Cat Fly Film Fest 2018

Cat Fly Indie Film Festival returned for its 2nd annual event over the weekend of April 6th to 8th where short films from across the Southeast were showcased in a non-competitive, networking atmosphere in some of Asheville’s best venues.

Opening night was a red carpet affair at the Asheville Masonic Temple with catered hors d’oeuvres, photos by the step and repeat, and a selected program of dramatic narrative shorts including SIDES by Trust Fall Productions, FAKE EMMA by All Around Artsy, SHOWER by dUMB, and the 48 Hour Film Project favorite CUDDLED.

Photography by Joe Pellegrino

Posted by Cat Fly Film Fest on Sunday, April 15, 2018

 

Community night was hosted at The Mothlight in West Asheville where Cat Fly played works focused on experimental elements, in addition to traditional genres like horror shorts and music videos. UNBEARING by Jennifer Trudrung and Aiden Weaver was a highlight. DALLAS music video by dUMB won the audience choice award, but CROAK by Matt Barrett of Calamity Effects won the crowd reaction.

Day 2 of our weekend festival!
Photography by Joe Pellegrino and Joe Naylor

Posted by Cat Fly Film Fest on Monday, April 16, 2018

 

Closing night of Cat Fly was held at Grail Moviehouse with a focus on documentary storytelling. The audience choice award was received by Michael Arcos for THIS MY FAVORITE MURAL. I was personally lucky enough to win a gift certificate for studio space at the Asheville School of Film, one of Cat Fly’s amazing sponsors.

Photography by Joe Pellegrino

Posted by Cat Fly Film Fest on Thursday, April 19, 2018

 

While the main events were incredible, Cat Fly also featured two workshops, one examining the relationship between music and film, while the other reflected on failure in art, and the steps necessary keep sets safe. Sunday morning also had Andie Morgenlander, filmmaker behind POLISHED, lead a session of Cat Fly yoga. Festival founders Brittany Jackson, Madeleine Richardson, and Cat Wityk outdid themselves in what I hope becomes a tradition for the Asheville film community.

The828.com // freelance writing

I recently joined The828.com as a freelance writer for local news pertaining to all things eat, drink, and play, which works for me since I know my way around those Asheville scenes. The opportunity presented itself since I’ve been working in Event and Promotions for the Asheville Radio Group, who host The828 as their online presence, as well as program live radio stations 105.9 The Mountain and Mix 96.5.

Find my first few articles from March and April 2018 embedded and linked below.

You’re in luck – St. Patty’s at Claddagh Restaurant and Pub – Asheville, NC starts with rugby and Irish coffee.

Posted by The 828 on Wednesday, March 14, 2018

=The new Fractals Coffee Shop and Cafe comes equipped with a time machine.

Posted by The 828 on Tuesday, March 20, 2018

COMING ATTRACTIONS: Find out about the Cat Fly Film Fest, coming to The Mothlight, Grail Moviehouse & The Asheville Masonic Temple.

Posted by The 828 on Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Don’t cook 4/26! Join Western North Carolina AIDS Project during “Dining Out For Life”.

Posted by The 828 on Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Come play with Mario – and try a new beer to support Asheville City Soccer Club – at Hi-Wire Brewing.

Posted by The 828 on Monday, April 9, 2018

12th Level Intellects: February & March ’18

The 12th Level Intellects keep on keepin’ on through February and March with new episodes of the podcast every other week, available on both iTunes and YouTube. James Strecker and myself are the usual hosts, but were joined by a few other folks in some of the segments this round, who you’ll be introduced to shortly.

Comics writer Matthew Manning joined us on the podcast to discuss his work on last year’s BATMAN / TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES ADVENTURES series, and some various stand-alone issues for DC Comics such as JUSTICE LEAGUE ADVENTURES, THE BATMAN STRIKES, and BEWARE THE BATMAN, as well as his sole artist credit drawing a necklace on Mera in on a random 1990s AQUAMAN comic. Manning is a local to Asheville, so I was able to visit his home, record in the living room, and check out his amazing collection of Batman memorabilia.

For episode #11, James and I go back to the roots of the Watchtower Database channel and discuss something specific to the DC Animated Universe. Particularly, we take a look at the Flash, and whether Barry Allen existed in this world when all we ever saw was Wally West in the superhero role. Personally, I lean towards no.

Nothing more notable for the 12th Level Intellects than its twelfth episode. Mattie Washburn was our guest on this one while he and James were at the Emerald City Comic Con in Seattle, Washington. Unfortunately, my audio recording glitched, so James and Mattie navigate the main conversation themselves of what events happened ‘for sure’ between animated series JLU and BATMAN BEYOND. This episode goes out to all the fans who know the Plasma Rifle was invented in 2005.

While at ECCC, James and Mattie had the opportunity to chat with Phil Lamarr, the voice actor behind major DCAU characters Static from STATIC SHOCK and Green Lantern, John Stewart from JUSTICE LEAGUE UNLIMITED, as well as many other familiar voices in animation like SAMURAI JACK and FUTURAMA. While I missed the meet and greet with Mr. Lamarr, you can still hear me talk about upcoming movies and comics in the News and Comic Relief segments of the podcast episode.

WDb // Trivia Tuesdays (cont’d)

A few Tuesdays have passed, and with them, new episodes of my Trivia Tuesdays segment on the Watchtower Database channel on YouTube. I narrate a fact related to the DC Animated Universe, such as easter eggs or behind-the-scenes info on cast and crew. Clips and pics are edited in accompaniment by James Strecker and Mark Daniel Martinez. All are roughly one minute long, and drop every other week.

First, we take a walk on the dark side, and dive into the similarities between the SUPERMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES episode “Legacy” and SUPERMAN: THE DARK SIDE graphic novel from the Elseworlds imprint. Both stories feature a Superman who never grew up on Earth, but was raised by Darkseid on Apokilips instead.

Next, we analyze the actors who have portrayed DC Comics characters in both the DC Animated Universe and CBS’ THE FLASH from the early 1990s. Most notably would be Mark Hamill, who played the Trickster on THE FLASH, and also reprised the character in JLU. Hamill also played Solomon Grundy in JUSTICE LEAGUE, and his most famous role as the Joker, which Hamill has provided for over twenty years.

Last, we look at BATMAN: THE LOST YEARS, which was a comic book tie-in to the BATMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES. Several chapters of the series were later produced as episodes of THE NEW BATMAN ADVENTURES. Though the art from THE LOST YEARS used designs from the previous incarnation of the series, the comic was actually based off scripts for the show, and not the other way around.

2nd Annual Cat Fly Film Fest

Cat Fly Film Festival is preparing for its second annual event over the weekend of April 6-8th. Another incredible lineup of narrative short films and documentaries, all created by filmmakers in the Southeast, have been selected to screen at three exceptional venues in Asheville. Tickets are on sale now, and they do sell out!

I don’t have any shorts that I personally spearheaded in the lineup this year, though I was an Associate Producer and Sound Recordist on SIDES by Will Osigian and Trust Fall Productions. I am also assisting the festival’s directors– Brittany Jackson, Madeleine Richardson, and Cat Wityk– in an administrative capacity where I help plan the event and logistics in Cat Fly’s new status as a Nonprofit organization.

GOOD HAIR @ Iron Mule in NYC!

GOOD HAIR played at the Iron Mule Comedy Short Film Festival in New York City on March 7th at the Alamo Drafthouse. When I pushed GOOD HAIR through the festival circuit last year, a few of the events were scheduled so far in advance that I nearly forgot about Iron Mule, but it was a welcome surprise to be programmed. Iron Mule looked like a wonderful event, and I wish we could have attended!

LEGACIES Special: “Powers That Be”

“Powers That Be” is the latest issue of LEGACIES OF THE DCAU, now available to read online as of Saturday, February 24th. This special follows up plot threads established in “Asylum”, both of which were written by myself, with art by Marcello Millicay, James Strecker on composite effects, and covers by Robert Castellano.

The issue picks up mere hours after Killer Croc’s capture at the hands of the New Arkham security force. We reveal where he was taken, and why his appearance is more monstrous than the last time we saw him in the DCAU. Originally, the script was written as issue #5 with “Asylum” being the other half, but we split the story into specials to speed up the production process. “Powers That Be” also brings a few new characters into the DC animated universe, particularly Geri and Warren Powers, a husband and wife team with the entrepreneurial drive to force Bruce Wayne out of business, which sets up plot threads later seen in BATMAN BEYOND.

Click the cover to read “Powers That Be”!

The characters established in this issue will continue to appear throughout LEGACIES, and their connections to our other story elements will be revealed over time. Issue #5 is currently in production as the first part of a new arc called “Shadow Play” which will feature some of the DCAU’s more familiar villains, and show what they have been up to since the fall of the Secret Society, and their “five minute head start” at the end of the JUSTICE LEAGUE UNLIMITED series finale.

12th Level Intellects on iTunes!

12th Level Intellects, the bi-weekly geek entertainment podcast hosted by James Strecker and myself, is now available for streaming and download over iTunes!

The podcast will continue to retain its affiliation with the Watchtower Database YouTube channel where all episodes will be uploaded per usual. The iTunes platform will allow for a smoother streaming experience on mobile devices, especially since iOS users already have the Podcast app included on their phones. Be sure to subscribe, give us a 5-star rating, and write a review if you feel inclined.

Click the logo for the podcast!

 

Trivia Tuesdays with Ted

In an effort to create steady and ongoing content, the Watchtower Database has tapped me for its new Trivia Tuesdays segment. Every other week, we release a one-minute video relating a random fact about the DC Animated Universe, usually pertaining to behind-the-scenes elements such as voice acting or production.

Our first installment was entitled “Tim Drake, Boy Wonder of Many Voices” where we look at the five different voice actors to lend their talents to the second Robin.

Next, we look at Superman and his cheekbones of steel, digging into why Superman’s appearance changed so drastically between his look on SUPERMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES and JUSTICE LEAGUE, and the subsequent redesign for the latter series’ second season, and beyond into JUSTICE LEAGUE UNLIMITED.

12th Level Intellects: January 2018

January was a busy month for the Watchtower Database as we released three more episodes of the 12th Level Intellects podcast, hosted by James Strecker and myself.

With episode #6 scheduled on New Years Day, we decided to run an interview that we conducted a few months ago with Scott Peterson, editor on THE BATMAN ADVENTURES and writer on BATMAN GOTHAM ADVENTURES, both ancillary comics series to the legendary BATMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES. Peterson has worked on countless other projects in the comics realm, and his interview is well worth the listen for its inspiration and look behind the initial creative process.

For episode #8, we appropriately discussed STAR WARS, EPISODE VIII: THE LAST JEDI. I must admit that I was a little rusty since I had only watched it once, and it had been a few weeks since my viewing, but James and I managed to cover the gist. There were aspects to both appreciate and critique, from the production to the plot. When you get down to it, Mark Hamill’s return to playing Luke Skywalker was a big deal, whether you thought director Rian Johnson approached that correctly or not, an argument that will be sure to permeate among fandom for years.

Another guest joined the show for episode #9 where we discussed the Marvel Cinematic Universe with Jesse Dellea, a rabid MCU fan who digests every piece of content you can find from MARVEL. We talked about recent films like last year’s SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING and GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 2, NETFLIX series THE DEFENDERS and THE PUNISHER, content on other channels such as AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. and RUNAWAYS, as well as shows from FOX’s X-MEN universe like LEGION and GIFTED. The future looks bright for MARVEL as they prep for INFINITY WAR and beyond to phase 4, which could possibly be fantastic.