Two Upcoming Events Designed To Celebrate Independent Film

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DETROIT (WWJ) - If you love movies, there are two events coming up in August that you definitely don't want to miss -- and both celebrate the independent film community. 

The first event, which gets underway on August 14, 2019, is the Trinity International Film Festival, which is now in its 13th year and still going strong.

"When we first started, I think that -- especially in the metropolitan Detroit area -- we showcased about five or six independent filmmakers," Marshalle Montgomery-Favors, the festival's co-director, told WWJ's Terri Lee.  "And this year, we have 20 metro Detroit filmmakers that are part of the Trinity International Film Festival, and then we have 20 other filmmakers that are from metro Detroit that we're featuring with the Fearless Tribe of Fanatic Filmmakers." 

This year's event, Montgomery-Favors says, features 67 films from 18 countries.  It runs for five days, starting with Alumni Night on Sunday, August 14th.

"We're encouraging our filmmakers who have been a part of the festival over the years to come and connect and continue to network," Montgomery-Favors said.  "As I mentioned before, we have another component called the Fearless Tribe of Fanatic Filmmakers that is a showcase specifically for Detroit-based filmmakers, and so we want people to just come out.  We have something for everybody to enjoy; all moviegoers, from drama to sci-fi and romantic comedies." 

Another event that's also geared towards independent film is the I See You Awards, created by WWJ Film Critic Terri Lee.  Award-winning filmmaker Phil Elam is one of the presenters at the awards.  He spoke with Mark S. Lee, host of Small Talk with Mark S. Lee, heard on WWJ's sister station, WXYT 1270. 

"The I See You Awards is an awards program that celebrates the independent voice in the mainstream, Elam told Lee during a taping of Small Talk earlier this week.  "As you all know, whether you're a Steven Spielberg or J.J. Abrams, or whomever, you started off in the independent world," Elam added.

The awards run for three days, starting with a full day of film screenings on Thursday, August 22nd, concluding with a black tie awards ceremony on August 25th.

"This is one of the spirits of what the I See You Awards is all about, just celebrating that independent, original voice, and I think that's one of the reasons why it's just become a bigger and bigger event each year," Elam said.

Awards to be handed out include those for best actor and actress, best supporting actor and actress, best sound, editing, director and best picture.  Chandler Kilgore-Parshall, an accomplished LA-based writer/producer, serves as a judge for the screenplay entries.  Kilgore-Parshall was also interviewed by Mark S. Lee for his show "Small Talk."

"There's so many different stories out there; some great dramas ... some great comedies, but the biggest thing I look for in a script is originality, Kilgore-Parshall told Lee.  "Sometimes you know, out here in this industry you have reboots and remakes of reboots, and sometimes it can be a little frustrating that ... you don't see as many original stories being told because there's so much talent.  It's not just Detroit, it's not just L.A., it's anybody who can think of a good story."

You can hear more about the I See You Awards on Small Talk with Mark S. Lee heard on WXYT 1270 starting at 8 a.m. Sunday morning.

For more information and to purchase tickets to the Trinity International Film Festival, click here.

For more information and to purchase tickets to the I See You Awards, click here.

The I See You Awards are sponsored by the Michigan Film & Digital Media Office, Emagine Entertainment, Final Draft, Paramount, Limo World and WWJ Newsradio 950, with additional partners Randazzo Formal Wear, The Lee Group and ES Communications Agency.

Be sure to tune in to WWJ Newsradio 950 every Friday for Terri's weekly look at the movies with Midday Anchor Jackie Paige.

Follow Terri on Twitter @TerriJLee.

Member:Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA)Detroit Film Critics Society (DFCS)African American Film Critics Association (AAFCA)SAG-AFTRA