NW ILLINOIS FILM FESTIVAL
About the NW Illinois Film Office
from Gary Camarano, Executive Director
The Northwest Illinois Film Office is dedicated to assisting film projects find the right locations, navigate local regulations and State film incentives, and identify local cast, crew and supply chain. The film office also promotes Illinois filmmakers and their projects through events like our annual Northwest Illinois Film Festival.
FESTIVAL: TWO THUMBS UP
AUDIENCE WANTS A SEQUEL
Morrison, IL (August 31, 2020) - Last Wednesday night, August 26, over 170 film fans converged on the Midway Drive-In Theatre in Sterling, IL, for the First Annual Northwest Illinois Film Festival. Most came from the Northwest Illinois region, some from Chicagoland, and one flew in from Los Angeles. According to the festival organizer, the Northwest Illinois Film Office (NIFO), the film festival was a celebration of Illinois indie filmmakers. Featuring 11 short films from some of Illinois’ most talented independent filmmakers, the festival’s theme was that of a “Shorts-A-Palooza”.
The program also included the following films: Dearly Departed, by FreshFilms; Light, and The Follower, by Patricia Frontain; Hiplet: Because We Can, by Addison Wright; How is This the World, by Grace Hahn and Sadie Rogers; Survive by Danial Miller and Tim Morgan; Keep the Change, by Tom Doherty.
NW ILLINOIS FIRST ANNUAL FILM FESTIVAL
AUGUST 26, 2020
COMMENTS FROM . . .
Filmmaker: How Is This The World
Filmmaker Sadie Rogers, Director of How is This the World, said, “We loved getting to see our short and so many others glowing at the drive in! The Midway Drive-In is cool and adorable, and it was thrilling to have the NW Illinois Film Office bringing some many Illinois filmmakers together safely and in such a great space.”
Filmmaker: A Bridge Too Far From Hero Street, Riding The Rails To Hero Street
"It was a magical evening seeing the two new Hero Street documentaries light up the screen," said producer Tammy Rundle. "It was our first drive-in film exhibition and rather thrilling!"
"Gary was determined to have a safe film festival for attendees to enjoy and adapted the 'plan' to showcase short films produced by independent Illinois filmmakers at the Midway Drive-In Theatre. It was a great success," added director Kelly Rundle. "We are very gratified that our two new Hero Street documentaries were selected by invitation for the festival."
“The Northwest IL Film Office went to great lengths to honor the filmmakers and their films. The vintage Midway Drive-In was the coolest and safest venue to screen the block of films. I am honored that both Kill the Light and The Musician were part of the launch of the festival. Special thanks to the all-Illinois cast and crew that helped make these films and to the State of Illinois”.
Filmmaker: Kill The Light, The Musician
MEET THE FILMMAKERS
Kill The Light
Mark Schimmel has been directing award-winning commercials, television, short and feature films for the past 18 years. His work is conceptually driven and supported by images that communicate with emotion. He’s directed notable actors such as Eric Roberts, Claudia Christian, Rene Auberjonois, Bill Ratner, Lance Barber, Academy Award nominee, Woody Harrelson, George Strait, Anne Harris and Russell Wilson. Recently Schimmel co-produced 2nd unit for “The Now”, a Quiby written and directed by Peter and Bobby Farrelly.
Mark Schimmel was born in Chicago. He studied drawing at The Art Institute of Chicago, photography at Columbia College, and completed his BFA at PRATT Institute, New York City and his MFA at Vermont College of Fine Arts. Early in his career Schimmel designed movie posters for Miramax Films and was an artist for Walt Disney Productions and an advertising creative director. When not directing commercials, he’s teaching at Columbia College Chicago and Ringling College of Art and Design.
An Actress / Director of regional theater which satisfied her love of storytelling. And an owner of a horse and carriage company, which satisfied her love of business ownership and horses. Her Directorial Debut LIGHT was featured in The Midwest Film Festival and chronicles a mother’s journey through grief after losing her son. Marina Squerciati and Amy Morton star in this inspirational short film. THE FOLLOWER stars Jon Seda and Kara Killmer, entwined in a dysfunctional family life. Her series of anti-gun violence Public Service Announcements entitled SHATTERED with actors from CHICAGO PD, CHICAGO FIRE, and CHICAGO MED have aired nationally. These projects were produced while working her 60-70 hour week as Script Supervisor for CHICAGO PD where she has worked since the first day of Season One in 2013. In January 2015 she suffered the sudden and tragic loss of her 14-year old son, killed by senseless gun violence. He was caught in the wrong place at the wrong time. Losing her son could have dimmed her light forever instead this strong woman chose to take the energy wrapped up in the pain and turn it into good and helping others. In 2016 she founded Patrick Lives On, a thriving Not For Profit which has already enabled over 300 at-risk kids to attend after-school classes and summer camps. Her son’s death opened up a never- ending well of creativity.
In the last three years, she has not only directed multiple projects, but she has also produced three large Variety Show Fundraisers and two Film Festivals, all starring Dick Wolf’s One Chicago actors. With a powerful voice and passion for storytelling, she is fortunate to enjoy a loving family and work environment who enable her to continue learning, living, loving and giving. She is proud to have her amazing daughter,
Zoe Boswell debut in The Follower!
Sean is a writer and director known for science fiction and dark comedy. His thriller, 'The Replacement' premiered at the Chicago International Film Festival and won 30 festival awards on its festival tour and premiered on the DUSTscience fiction network. He got his start as a production assistant on 'The Dark Knight' and 'Wanted' and went on to assistant directed over 40 short films, commercials, and music videos, on brands like Volkswagen, Budweiser, and Air National Guard.
KELLY & TAMMY RUNDLE
A Bridge Too Far From Hero Street
Riding The Rails To Hero Street
Kelly & Tammy Rundle of Fourth Wall Films in Moline, Illinois have been producing, writing, directing and editing historical documentaries, museum films and other media projects for over 25 years. The Rundles are the recipients of four Mid-America Emmy® nominations, more than a dozen film festival awards, Four Telly® awards, numerous film festival Official Selections, and humanities grand awards for eight Midwestern states. They are the producers of the award-winning documentary The Barn Raisers, which premiered at the Putnam Museum National Geographic Giant Screen and was an Official Selection by Invitation at the Newport Beach Film Festival in Southern California. Recently completed productions include Riding the Rails to Hero Street and A Bridge Too Far From Hero Street. They are also producers of the Mid-America Emmy® nominated historical documentaries Good Earth: Awakening the Silent City, River to River: Iowa’s Forgotten Highway 6, Letters Home to Hero Street (QPT-PBS), Country School: One Room - One Nation, and the award-winning and critically acclaimed documentary files Movie Star: The Secret Lives of Jean Seberg (with McMarr, LTD.), Lost Nation: The Ioway Film Series, and Villisca: Living with a Mystery. The Rundles recently completed their first docudrama, Sons & Daughters of Thunder, and premiered it in the Quad Cities as well as in Cincinnati, Ohio where the true story of the first public debates regarding the abolition of slavery took place in 1834.
Production locations included Sterling, Andover, and Rock Island, Illinois.
Fourth Wall Films is currently in production/post production on Resurrecting Forest
Grove, The Amish Incident: Wisconsin vs Yoder, and An Infantryman From Hero Street. For more information visit FourthWallFilms.com
Hiplet: Because We Can
Addison Wright is a filmmaker and creative from the South Side of Chicago. He’s collaborated with several Chicago musicians, creating stunning visuals for their music videos. Hiplet: Because We Can is his first film and is a SXSW 2020 Official Selection. Addison is a master of the creative process, from visualization to execution. Directors like Spike Lee, Hype Williams and Spike Jonze inspired his passion for film. A Delaware State University graduate, Addison earned his degree in TV production with a concentration in film. Addison has 7+ years of filmmaking under his belt and aims to inspire people with his creativity within the years to come.
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