Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Atlantic City Cinefest adds Stockton’s City Campus To Venues for 12th Festival

            The 12th annual Atlantic City Cinefest adds Stockton University Atlantic City Campus to Dante Hall Theater as its 2019 venues. The film festival, which runs Oct. 4 to 6, screens some 70 shorts, documentaries and feature films, many from New Jersey filmmakers. Tickets are on sale now. Visit
"Stockton University has been a proud partner of the Atlantic City Cinefest, through Dante Hall Theater, and the Noyes Arts Garage since 2012,” said Stephanie Clineman, Artistic Programming/Theater Manager for Dante Hall. “For the past seven years, the two locations have served as the main screening venues and centralized hub of event activity, throughout the festival weekend. 
“We're excited to announce that this year, the partnership will include Stockton’s newly constructed Atlantic City Campus. In addition to Dante Hall, we will be screening films inside of the spacious and stylish, Fanny Lou Hamer Event Room, located in the Academic Center, and in a screening room in the beautiful Residence Complex, along the Boardwalk.”
            The first Ursula Ryan Lifesaver Award will be presented during the Oct. 6 awards ceremony. Named after the late owner of Weist-Barron-Ryan, the iconic Pleasantville acting school and casting agency, the award recognizes lifetime achievement.
Former Lifesaver Award winner, Blanche Baker, returns as writer and director of a musical, “Make America Safe,” a satire on the gun culture. Baker, a co-star of “Sixteen Candles” as the loopy bride sister of Molly Ringwald’s character, will also participate in the annual filmmakers panel Saturday Oct. 5 at Dante Hall. The panel, which also includes South Jersey filmmaker and animator, and festival trustee, Sebastian Foxworth, and trustee and Weist-Barron-Ryan operator, Stefanie Ryan, trustee Jack Skyyler, filmmakers Mark Clauburg and Keith Vaile. Trustee Ned Eckhardt, a retired Rowan professor, will again emcee.
            “As a filmmaker I learned a lot from the excellent panel discussions at Cinefest. The intimate setting of the festival encourages interaction with audience, filmmakers and actors. It is a well run festival with an interesting selection of films across genres. I love it!” Baker said.
Her short answers the question: what if guns were not just a right but a requirement? “What if the motto ‘If everyone is armed there will be no more crime’ became the law of the land? `Make America Safe’ takes a sardonic look at this possible future where rights trump reason,” she said.
As in past years, the Cinefest will present a mix of films, including comedies, dramas and animation, along with documentaries. The lineup includes a lot of annual returning filmmakers: locals like Anthony Picciotti, Vaile and Phil Barnett, North Jersey filmmakers: Clauburg and Larry Rosen, and trustees Skyyler and Foxworth.
For the first time, we will feature blocks of films from students at two high schools
around the state: Northern Burlington Regional and Middletown North.
"We're really excited to showcase our students work from Northern Burlington and to be a part of the AC Cinefest for the first time," said video production teacher James Dowd.
Christopher Cullen, TV film production teacher at Middletown, says this is a great opportunity for students.
“Not only do they have the chance to meet others with their same interest and artistic abilities, but have the chance to network with filmmakers who have been in the industry and get to experience all aspects of a film festival at an early age,” Cullen said. “Being able to screen their work in front of the public to show what they can do is the most rewarding for these students  I think it is amazing that film festivals give these young talented filmmakers a chance to express themselves and screen their work."

Tickets are priced at:
Single block @ $5
Daily Pass @ $25
All Festival @ $40

Check the Facebook page to see when the schedule goes up.

Video promo by Anthony Picciotti:

Saturday, August 3, 2019

Celebrate Labor Day 2019 With AC Cinefest


Celebrate Labor Day with Cocktails and a Cruise

Usher in Labor Day weekend with the annual Atlantic City Cinefest Happy Hour Cruise fund-raiser aboard the iconic Cruisn 1 on Friday evening, Aug. 30. The one hour journey around the back bay departs the dock at Historic Gardner’s Basin at 6 p.m.  Boarding begins at 5:30 p.m.

“We had a great time last year and raised a lot of funds too,” says Joelle Sokolic, president of the non-profit Cinefest.

The Cinefest is partnering with Atlantic City Cruises to raise funds for the 2019 event, Oct. 4 to 6. The organization earns 50 percent of each ticket sold on behalf of the festival. 

Tickets for the cruise only are:
  • $20 for adults
  • $15 for seniors 62 and over
  • $10 for children 5 to 15. 

A full cash bar is available or patrons can purchase the Cruise-n-Cocktail Package for $40, which includes house drinks, wine, beer, and soda. 

"This calm water cruise is ideal, a relaxing cruise with great music and specialty cocktails that heads behind Brigantine Cove and into the Golden Nugget Marina,” says Captain Jeff George, president of Atlantic City Cruises. "What a great way to start the Labor Day Weekend."

To reserve a place on the cruise, contact Joelle Sokolic, 609-515-2189 or To pay in advance and insure a ticket, contact Joelle to arrange for payment via Venmo. If spots are available, you can pay at the dock prior to the cruise. Cash only.

Atlantic City Cinefest, presented by Downbeach Film Festival, celebrates the art form of independent moviemaking. For more information, visit

Cruisn 1 is operated by Atlantic City Cruises located at Historic Gardner’s Basin, 800 N. New Hampshire Avenue. For more information, visit

Monday, March 11, 2019


No Good Deed Goes Unpunished
**2019 London Independent Film Awards – Winner – Best Feature Film**
**2018 Jersey Shore Film Festival – Winner – Best Suspense Thriller, Best Actress**
**2017 Atlantic City Cinefest – Winner – Best Feature, Best Cinematography, Best Actor**

Viva Pictures will release the upcoming horror film THE SAMARITANS On Digital and On Demand on April 16, 2019.

Watch the Official Trailer:

THE SAMARITANS is a new horror flick that stars Keith Collins (The Meat Puppet, The Evangelist), Doug Bollinger (Waltzing Anna, Mail Order Bride), Timothy Laurel Harrison (Out of My Hand), and Annelise Nielsen (The Brink of Us). The film was written and directed by Doug Bollinger and was based on a story by Keith Collins.

THE SAMARITANS tells the story of four co-workers who get together to finish a project at their manager’s home. They haven’t actually met face to face and they discover they have more in common than the new App they are perfecting. As they piece together their histories, they realize that each of them has a deadly secret that could reveal a way out or seal their fates. Their pasts have provoked a vengeful force to show them the errors in their ways. The home they have been summoned to becomes their court and their prison. Can they prove that history doesn’t repeat itself? Can they redeem themselves before time runs out? Will they figure out their fateful bond before revenge has its way with them?
A Statement from the Filmmakers:
We (like most filmmakers) believe that our film is different. It is not different because of the content (which we do think is pretty darn good). It stands alone in a crowded field of indie horror/thriller because of the how we did it. This film could be marketed as the "next big thing" or "scary" or "creepy" but that would be just like any other marketing campaign. It is all of those things but the fact it was made in such little time for such little money is very rare.
Six people. One weekend. Two rooms. That's all it took for The Samaritans team to shoot this micro-budget thriller. The tense mood was created with one light, four actors, and no more than three takes on any setup. The creative team consists of Doug Bollinger, Keith Collins, Cory Green, and Matt Grego. The entire feature film was shot in a four day weekend. This intrepid group of dedicated filmmakers did nothing but eat, sleep, and shoot to create what is sure to be one of the most talked about indie thrillers of the year. 

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*Editors note: We've followed the progress of this film and highly recommend this as a must see. knowing now that The Samaritans was made in such little time with only six people is astonishing! One of the most thrilling pieces of art, captivating, scary and purely frightening, this film deserves all the attention it gets as we here give it 4 STARS.

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Paul Sorvino To Receive the Pat Conroy Lifetime Achievement Award

The Beaufort Film Society is honored to announce that Paul Sorvino will be presented the prestigious Pat Conroy Lifetime Achievement Award at the 13th annual Beaufort International Film Festival in February. The festival dates are February 19-24, 2019 with the Red Carpet Reception and Awards Gala taking place on Sunday, February 24th at the University of South Carolina, Beaufort, Center for the Arts.

"If you look at his body of work in the film and television industries, his work on Broadway, his philanthropic efforts over the past six decades, you can  see why we're so very honored to present the Pat Conroy Lifetime Achievement Award to the legendary entertainer Paul Sorvino," stated Beaufort Film Society President Ron Tucker.

The award is named for Best Selling Author and Academy Award nominated Screenwriter Pat Conroy, who was a long time resident of Beaufort, SC before his death of pancreatic cancer in March 2016.  "Beaufort's long film history began with Pat when his novel The Great Santini was made into a feature film followed later by The Prince of Tides. Both films were shot right here in Beaufort," stated Rebecca Tucker, Co-Director of the Beaufort International Film Festival.

Brooklyn-born actor Paul Sorvino began his career as a 16-year-old singer at a Catskills resort dreaming of becoming an opera singer. And it was no pipe dream. He had studied singing for years and, to this day, has a beautiful tenor voice. But rent and real life led him into a variety of odd jobs and a stint in the Army.

His singing hopes somewhat stifled by asthma, he redirected his career into what promised to be a more promising field—acting. Years of acting and vocal lessons were largely supported through scholarships. After studying dramatic arts under the tutelage of renowned acting teacher Sanford Meisner at the prestigious American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York City, Mr. Sorvino made his Broadway debut at 25 acting and singing in the original 1964 production of the musical "Bajour."

Over the next three years, Mr. Sorvino worked a variety of jobs (salesman, chauffeur, etc.) while gaining prominence as an advertising writer/creative director and pursuing his acting career. He made his film debut in Carl Reiner's 1970 comedy "Going Ape" and began a career solely dedicated to acting and occasional singing.

At 40, the tenor made his lifelong dream come true with his operatic debut in "Die Fledermaus," selling out six performances at the Seattle Opera (the impresario Glynn Ross told the press Mr. Sorvino had "one of the voices of the century"). The reviews included "he has an astonishing high C." In opera, he would go on to sing the lead in "The Most Happy Fella" in 2006 at The New York City Opera at Lincoln Center and sold out 15 critically acclaimed performances.

Paul Sorvino's resume is as long and varied as any performer could hope for, including over one hundred eighty movies and television shows, two operas, three Broadway plays, musicals on Broadway and at major theaters across the country. For THAT CHAMPIONSHIP SEASON, he won six awards including the New York Drama Critics Award for Best Actor, Drama Desk, Obie, Outer Critics Circle, Clarence Derwent awards and a Tony nomination for playing the rich, morally bankrupt Phil Romano.

BERT D'ANGELO SUPERSTAR with stints on STILL STANDING as well as many singing appearances (He is an internationally known operatic tenor). Public Television has aired his special "PAUL SORVINO SINGS" (he can be heard on the album of the same name). TV was also the medium for DUMMY, the Peabody award-winning drama in which he played Lowell Myers, the ground-breaking deaf trial lawyer.


In 1987, Paul founded the AMERICAN STAGE COMPANY on the campus of Fairleigh Dickinson University. It remains the most successful regional theater in American theatrical history. Of twelve original productions over a period of three years, six had New York openings, including OTHER PEOPLES MONEY, which went on to become a major motion picture starring Danny Devito. The theater opened with ALL THE KING'S MEN, directed by and starring Paul. The response was so favorable that Paul quipped "I think my mother wrote the reviews."

Early on Paul  suffered from severe asthma, but as an adult created and mastered breathing techniques that helped control attacks. He wrote the 1985 best-selling book "How to Become a Former Asthmatic" and founded the Sorvino Asthma Foundation to educate the public about asthma and techniques for managing the illness. He has been honored twice by the Pope for his work with asthmatics as well as by the American Medical Association.

Paul Sorvino is a true Renaissance man. In addition to being a fabulous entertainer in almost all genres, he is also an accomplished Chef. Along with his wife Dee Dee, he is the author of Pinot, Pasta, and Parties, a new cookbook that he describes as the "the best Italian cookbook that I have seen. There is no Italian that doesn't love food. There is food that doesn't love Italians, but there is no Italian that doesn't love food," Sorvino says.

An internationally known sculptor, he has created more than thirty figurative works in bronze including installations at The Versace House in Miami, Fla., The Courthouse Square in Scranton, Pa. (a portrait of his dear friend Jason Miller), and the Boca Raton Community Hospital in Boca Raton, Fla.

Paul has been Knighted by the Order of the Carinzia started by St. George in the third century for the protection of the Pope. His title is Knight of The Great Cross and he is also a Knight of the Italian Republic. The Sorvino coat of arms dates from the twelfth century. But as all European Knights eventually learn, no free subway rides come with this title.

An actor, director, best-selling author, screenwriter, professional bronze sculptor, pianist, business man, operatic tenor and passionate cook, Sorvino still returns occasionally to his original dream and headlines his own concerts.

He lives in New York and Los Angeles with his wife, Emmy award - winning television host and commentator Dee Dee Sorvino.

He is the father of Michael, Amanda and Academy Award winning actress Mira Sorvino. Paul was recently chosen to be honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Paul is currently filming the American Crime Drama Television Series, The Godfather of Harlem, set to debut in 2019.

The "Pat Conroy Lifetime Achievement" Award is sponsored by Leslie and Landon Thorne.

For more information about the 13th Annual Beaufort International Film Festival, visit The festival is produced by the Beaufort Film Society.

The Beaufort Film Society is a nonprofit, 501 (c) 3, member-supported organization, dedicated to providing the highest levels of entertainment and education to the public from all areas of the film industry.

Friday, November 2, 2018

The Los Angeles Chinese Film Festival Announces 2nd Annual Festival with a Robust Slate of Films and Panels from 21 Chinese Independent Voices

The Los Angeles Chinese Film Festival (LACFF) is proud to host its second annual festival, screening 21 nominated films from Chinese independent filmmakers and artists, at the Downtown Independent Theater, from November 1st to 4th, 2018.

LACFF is the only film festival in Los Angeles to focus on independent Chinese culture and heritage films. LACFF also aims to foster cultural exchange between the Hollywood and Chinese film industries.

This year, the festival received a total of 255 film submissions from 11 different countries and regions. After two months of expert and jury deliberations, 21 films were nominated; including three features, three documentaries, six narrative shorts, four documentary shorts, and five experimental/animated shorts.

Of the festival line-up, nine films will be making their North American and/or Los Angeles Premiere at LACFF this year. The feature film, E.T. Made in China (Dir. Xiaosha Zhang), as well as stop-animation short, The Quintet of the Sunset (Dir. Jie Weng), will be making their World Premiere at LACFF as well.

This year's films cover a variety of international topics, focusing primarily on the directors' thoughts on the ever changing Chinese and global landscapes. For example, E.T. Made in China looks at the modern Chinese rural reality in the presence of actual extraterrestrials; Speculator (Dir. Yuntao Du) features the ride-sharing app, Uber and the foreign capital flowing into the Chinese market; People's Republic of Desire (Dir. Hao Wu) explores the financial and personal conflicts behind live internet streaming platforms; and Hanzi (Dir. Mu-Ming Tsai) explores Asian culture and identity through a typographic lens.

Jury members this year include Ruijun Li, the director and screenwriter of Walking Past the Future,which has been featured in the official selections of the 70th Cannes Film Festival, the 65th Berlin International Film Festival, and 69th Venice Film Festival; film scholar Gabrielle Kelly, who has taught at UCLA, USC, & NYU and is currently on the faculty at AFI; Rebecca Baron, a Los Angeles-based media artist whose works have screened widely at the New York, Toronto, and London Film Festivals; award winning producer Richard Liang, whose documentary won the Best Chinese Documentary Award at the Taiwan International Documentary Festival in 2016; David E. James, film studies professor at USC's School of Cinematic Arts; Jeff Swimmer, professor of Documentary at Chapman University's Dodge College of Film and Media Arts; award winning cinematographer, Helder K. Sun; and Emmy Award winning visual artist, Lin Zheng.

This year, LACFF is also hosting industry tastemakers to speak at two panels discussing the collaboration and future of US and Chinese entertainment, in both the business and creative fields. The panelists include Rong Chen, Senior Vice President of Perfect World and CEO of Perfect World Pictures, Mike Gabrawy, Chief Creative Officer of Arclight Films; Randy Greenberg, Executive Producer of The Meg (2018); Bennett Pozil, Executive Vice President of East West Bank; Jimmy O. Yang, actor on Silicon Valley (2014-2018) and Crazy Rich Asians (2018); Jessica Gao, Emmy Award winning writer for Rick and Morty (2013) and Silicon Valley (2014); Helen Shang, writer on Hannibal (2015) and Invoking 5 (2018); Rachel Song, Founder, CEO, and bilingual producer of XS Media (A Kid Like Jake, 2018); and Rui Yao, screenwriter of Lin Shi Yan Yuan (2017) and Angry Kid (2013).

The LACFF is organized by Chinese in Entertainment (CIE), a Los Angeles-based non-profit organization that supports Chinese talent and culture in entertainment and the arts.

For additional information on the 2018 LACFF, including screening times, locations, featured guests and ticketing details, please contact

Ticket Information:

Full Festival Line Up
Narrative Features

E.T. Made in China (World Premiere)
Director: Xiaosha Zhang

Girls Always Happy
Director: Mingming Yang

Transcendent (North American Premiere)
Director: Linzi Zhang

Documentary Features
Hanzi (Los Angeles Premiere)
Director: Mu-Ming Tsai

I've Got a Little Problem (Los Angeles Premiere)
Director: Ximing Zhang

People's Republic of Desire
Director: Hao Wu

Narrative Shorts
Director: Mengchen Niu

Birthday Party
Director: Theo Ma

Director: Dawei Zhang

Director: Feng-I Roan

Miss World
Director: Georgia Fu

Mother Eden
Director: Erzhuo Wang

Documentary Shorts
Arcosanti: A State of Fugue (North American Premiere)
Director: Kehui Feng

Life as He Likes
Director: Lizhu Yang

One Day In GaoYi (Los Angeles Premiere)
Director: Jiaxuan Xiao & Muqiu Qin

Speculator (Los Angeles Premiere)
Director: Yuntao Du

Animation and Experimental Shorts
Ayesha (Los Angeles Premiere)
Director: Yanyu Dong

Director: Anchi Shen

Cry Baby (Los Angeles Premiere)
Director: Xiner Jiang

Light (Los Angeles Premiere)
Director: Tatsu Aoki

The Quintet of the Sunset (World Premiere)
Director: Jie Weng

Opening and Closing Screenings
Opening Screening: Walking Past the Future
Director: Ruijun Li

Closing Screening: Linsanity
Director: Evan Jackson Leong