08/01/2012 09:10PM ● Published by Denise Brown
By Jack Lyons
The HOT issue here in the valley, other than the weather, is the upcoming Big Bear Lake International Film Festival taking place just up the road in the cool climes of Big Bear Lake. Mark your calendars! The festival begins Thursday, September 13 and runs through Sunday, September 16.
The festival, which keeps getting bigger, bearier, and more prestigious in movie circles, is a personal favorite of mine for a couple of reasons. One, it’s one of a few festivals that recognizes and honors the creative effort and input of the cinematographer. Without this creative artist, no film would ever ap- pear on a movie screen. BBLIFF has been featuring the work and expertise of the world’s finest cinematographers for years. The culmination of this on-going recognition is the annual presentation of their Lifetime Achievement Award for Cinematography. This year, the 2012 honoree is the late, great, cameraman and director of photography, Jack Cardiff.
English writer, producer, director Craig McCall, whose documentary film “Cameraman: The Work and Life of Jack Cardiff,” became the basis for the posthumous award, will accept the honor on be- half of Cardiff’s family. This prestigious award is being presented by Monika Skerbelis, festival co-president and film programming director. In addition, Hollywood director of photography John Bailey, last year’s Lifetime Achievement Award honoree, will be present to add his personal anecdotes and commentary about his friend, Jack Cardiff and Jack’s many accomplishments in a career that spanned 90 years!
The second reason this festival is high on my list of film festivals to attend is their continuing honoring of the Lifetime Achievement Award for Screenwriting. SandySteers, festival co-president and screenwriting competition director, has announced Academy Award-winning screenwriter Tom Schulman as recipient of the 2012 Festival Honoree for Screen- writing. Screenwriting is another discipline that fuels the creative arts machine. As they say... “In the beginning was the Word.” Blank pages like blank canvases remain just that—blank, unless the creative urge and talent take over.
Tom Schulman is a most deserving honoree. He became an Academy Award- winning screenwriter with his first effort, “Dead Poets Society,” starring Robin Williams. He’s also penned “What About Bob?” starring Richard Dreyfuss and Bill Murray, “Honey I Shrunk the Kids” with Rick Moranis, as well as, “Medicine Man,” “Holy Man,” and “Welcome to Mooseport.” Schulman also has a busy TV writing and producing career with such projects as HBO’s “The Anatomy of Hope” pilot.
The Big Bear Lake International Film Festival is a must-see event for fans of wonderfully written and gorgeously filmed movies and screenplays. For information on festival tickets call (909)866-3433 or visit www.bigbearfilmfest.com. See you at the festival!