Mon, Jul 22nd, 2013 12:00 am

SLIFF/Kids – Children’s Film Festival in St. Louis Announces Guests of Honor

Cinema St. Louis introduces SLIFF/Kids, the First Annual St. Louis International Children’s Film Festival, presented by PNC Arts Alive. With a half-dozen presenting partners, CSL will offer film programs, camps, and a workshop as part of SLIFF/Kids, which is held from July 26-Aug. 4, 2013. A total of 14 film programs will be screened on the fest’s two weekends (July 26-28 and Aug. 2-4) at Webster University, the St. Louis Public Library, the Missouri History Museum, Washington University, Lindenwood University, and the Wildey Theatre. With the participation of both Lindenwood and Webster universities, filmmaking camps on live action and animation will be held at the St. Louis Public Library’s Creative Experience on the fest’s weekdays (July 29-Aug. 2). And on Aug. 3, a full-day animation workshop will be held at the Saint Louis Art Museum. The SLIFF/Kids film programs and camps will be offered free of charge; a modest fee will be charged for the animation workshop, but all supplies and materials will be provided.

The following guests of honor will be featured at SLIFF/Kids:

Michael Sporn, Lifetime Achievement Award in Animation

Michael Sporn has been a vital creative force in animation for 40 years. Declaring Sporn “a poet of animation,” cartoon historian John Canemaker writes: “His artistry and craftsmanship are first-rate, and he invests each of his handmade projects with keen intelligence, integrity, and heart.” Before opening his independent studio in 1980, the Oscar®-nominated and Emmy-winning producer/director worked closely with legendary animation artists Faith and John Hubley, Richard Williams, and R.O. Blechman on commercials, shorts, and feature-length films. Sporn has produced a remarkably diverse range of animation, including feature-film titles, television specials, and even visuals for the Broadway stage. A sensitive interpreter of children’s stories for the screen, Sporn has carefully adapted to animation the unique styles of such storybook illustrators as William Steig, Russell Hoban, Bernard Waber, and Mordicai Gerstein. Working with music by composers such as Caleb Sampson, William Finn, and Charles Strouse and the distinctive voices of James Earl Jones, Susan Sarandon, and other actors, Sporn has produced adaptations of such classic tales as “The Red Shoes” and “The Hunting of the Snark.” Sporn presents programs of his work on the evening of Aug. 2 and afternoon of Aug. 4.

A Teen Workshop on animation drawing with Mr Sporn will be held from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 3, at the Saint Louis Art Museum (SLAM). Teens can sharpen their animation drawing skills in this all-day, hands-on workshop led by Oscar®-nominated and Emmy-winning producer/director Michael Sporn. Participants will learn basic elements of cartoon animation, from pre-production to voiceover work. Sporn will also share a selection of his own films and lead students through various animation drawing exercises. Completed drawings will be combined into a short animated feature. Each student will be mailed a copy of the completed animated film. Class size is limited to 15; participants must be between 14 and 18 years old. Cost is $75 ($50 for SLAM members), and all art supplies are provided; lunch is not included but can be purchased at the Museum Café. To apply, visit the Saint Louis Art Museum Web site.

Joey Dedio

Joey Dedio is a veteran of film, stage and television. As a youngster, Dedio appeared in After School Specials and on the NBC soap opera “Another World”; portrayed the title role in the NBC Series “The Karate Kid”; and served as the voice of “Wheeler” on the animated series “Captain Planet and the Planeteers.” As an adult, Dedio has worked as a regular in the serial “Sunset Beach”; guest-starred on such dramas as “Law and Order” and “Chicago Hope”; originated the role of Angel in the critically acclaimed off-Broadway play “Skin”; and appeared in more than 15 films, including the Sundance competition drama “Strays.” Taking on additional roles, the multitalented Dedio wrote, produced, and starred in “Downtown: A Street Tale” and produced the award-winning documentary “The Providence Effect.” Dedio plays the title role in “Tio Papi,” which he co-wrote and produced. He’ll introduce the film and participate in a Q&A on July 27.

Jere Hausfater

Native St. Louisan Jere Hausfater, a leader in the media and entertainment industries for more than 30 years, currently serves as the chief operating officer of Aldamisa International, whose “Standing Up” closes SLIFF/Kids on Aug. 4. Before joining Aldamisa, Hausfater founded and was CEO of Essential Entertainment. He previously served as executive vice president at Miramax International, where he managed international distribution. Before Miramax, Hausfater was a president at Intermedia Films, and he spent more than 12 years as executive vice president of Disney’s Buena Vista International/Buena Vista Film Sales/Buena Vista Home Entertainment. Hausfater started his career in the music business, holding executive positions with United Artists/Blue Note Records, ABC Records, and MCA Records. A graduate of Boston University School of Business, Hausfater also holds a law degree from Southwestern University. Hausfater introduces “Standing Up” and participates in a post-film Q&A
Filmmaking Camps
Cinema St. Louis and the St. Louis Public Library are presenting Filmmaking Camps in live action and animation from Monday-Friday, July 29-Aug. 2, at the Central Library’s new Creative Experience space. The first camp, co-presented with Lindenwood U., is held from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. each day and will give students the opportunity to collaborate on a live-action short. The second camp, co-presented with Webster U., is held from 1:30-4:30 p.m. each day and will focus on the creation of an animated short. The shorts that the students make will screen as part of SLIFF/Kids on its final weekend. The camps are aimed at middle- and high-school students ages 12-18; students will be assigned to five-member teams and grouped according to age. Each team will produce its own short. Spots for 20 students are available in each camp. There is no cost, but students must provide their own transportation and commit to attending the camp on all five days. To inquire whether space is still available, call Brian Spath at Cinema St. Louis: 314-289-4153.