director Adam Winguard and screenwriter Simon Barrett who begin by discussing memorable scenes from the original that inspired their reboot. 

Film and television writers Carey and Chad Hayes are the duo behind the screenplays for two films in The Conjuring universe. The Conjuring and The Conjuring 2 are directed by James Wan and are based on the real-life experiences of paranormal investigators Edward and Lorraine Warren. The first film, The Conjuring grossed 318 million dollars worldwide, making it one of the most profitable in the horror genre. The Conjuring stars Vera Farmiga, Patrick Wilson, Ron Livingston and Lili Taylor. The Conjuring 2 was released in summer of 2016. The Hayes brothers, Carey and Chad, got their start in screenwriting in the 1990’s writing several made for TV and direct to video movies before teaming up with legendary producer Joel Silver and writing the screenplay for the reboot of the 50’s horror classic, House of Wax.

Mark Protosevich is a screenwriter whose credits include The Cell, Poseidon, I Am Legend, Thor and Old Boy. The Cell starred Jennifer Lopez, Vince Vaughn, and Vincent D’Onofrio, and was the feature film debut of director Tarsem Singh.  Roger Ebert listed The Cell as one of the ten best films of 2000. I Am Legend starred Will Smith and was based on the novel of the same name by acclaimed author Richard Matheson. 

Angela Kang got her start on the FX series Terriers. She’s been on the writing staff for AMC’s The Walking Dead since the show’s second season in 2011. The seventh season of The Walking Dead premiered on October 23rd 2016. 

Direct download: HALLOWEEN_EPISODE.mp3
Category:Film and Television -- posted at: 5:16pm CDT

On Story Episode 1644: Live from AFF 23 and Season 2 Preview

This week, On Story brings you a look inside the 23rd Austin Film Festival and Conference, which happened from October 13th through 20th 2016.

Marta Kauffman is an Emmy- and Golden Globe-winning television writer, producer and show-runner. She got her big break in the 1990’s with the HBO series Dream On, and the enormously popular smash success, Friends. Her new Netflix series Grace and Frankie features an all-star cast including Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin, and is currently streaming its second season.

With six novels that produced over sixty adaptations for the screen, the talents of Jane Austen have lived on long past her time on earth. At a panel titled Deconstructing Jane Austen, the filmmakers behind Sense and Sensibility, The Jane Austen Book Club, The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, and What Jane Saw discussed how they adapted these beloved novels for various storytelling mediums, and why they think Austen’s themes and stories remain so powerful today. We begin with University of Texas Academic Jane Barchas discussing  “that shirt” worn by Collin Firth in the 1995 adaptation of Sense and Sensibility and which is now on display in the Folger Shakespeare Library. In this segment, we’ll also hear from Memoirs of a Geisha screenwriter Robin Swicord, Former President and COO of United Artists Pictures Lindsay Doran and our own Barbara Morgan.

Creed co-writer Aaron Covington compare the two films Rocky and Creed, and discuss what it was like to work alongside writer/actor Sylvester Stallone, actor Michael B Jordan and director Ryan Coogler.

Jeff Nichols is the writer-director behind the films Shotgun Stories, Take Shelter and the critically acclaimed 2012 film, Mud starring Matthew McConaughey, Ray McKinnon and Michael Shannon. Jeff Nichols’s latest film, Loving, depicts the real-life story of interracial couple Richard and Mildred Loving who married in 1958 and were then sentenced to one year in prison for violating Virginia’s anti-miscegenation statute, the Racial Integrity Act of 1924.

Filmmaker Jason Segel got his start on the beloved series Freaks and Geeks. His other credits include Undeclared, Forgetting Sarah Marshall, How I Met Your Mother and his portrayal of David Foster Wallace in The End of the Tour. Next up, AFF Film Competition Director Harrison Glaser speaks with Jason Segel at a special screening of Segel’s beloved 2011 musical comedy, The Muppets.

The Edge of Seventeen is written and directed by Kelly Freemon Craig and produced by film and television legend James L Brooks. The film stars Hailee Steinfeld, Haley Lu Richardson, Woody Harrelson and Kyra Sedgwick. The Edge of Seventen hits theatres in November of this year. In this final segment, Barbara Morgan speaks with Kelly Freemon Craig and James L Brooks at a special screening of their film.

Direct download: Live_from_AFF_23_.mp3
Category:Film and Television -- posted at: 12:09am CDT

On Story Episode 1643: Norman Lear

This episode of On Story, television legend Norman Lear discusses his experiences creating and running some of the greatest sitcoms of all time.

Norman Lear began his television career as a writer in the 1950’s and went on to create some of the most celebrated network television comedies in history, among them, All in the Family, Maude, Sanford and Son, Good Times, The Jeffersons, One Day at a Time and Mary Hartman Mary Hartman. We were honored to present Norman Lear with the 2015 Outstanding Television Writer Award at the 22nd Austin Film Festival where we also hosted a live reading of his un-produced pilot Guess Who Died. Everybody Loves Raymond creator Phil Rosenthal spoke with Norman Lear at the historic Driskill Hotel in Austin Texas on November 1st of last year. 

Direct download: NormanLear_Encore.mp3
Category:Film and Television -- posted at: 8:21pm CDT

On Story Episode 1642 Terry George and Jim Sheridan

This week’s On Story features two highly celebrated Irish filmmakers, Terry George and Jim Sheridan. First, Terry George discusses his collaboration with Sheridan and the second film in the pair’s Irish trilogy, In the name of the Father. Later, Jim Sheridan on his life, and work from the theatre stage to the big screen.

Filmmaker Terry George made his screenwriting debut in 1993 with the semi-biographical courtroom drama, In the Name of the Father. The film was the first of three collaborations between Terry George and writer-director Jim Sheridan depicting the ethno-nationalist conflict in Northern Ireland during the late 20th century, commonly referred to as The Troubles. 

In the Name of the Father is based on the true-life story of the Guilford Four, who were falsely convicted of the 1974 IRA bombings, which killed five people and was partly adapted from the autobiography of the film’s main character Gerry Conlon. In the Name of the Father received seven Academy Award® nominations including Best Actor for Daniel Day Lewis, Best Supporting Actor for the late Pete Postlethwaite, Best Supporting Actress for Emma Thompson, Best Director- Jim Sheridan and even Best Picture. 

Following a distinguished career in the theatre between the 1960s and the 1980s, Jim Sheridan wrote and directed his first critically acclaimed feature My Left Foot in 1989. He followed in 1990 with The Field, which he also wrote and directed and in the same year he wrote the screenplay Into The West. Jim Sheridan collaborated with today’s other guest, Terry George on three films, In the Name of the Father, Some Mother’s Son and The Boxer. His films have garnered a remarkable sixteen Academy Award nominations and two wins and his latest film, The Secret Scripture is slated for release later this year.

Direct download: TERRY_GEORGE__JIM_SHERIDAN.mp3
Category:Film and Television -- posted at: 2:54pm CDT