Sunday, January 30, 2005

The Dirty South Cleans Up At Sundance

Two, count them two independently produced films, made right here in Memphis have won awards at this years Sundance Film Festival in Park City Utah. "Forty Shades of Blue" won the Grand Jury Prize for American dramatic films. The film stars Rip Torn as an aging record producer who's caught in a love tri-angle. It was filmed entirely on location here last year. I have a friend who works at a local recording studio here where part of the movie was shot. They ended up using him as an extra. He told me the scene he was in invloved him walking into a recording studio, and being cussed out by Rip Torn. I hope to God that scene has not ended up on the cutting room floor.

The other Memphis film "Hustle and Flow", won the Audience Award in drama. The film is about a Memphis pimp who wants to turn his life around by becoming a rapper. Isn't that the dream of all pimps?
This film stars Terrence Manning and DJ Qualls. Incidently, some of the music and sound editing was done at Ardent Studios. And while my friend only helped set up the studio for the session, he is in some ways connected to this movie as well. (So Adam, if you get an invite to either premiere party, remember what we talked about, coattails man, coattails...)

"Blue" was directed and co-written by Ira Sachs, who grew up in Memphis but now lives in New York.
"Hustle" was directed by Craig Brewer, who still lives here, and who plans to make his next movie here as well. Remember those two names, we expect great things from them in the dirty south.


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