Monthly Archives: April 2012

Peter Dinklage plays “Scrabble for Cheaters” Tournament

The non-profit group 826NYC is throwing a “Scrabble for Cheaters” tournament on April 21, 2012 to help support their free programs for NYC public school students. Peter Dinklage will be participating with Jonathan Marc Sherman (a friend and colleague since Bennington College) on their team Overall Wash.

This is not your typical Scrabble game. This game is for cheaters! And you can help Overall Wash cheat their way to the top by making a donation, which funds the 826NYC organization’s creative & educational programs. Help Peter & Jonathan “invent a word” on the spot, add points to any tile, and even “Surf the ‘Net” to knock the opposing team out of the tournament using the cash you donate.

From 826NYC:
“On April 21st, join Peter Dinklage, John Hodgman, Jonathan Marc Sherman, and Michael Showalter for Scrabble for Cheaters 2012, an elimination scrabble tournament, where you and a teammate play against other teams to compete for the coveted Cheater’s Cup.”

The 5th Annual Scrabble for Cheaters will be held at 12PM Saturday, April 21st
at 826NYC HQ: 372 5th Avenue, Park Slope, Brooklyn, NYC.

I’m going to start cheating right now. Here’s a link to some of the best Scrabble word lists on the Internet. If Overall Wash gets stuck, they should use ScrabbleCheat.

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Game of Thrones Renwed for Third Season!

Looks like Game of Thrones has been renewed for Season 3! HBO has put in its order for 10 more episodes. Some unbelievers and doubters were sweating it up, as many expected the renewal to come immediately following this year’s season premier on April 1st.

George R R Martin will be writing an episode once more, tentatively titled “Autumn Storms”, the seventh episode of the season.

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Phoenix Film Festival Winners

After 7 days of intense movie-going, it feels strange to not be in a theater. The 2012 Phoenix Film Festival was a ton of fun, and I’m definitely going back next year. That much awesomeness should not be missed!

Let me recap the experience before I unleash a series of micro-reviews on each event. 28 events is a lot to critique! Friday through Sunday were marathon days, 8-15 hours each day. Monday through Thursday was less intense, but it still seemed like a job – an enjoyable one, no doubt. But alas, it’s over now and it’s back to the grind of a real job and now… the writeups. It is a bit daunting, but I knew the job was dangerous when I took it.

Harkins Scottsdale 101 was the location, and it was really a great venue. I ended up buying a Loyalty Shirt, entitling me to a free popcorn at each movie. Popcorn became a meal replacement every day. The flavored powders helped… The Cine Capri hosted several feature films and seeing movies on the big screen never disappoints. Lots of local sponsors gave out swag and hosted events. Chipotle represented with recycle bags made from billboards – pretty sweet. They also handed out free burrito vouchers during the screening of “Fresh”. Independent Feature Project: Phoenix (aka IFP Phoenix) hosted a bunch of educational features for kids and teens as well as wrangled some film makers & their crew into doing some seminars. The biggest impact on me was hearing everyone discuss their experiences in working with their teams. Teamwork is essential, and assembling a great crew is no easy task. However, more people are involved in indie film work, with skilled and talented folks popping up everywhere. Don’t overlook the next film geniuses!

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Peter Dinklage Interview in NY Times

Take a look at this great interview of Peter Dinklage in The New York Times. Titled “Peter Dinklage Was Smart to Say No”, the article refers to the actor’s strength of character in turning down roles that were ridiculous and demeaning. Lots of tidbits about his past projects – a glimpse of vintage Dinklage (aka “vinklage”) – and upcoming work. It’s great to see an in-depth and cohesive story on him and his work through the years.

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PFF Documentary Shorts

We kicked off our time at the Phoenix Film Festival with their Documentary Shorts presentation. It’s always a gamble with shorts, but I love seeing them. If they’re bad, they’re over quickly and if they’re good, you are getting a bunch of them! I like experiencing the work of many talented artists, but sometimes it can be a chore sifting through them for the diamond in the rough. So throughout the Festival I’ve opted to see shorts in most cases unless it conflicts with a feature I REALLY want to see – which was many, write-ups to come in the next few days as I find time between screenings.

The Documentary Shorts features four powerful narratives showcasing the lives of real people and places. The 2012 lineup includes: Kaziah the Goat Woman, Sacred Poison, Randy Parsons: American Luthier, and My Caddy Won’t Let Me, four very professionally done short documentaries.

Kaziah the Goat Woman

2008. Directed by Amy Duzinski Janes. 40 minutes.

Kaziah the Goat Woman features artist and polygamy escapee Kaziah Hancock. Born on the prairie, she owes her life to the goat that nursed her when her mother could not, and has spent her life being a caretaker and protector of these ruminants on her Utah ranch. Her heart goes out not only to the goats and chickens in her life, but also her fellow humans, especially the families of fallen soldiers. Kaziah paints the portraits, for free, of service members killed in action as a show of support to their loved ones. Her organization, Project Compassion has painted over 3,500 portraits, over 950 painted by Kaziah herself.

The documentary features interviews of Kaziah telling her story of life, love and death in Utah, and tags along in her daily life. Throughout the film, we see her paint, start to finish, a portrait of a fallen soldier based off a photograph sent by the family.

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