Jun 222011

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Acorn Penny Screens at Cleveland Museum of Art

Jada Young / Photo by William Laufer, Laufer Film 2010

Cleveland, OH (Vocus) August 4, 2010

The Acorn Penny, a short film by filmmaking father – daughter team Laufer Film, will have its Cleveland premier at the Cleveland Museum of Art on Friday, August 13th, 2010. The short will play in front of the Brazilian feature documentary Only When I Dance.

The movie recently won first prize in the Twin River’s Film fest. Joanna Connors of the Cleveland Plain Dealer

“Though news reports from the war in the Congo depict a nightmare of atrocities, Laufer was determined to make a film that would alert viewers to the war without using violence.”

The movies also was shown at the Los Angeles Women’s International Film Festival and was well received at the second annual Amelia Island Film Festival. The film was covered in Michelle Egger’s article for the Jacksonville Nassau Sun. The short film was also selected to be shown at the “Short Film Corner” a market for short films held at the Cannes International Film Festival, May 12 – 22nd.

The Acorn Penny is a short film of hope. An artistic work of fiction that shines a light on a forgotten part of the world. A call to aid for the living and a remembrance of the estimated 6.9 million people who have died in the Democratic Republic of the Congo since 1998 in what is called the Mineral Wars.

The Acorn Penny is a wondrous story of the power of a child’s dream to save herself and the world around her. When four magical acorns fall to her feet, Kinshasa’s dream of the future unfolds into an adventure she never imagined she could call her own. As she rediscovers her African past, the war torn present and her wondrous potential she realizes she must fight the forces that stand in her way, for no one else will.

This award winning short film was shot on the Red Camera utilizing background plates from the United Nations High Commission on Refugees, and the Cleveland Museum of Art. The Acorn Penny successfully brings together a dream world and a reality that viewers are immediately drawn into. This beautiful story of the potential of one girls dreams of the future is not to be missed.

The Acorn Penny recently won 1st place at the Twin Rivers Media Festival in Asheville, North Carolina. Playing to an embracing crowd, this short film of just fourteen minutes has open hearts and minds to the enormity of the crisis happening in the DRC, Democratic Republic of the Congo in regards to the mining of Conflict Minerals and the plight of women in this worn torn country.

The Acorn Penny has actively handed out information from two non-for profits that are currently working in the Congo. The Hope For The Congo program based in Washington DC and the International Relief Commission in New York City. Its been important, whenever our film screens that we have information about agencies that are playing a part in the recovery and healing of the DRC. Laufer said “We’ve been spreading the word, and hopefully people have learned something new about this conflict after attending our screenings.”

LauferFilm.com was founded in 1996 by Georgetown University grads Bill and Tiffany Laufer. Bill and Tiffany Laufer are a father – daughter film team who recently finish the new Christmas feature film Christmas at Maxwell’s.



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Jan 252011

Atlanta, GA (PRWEB) October 14, 2004

The APEX Museum lives up to its mission of celebrating Black History every day. On any given day visitors can stop by the museum and see a treasure trove of African American history artifacts. In celebration of the Underground Railroad, the secret network upon which thousands of slaves escaped, The APEX Museum presents an event billed as a “reality” film experience. On Friday, November 12 from 6-8pm, it will premiere the short film, “Mattie, Johnny and Smooth White Stones” directed by and starring Cassandra Hollis.

Produced by Holy Hill Productions, the film had a successful West Coast premiere at the CFMi Festival in Los Angeles in May. Festival Chairperson, Valiant Robinson, said of the film, “It is a must see film. Cassandra is phenomenal as Mattie.” It was selected from the festival to be screened among the “Best of CFMi” at the recent Black Expo in Los Angeles held in September. “Mattie” is also among a select group of short films chosen out of dozens of submissions to screen at the upcoming Gloria Film Festival in Utah.

APEX Museum Executive Director, Dan Moore, Sr., saw the film and thought it was important to showcase the film in their famous Trolley Theatre, “A moving and powerful drama about love, faith and empowerment. Set during the days of slavery, this captivating short film is a compelling story with a superb portrayal by Cassandra Hollis.”

“Mattie, Johnny and Smooth White Stones” is a story a film that provides a rare look into the personal lives of slaves. Mattie and Johnny are two slaves who are in love and decide to runaway to get married when they secretly learn that Johnny is going to be sold. A surprising twist occurs and audiences see the role that Faith played in leading runaways on their journey to freedom. Filmmaker/Actress, Cassandra Hollis, explains why this story needs to be told.

“After studying real slave narratives of slaves who braved the elements and consequences to run away to freedom, I realized that I personally had not seen many film portrayals outside of the great Harriet Tubman about runaway slaves. And few films about slavery address the love relationships that slaves experienced. This was an opportunity to bridge those two narratives all within the context of Faith. It was only God who led them through rugged woods, snow, slave catchers, you name it, to their freedom.”

The public is invited to the event which begins with a reception including refreshments and music and from 6:00 – 7:00pm, the program begins at 7:00pm which will include Spoken Word, followed by the Film Screening and Q & A with Filmmaker/Actress Cassandra Hollis. The APEX Museum is located at 135 Auburn Ave. in Atlanta. The event is Free.


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