Sunday, August 28, 2011


With Irene churning up the Eastern Seaboard and all the emotions of Jack Layton's state funeral still churning in our collective psyches, it's not a stretch to say this has been a turbulent and eventful end to summer.

On the film front things are also pretty dynamic, albeit less dramatic...

The Canada-wide DVD release is not even two weeks old, our sold-out screening at the 1st annual Eastern Townships Film Festival is still a fresh and very special memory (thanks again, Pepita and company!) and in less than a week, I'm off to Frankfurt for the LUCAS Film Festival where the film is once again in international competition.

To top it all off, there's another, as-yet-unnamed, soon-to-be announced development on the near horizon.


Oh, and that's not all... at the end of this month, there's the first ever "Dolly Day" up in the Yukon! A unique initiative that Claire Derome and the folks at the Whitehorse Rotary Club have cooked up specially around our film and its connection to Dolly. I'll be accompanying the movie up there, where it will be featured in a celebratory day of movie, music and meetings dedicated to raising awareness and funds for the regional Imagination Library, Dolly's literacy project for children.

I'm thrilled to be part of it. This event is such a wonderful by-product of making this film and Dolly's involvement in our whole story. Not to mention, it's a very direct opportunity for us to give something back to Dolly by supporting a cause that is so important to her. To that end, thanks go to our distributor Mongrel Media, who graciously agreed to waive the screening fees.

So, lots still happening now and into the fall... Check back here or on our Facebook Fan Page for all the latest updates!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Coming Out

Today's the day ... another landmark in the long journey of making a movie is here... A whole new chapter in our film's life has begun. And even though many people put many long weeks of work into it, this morning it still seems to have happened a little magically.

Because in something reminiscent of "The Night Before Christmas", we all lay down last night for a sultry summer's sleep in a world where our movie existed only on film and in theatres.

While we slept though, all snug in our beds with visions of bonus features dancing in our heads, way off in the distance all manner of planes, trains and trucks were busy criss-crossing the country, tossing sacks full of something special into every Blockbuster, Future Shop, Walmart and HMV store in sight.

And as these stores open their doors this morning, what to our wondering eyes would appear.... but the brand new DVD of our film lining their shelves, my dear!

Very cool.

The movie is something else now. Something somebody can rent or own. Something somebody can take home. Don't know why, but that tickles me.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The Outremont and Other Old, Beautiful Buildings

Last night's screening at the storied Théâtre Outremont was a very fitting, chapter-closer for our film and its makers.

We screened our French subtitled 35mm print to a largely francophone and very receptive audience. Then followed it up with a Q & A session that travelled back and forth between French and English with lots of smart, sensitive questions for Barbara, Rebecca and myself. Apart from the Outremont's savvy regular clientele, the house was also filled with many friends and family who had come from far-flung parts of the province to either see the last big screen screening for the first, second or even third time.

After the Q & A ended, we were gently asked to leave the theatre but only made it as far as the lobby where we all clumped up in the lobby - kisses, hugs, comments, questions continuing - and finally wound up closing the place down (much to the chagrin of some gracious staff who hadn't planned on a late night) by carrying the stimulating conversations out to the sidewalk.

A nice surprise of the evening: Quebec singing star, Isabelle Boulay had come along to the screening with some mutual friends. She was very keen to see the film especially because she herself has recently reached out and made a special connection with Dolly - the two of them are now set to perform a song together in the near future. Isabelle said that she too had received Dolly's gracious response and acceptance via fax!

So now that the last scheduled Canadian big screen projection of our film has come and gone, we can turn our energy and attention to...

- the DVD release! Coming out on rental and retail shelves across the country August 16th!

- being the Closing Film at the inaugural edition of Eastern Townships Film Festival, August 21st!

- being in competition at LUCAS Film Festival, Frankfurt, Germany, September 4 - 11!

- having the privilege of participating in a very special, Dolly-driven, Imagination Library awareness-raising event in Whitehorse, Yukon!!! September 29th

- being mindful and grateful for all the gifts this film has brought and continues to bring

And now that we've gone far into the future, why not journey back into the very distant past.... The third instalment of my Italian adventure's photo commentary is up here !