Developer Scott Shapiro, who purchased the building in a deal that closed earlier this year for $2.35 million, tells CHS the way is now clear for work to begin to transform the old theater on E Roy at Broadway into a mixed commercial and office development. You won’t see any major construction right away — permits for the project are still being reviewed by the city.
The architect on the project is Capitol Hill-based S+H Works.
If renovation work gets started this summer, Shapiro expects tenants to move in by early 2016.
From Even the Walls (Image: Canh Nguyen)
Meanwhile, another tale of Central Seattle development with a much different subject matter was honored at SIFF 2015. Even the Walls, a 27-minute examination of the lives being changed by the redevelopment of Yesler Terrace from directors Sarah Kuck and Saman Maydání, was presented with the Golden Space Needle Award for best short film. You can view a trailer and learn more about future screenings here.
Bacon at Tuesday’s Q&A (Images: Alex Garland for CHS)
The only cinematic connection CHS can find between the 2015 Seattle International Film Festival lifetime achievement honoree Kevin Bacon and last year’s SIFF honoreeLaura Dern is this poorly reviewed 2001 Steve Martin vehicle. The audience got a little closer Tuesday night at the Egyptian as Bacon appeared for an audience Q&A and to introduce his classic of wholesome teenage rebellion, Footloose.
Wednesday on E Pine, Bacon gets his trophy — tickets to “an evening with Kevin Bacon” and the screening of his new film are still available:
SIFF welcomes Kevin Bacon to the stage for an interview featuring film clips from his career and to receive the Seattle International Film Festival Career Achievement award. Afterwards, there will be a screening of Bacon’s latest film, Cop Car, directed by Jon Watts.
UPDATE: What? More Bacon? The actor stopped by Garfield High School Wednesday afternoon to meet the drama kids. Thanks to Garfield Stage for sharing pictures from the visit:
Meanwhile, there are still lots of Capitol Hill SIFF 2015 highlights still to come to the screens at the Egyptian and the Harvard Exit in the venue’s final run as a cinema:
Some of the best Capitol Hill moments of SIFF 2015 are still to come. Thursday, CHS found the veterans of Seattle Semi-Pro Wrestling out to celebrate the one-night screening of Bodyslam: Revenge of the Banana:
For six years, the stars of Seattle Semi-Pro Wrestling thrilled crowds as they parodied professional wrestling with their boozy blend of burlesque and athleticism. But when a newcomer felt slighted by the tight-knit cabaret performers, he tried to take them down, forcing them into an all-too-real fight for their future.
Filmmakers Ryan Harvie, Kerri Borsuk, and John Paul Hortsmann
The film isn’t slated to screen again during SIFF but you can learn more about the production at bodyslamfilm.com. Meanwhile, here are some of the upcoming on-Hill highlights slated for SIFF screenings at the Egyptian — and the Harvard Exit’s last run as a cinema:
Meanwhile, a package of films capturing life in Yesler Terrace and the issues related to the neighborhood’s redevelopment will be featured at SIFF this weekend in screenings at the Harvard Exit:
Faces of Yesler Terrace
Yesler Terrace is highly controversial in the changing landscape of the city of Seattle. These films capture the people and stories from the past and present of Yesler Hill’s public housing development.
Perhaps the most telltale sign that it’s once again SIFF season on Capitol Hill are the lines of filmgoers. It has become a symbol of the annual festival to see the crowd winding down Pine and up Harvard. Meanwhile, 2015 will bring the last SIFF lines — sigh — to E Roy for the Harvard Exit’s swan song before redevelopment. Here are a few of the people we found in line this weekend. CHS roster of SIFF 2015 Capitol Hill highlights is here.
Coming out of Love & Devotion at The Egyptian Friday night
Ralph and Dan
What brought you guys out to the festival tonight?
Ralph: You know just a wild hair for tonight. Because it was beautiful out. I kind of forgot about the festival because I’d been traveling. But, now, luckily I caught it on the first night. I’m gonna see a lot more.
Dan: He sent me an email with three different movies to choose from and, I don’t know, that got us to here. I’m glad though, it was an excellent movie. Continue reading →
Lyall Bush at the NWFF’s 20th anniversary gala. He’s stepping down as director of the nonprofit in September. (Image: Elisa Huerta-Enochian with permission to CHS)
For 20 years, the Northwest Film Forum has gathered people on Capitol Hill around a common love of making, watching, and learning about independent film and executive director Lyall Bush has been there from the beginning. After watching the NWFF grow from a small film equipment collective into an invaluable arts asset for the city and seven years of steering the ship, Bush is now planning an exit for a new director to make their mark.
Bush announced on Thursday he would be stepping down from his post this September.
“You take stock, at that point, and ask what you want to be doing, and in a sense our 20th anniversary is a good chance for the organization to hit the refresh button (so to speak) as well,” Bush told CHS in an email. “It’s a chance for the whole operation to write a new strategic plan, craft new vision, and keep independent filmmaking going for another couple of decades.”
With its investment to revive Capitol Hill’s Egyptian Theatre at its core and a special “24-day celebratory wake” for the dearly departed Harvard Exit, the Seattle International Film Festival has announced its 2015 lineup.
“This year’s Festival is bigger and more international than ever, with a record 92 countries represented,” SIFF artistic director Carl Spence said in the announcement detailing the 41st edition of the film festival.
SIFF 2015 by the numbers: 450 films / 92 countries / 193 feature films / 70 documentary features / 19 archival films / 164 short films / 4 secret films / 49 World Premieres (23 features, 26 shorts) / 51 North American Premieres (33 features, 18 shorts) / 18 US Premieres (7 features, 11 shorts)
Northwest Connections Seattleites see more films per capita than the residents of any other American city. This year’s lineup of films with their roots in the Pacific Northwest reveals a filmmaking region officially on the map. Every year, SIFF honors the many ways in which the Puget Sound region contributes to the world of cinema, whether it’s as an evocative location for outside filmmakers or inspiration for local filmmakers on the rise.
Ronald McFondle, Eddie Van Glam, The Banana star in Bodyslam: Revenge of the Banana
Beach Town (d: Erik Hammen c: Sarah Winsor, Ahren Buhmann, Riley Neldam, Kenna Kettrick, William Poole, USA 2015, 72 min, World Premiere)
Bodyslam: Revenge of the Banana (d: Ryan Harvie, John Paul Hortsmann c: Ronald McFondle, Eddie Van Glam, The Banana, USA 2015, 86 min)
The Hollow One (d: Nathan Hendrickson c: Kate Alden, Jesse James, Chelsea Farthing, Tony Doupé, Tonya Skoog, USA 2015, 97 min, World Premiere)
Paper Tigers (d: James Redford, USA 2015, 102 min, World Premiere)
Personal Gold: An Underdog Story (d: Tamara Christopherson s: Jennie Reed, Dotsie Bausch, Sarah Hammer, USA/Spain, United Kingdom 2015, 89 min)
Pilchuck, A Dance with Fire (d: John Forsen v: Jeff Bridges, USA 2015, 68 min)
The Primary Instinct (d: David Chen f: Stephen Tobolowsky, USA 2015, 73 min, World Premiere)
Uncertain (d: Ewan McNichol, Anna Sandilands, USA 2015, 82 min)
Valley of the Sasquatch (d: John Portanova c: Miles Joris-Peyrafitte, D’Angelo Midili, Jason Vail, David Saucedo, Bill Oberst Jr., USA 2015, 92 min)
West of Redemption (d: Cornelia Duryee Moore c: Billy Zane, Kevin Alejandro, Mariana Klaveno, USA 2015, 90 min, World Premiere)
In addition to cinematic works large and small and from around the globe and around the Puget Sound, the festival will give Seattle celebrity spotters the opportunity to, perhaps, view A-listers Kevin Bacon and Jason Schwartzman in the wild. Bacon will be honored for career achievement (in 2014, SIFF honored CHS’s girlfriendLaura Dern) and Schwartzman will be featured in an “evening with” event in conjunction with a screening of his new film 7 Chinese Brothers. To kick off the festival, the 2015 SIFF Opening Night gala will include a screening of Spy attended by director and writer Paul Feig.
It’s hard to say what Kurt Cobain might have thought of it all. Maybe he would have smirked in bemusement at some point, at least. The Egyptian was sold out in advance Thursday evening for an exclusive screening of Montage of Heck, a documentary about the oft-idolized Nirvana front man Cobain,with director Brett Morgen in attendance and addressing the audience before the film. The CHS Crow stopped by and chatted with some fans of Nirvana and of what has been labeled “grunge rock” who came out to see Morgen’s patchwork portrait depicting a sensitive and troubled, driven and often vexed, artistic genius from Aberdeen, Washington.
What did you think about the film?
I thought it was pretty enlightening, man. A lot of stuff I’ve always wondered about. Really nice.
So you grew up a Nirvana fan?
I became a Nirvana fan probably like early in high school, maybe like ’89. That’s about when I realized I loved that Kurt Cobain.
What in the film stuck out for you as being enlightening, or as giving you new insight?
His family life. I think that was the most enlightening thing. Because everything else you’ve heard before. But the fact that you got to see all that stuff behind the scenes on the family life, I think that was new. Continue reading →
Kurt Cobain committed suicide at his Lake Washington Blvd home in April 1994. For most millennials, that puts the Nirvana frontman in the realm of Seattle music legend. For those old enough to have seen Nirvana perform here, Cobain’s legacy is enriched by memories of his shows and the surreal period of time he and the city were riding the crest of pop culture.
A new documentary on Cobain, Montage of Heck, attempts to paint another portrait of the artist, expressed through home videos, animated art, and the piles of journals Cobain kept throughout his life.
Starting Thursday night, Capitol Hill will be home to a one-week exclusive theatrical run of the film at SIFF Cinema Egyptian prior to the documentary’s May 4th release on HBO.
The film premiered at the Cinerama theater Wednesday night followed by a discussion with director Brett Morgan. “As I was coming into Seattle on the plane it just felt so right. There’s no place we should be than here,” Morgan said.
More on the film — and this weekend’s lineup of Capitol Hill-area events, below. Continue reading →
Talk about an epilogue. After burying it with a bit of an unceremonious January funeral and sorting out what comes next with its ghost, the historic Harvard Exit will make a surprise comeback for a special limited engagement this spring as part of the 41st annual Seattle International Film Festival.
Developer Scott Shapiro paid $2.35 million for the building in a deal that closed in January according to King County Records.
“The Harvard Exit is one of my favorite SIFF venues,” SIFF artistic director Carl Spence is quoted as saying the announcement. “I’m thrilled that we have the opportunity to properly say goodbye to this important cinematic institution by throwing a 24-day celebratory wake.”
SIFF’s longtime technical provider and sponsor, McRae Theatrical, will install a temporary “state-of-the-art digital projection and sound system” for the festival run.
In 2014, SIFF took over E Pine’s Egyptian Theatre and will also continue to include that venue in the film festival.
12th Ave’s Northwest Film Forum hosts the 2015 Seattle Asian Film Festival this weekend featuring 38 works including “the best in recent independent cinema by and about Asian Americans.”
“SAAFF is the only film festival in Seattle to provide a space for Asian American voices, perspectives and histories by screening independent films that reflect the diversity and richness of the Asian American community,” according to a release on the festival.
This year’s highlights include:
The Seattle premiere of 9-Man, a documentary about a gritty, Chinese-American streetball game that’s been played competitively in the alleys and parking lots of Chinatown since the 1930s. The film captures the spirit of 9-man as players not only battle for a championship, but fight to preserve a historic game. Director Ursula Liang won the Audience Award & Special Jury Award for Best Director at the 2014 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival.
To Be Takei, SAAFF’s opening night film, is a documentary about actor and activist George Takei’s journey from a WWII internment camp, to the helm of the Starship Enterprise, to social media superstar. To Be Takei was an official selection at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival.
The Seattle premiere of Sriracha, a short documentary that tells the story of the ubiquitous, spicy sauce’s origin, its cult following, and the man behind the iconic “Rooster Sauce.” Sriracha won Best Short Film at the NYC Food Film Fest.
Tickets for individual screenings are $11 ($13 for opening night) or you can buy a festival pass for $75. Learn more at seattleaaff.org/2015/.
Meanwhile, February’s Capitol Hill art walk Thursday night brings an opening from artist John Criscitello at Vermillion. CHS featured the Woo! Girl creator late last year and we’re looking forward to seeing his latest work not pasted to a utility vault.