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A Message from Tallgrass Film Association’s New Executive Director

Hello friends, supporters and patrons of Tallgrass Film! I’m so pleased to have this opportunity to introduce myself to you, and share a bit about what excites me most about being the new Executive Director. I’m still really new and have not had a chance to meet most of you in person just yet.

I am a long-time arts administrator and I worked in the performing arts (opera and choral music) for many years.

One of the organizations that I managed, Conspirare, won a Grammy three years ago. I have been very lucky to have worked with a lot of world-class artists and to have programmed some amazing things over the years. Most recently I was the Executive Director of Tropic Cinema in Key West, a small art house cinema of some notoriety. This was my entrée into the film world.

I love all the arts, but my passions are music and movies. In particular, I love independent film. For me, great filmmaking is really all about great story-telling and I am continually fascinated by the number of truly wonderful filmmakers who are able to do this. There is some really terrific art being created, often with extremely limited budgets and resources. Film is such an exciting, compelling art form and it’s one that is now in the reach of almost anyone who wants to take a stab at making a movie. At the same time, the marketplace and the channels for getting films out to the public are all in an uproar. The landscape seems to change on a daily basis.

Now more than ever organizations like Tallgrass are needed to provide an outlet for independent film, to support filmmakers and to make the public aware of what they’re doing. We are also quite keen to foster the development of young filmmakers. I hope that you’ll continue to support our efforts by participating in Down to the Wire, by coming to our community events and especially by coming to the Tallgrass Film Festival. We’re going to have some exceptional films this fall and, as always, we’ll be throwing one heck of a party. It’s not to be missed.

I’m very much looking forward to beginning this new chapter with all of you. Please feel free to reach out to me via email at paulm@tallgrassfilmfest.com.

Warmest regards,


Paul Melroy

Executive Director

Tallgrass Film Association announces students and program for the 2019 Scholfield Emerging Programmer Apprenticeship

Tallgrass Film Association has selected fifteen Wichita area students for their 2019 Scholfield Emerging Programmer Apprenticeship (SEPA). The program is lead by TFA Education Manager, Thane Chastain. “I am so excited to work with such a talented group of inspiring students. They encompass a wide range of talents from comedy writing, to directing, to animation, to editing and beyond,” said Chastain. “They will be a tremendous asset to the festival and I am confident they will gain so much through the SEPA program.”

Meet the 2019 Scholfield Emerging Programmer Apprentices:

Amy Baber - Northeast Magnet

Madeleine Coleman - East High School

Peter Daood - The Independent School

Ryan Edwards - Wichita Collegiate School

Ian Foster - East High School

Juliene Fuson - Augusta High School

Benjamin Gering - Newton High School

Cahill Jones - Robinson Middle School

Madelene McVey - East High School

Adler Moss -  Bishop Caroll Catholic High School

Kent Myrtle - Northeast Magnet High School

Silas Stamps - Trinity Academy

Zayden Tomson - Kapaun Mt. Carmel Catholic High School

Lauren Zoller - East High School


The 2019 SEPAs will have the opportunity to learn from and interact with professionals in the film industry, covering a wide range of topics including: film criticism, directing, producing, screenwriting, audio production, lighting, camera technique, video editing and more.


Industry guests scheduled for the 2019  program include: Fletcher Powell (Film Critic, KMUW Public Radio), Rod Pocowatchit (Film Critic, Wichita Eagle), James Choi (DePaul University), Emily Kincaid (Producer), Kendall Goldberg(Director & Screenwriter), Ryland Aldrich (Producer & Film Critic), Savannah Rodgers (Director & TED resident), Ellen Crispin (Director/Producer) and more.

“The Scholfield Emerging Programmers apprenticeship is something special. For the kids it’s an opportunity to dive headfirst into numerous aspects of the art of filmmaking. They’ll get to have experiences that most kids could only dream about and they’ll learn things that would otherwise require being in a undergrad degree program. For Tallgrass, it’s a chance for us to do something that is core to our mission,” stated TFA Executive Director Paul Melroy. “We want to celebrate filmmaking and filmmakers and this program helps create another generation of people who will have a highly informed appreciation for a unique and powerful art form.”

You can learn more about the Scholfield Emerging Programmer Apprenticeship here. 

TFF Selects 3 Women-Helmed Films for the DOX Spotlight

TFA announced the three films that will compete in its new DOX Spotlight Section, which will debut during the 15th edition of the Tallgrass Film Festival Presented by Consolidated Equities Trust. DOX Spotlight is sponsored by Greteman Group.

The female-helmed documentaries include Madeleine Gavin’s CITY OF JOY, Skye Borgman’s FOREVER B and Robin Berghaus’ STUMPED. “Our hope is that this recognition helps to celebrate the women in the documentary trenches and inspire future female documentarians to record the accomplishments, the issues and real life from a woman’s perspective," said Gretchen Mitchell, Tallgrass co-director of programming.

Sonia Greteman, President and Creative Director of Greteman Group said, “Our agency’s all about storytelling. Amazing stories will rise out of this new, women-directed documentary competition, and our sponsorship signals our belief in amplifying women’s voices. And ensuring more people hear them."

Eligible films were  women-directed, feature- length documentaries, not bound by budget or country, with no traditional distribution deal at the time of the film festival in October. Finalists were selected by the Tallgrass Film Festival programming committee and will be juried by a panel of three industry professionals including Beth Barrett (Artistic Director, Seattle International Film Festival), Maisie Crow (Documentary Filmmaker) and Debra Zimmerman (Women Make Movies.)

The winning film will be announced on September 22 along with the full festival lineup and will be showcased at the Dox Spotlight on the evening of Thursday, October 19th. All finalists will screen as official selections and all three films are eligible for the Audience Award for Best Documentary and a $2,500 cash prize.

Meet the Filmmakers & Jurors

Announcing the 2017 Stubbornly Independent Selections!

Four films will compete this year in Tallgrass’s flagship Stubbornly Independent competition: Leena Pendharkar’s 20 WEEKS, Chris Hansen’s BLUR CIRCLE, Jameson Brooks’s BOMB CITY, and Dustin Cook’s I HATE THE MAN IN MY BASEMENT. Chosen from 98 eligible films, Tallgrass programmers spent more than 500 hours viewing and curating this year’s highly selective Stubbornly Independent program. (See more about the films & meet the jurors here.)

The Stubbornly Independent competition winner will be announced with the Tallgrass Film Festival’s lineup next month and will be featured as the Stubbornly Independent Gala Spotlight selection sponsored by Rick & Monica Nutt on Saturday, October 21. The winner will also receive the Jake Euker Stubbornly Independent Award and a $5,000 cash prize. The three runners up will be included as official selections in the festival and will be eligible for the Audience Award for Narrative Feature and $2,500 cash prize.

“This year’s selections feature stories and characters that are both timely and easily relatable, while delivering a unique and bold take, leading to films that feel anything but familiar,” said Tallgrass Film Festival’s Programing Director Nick Pope. “Ultimately these are films about redemption and self-discovery in a world that can be messy and unpredictable, but also rewarding and surprising. We’re honored to be showcasing these stories to Wichita audiences.”

This year marks the 6th year of the SI competition, where eligible films must be domestic narrative feature films made for $500,000 or less without traditional, theatrical, domestic distribution at the time of the festival screening. Finalists will be juried by a panel of industry professionals including Rebecca Celli (Cargo Films), Nancy Gerstman (Zeitgeist Films) and Jeffrey Winter (Film Collaborative.)

The Jake Euker Stubbornly Independent Award is named for a man who was just that. While a true film aficionado, beyond that, Jake was most likely Wichita's most knowledgeable film buff. He was also a friend and longtime supporter of the Festival, serving as everything from Programmer to Host to Trivia Master to the creator of Tallgrass' motto. The Stubbornly Independent award is given in his honor to an independent film or filmmaker who takes risks and isn't afraid to tell important stories, and does all of this within the ultra-low budget of $500,000 or less. Stubbornly Independent since 2003, the 15th annual Tallgrass Film Festival takes place October 18-22, 2017 in Wichita, Kansas.

Tallgrass Super Fantastic Action Pack Book!

The limited edition Tallgrass Super Fantastic Action Pack Book is now available! Created by talented local artist Hannah Scott, the book features coloring activties, word scrambles, a maze, volunteer and celebrity guest caricatures, a madlib, and a buy one get one coupon for a general admission ticket for the festival.

"We wanted to come up with a unique and fun way to celebrate 15 years of the Tallgrass Film Festival," said Creative Director, Lela Meadow-Conner. "The obvious creative collaborator on this project was Hannah, whose work we all admire. We hope people have fun with the book, and even learn something new about the festival."

Plus, there's even a chance to win 2 VIP TALLPasses ($500 value) to the 15th annual Tallgrass Film Festival in October. Simply complete the Stubbornly Independent madlib at the end of the book and post it to twitter, facebook or instagram using #TallgrassMadLib. One winner will be selected for the prize.

Books will be available at select locations around the city or you can download the Madlib here.

TFA's Mini Movie Libraries Are Here!

Want a movie Take a Movie! Have a Movie? Leave a Movie!

TFA is excited to announce that our Mini Movie Libraries are now up and fully operational.

In partnership with Occidental Management and Wichita Fence Co., the mini movie libraries, which were custom designed by Star Lumber and decorated by the Positive Pathways Program of Kansas Big Brothers Big Sisters, can be found at the following locations:

  • 135th & Maple (Auburn Pointe Shopping Center 13303 W. Maple)
  • 13th & Tyler (Northwest Center, 8404-8606 W. 13th St.N)
  • Central & Rock (Royal Shopping Center, 314 N. Rock Road)
  • Historic Union Station (701 E. Douglas)

"We were inspired by the huge popularity of the Little Free Libraries Program," said TFA Executive Director Marci Hawks. "Film is a wonderful and accessible storytelling medium and we hope that the people will utlize our Mini Movie Libraries to share their favorite movies with the community and discover new gems."

Tallgrass Turns 15: Join The Party!

We're spreading 15 years of Stubbornly Independent far and wide.

TFA celebrated the film festival's 15th birthday on Wednesday, May 24th with a birthday party at Public at The Brickyard, complete with a fancy birthday cake made by Tallgrass Programming Director Gretchen and a serenade from the Jenny Wood Band.

We also revealed our 15th anniversary logo, with thanks to many community supporters and movie fans, and the talents of Howerton + White and Gavin Peters Photography.

And now it's your turn. Are you a movie fan? A Wichita fan? Stubbornly Independent? Download our 15th anniversary logo, snap yourself and tag yourself (and US) on facebook, twitter and instagram with the #tallgrass15.

Here's actress Judy Greer, posing with 15 at the Bentonville Film Festival before the premiere of her directorial debut A HAPPENING OF MONUMENTAL PROPORTIONS; and here is long-time Tallgrass programmimg consultant Eric Moore, who photoshopped his own 15 in Sunny SoCal.

We're excited to see what how you 15! Check out all the images in our facebook albums.

Celebrate 15 Years of Tallgrass!

Everyone is invited to a happy hour celebration o Wednesday, May 24th from 5:30-7:30pm to celebrate our 15th anniversary. The event takes place at Public at the Brickyard and is free and open to the public. Come share your memories from the past 15 years, and help us make new ones!

  • 15th anniversay logo reveal & your chance to be a part of it!
  • Take advantage of your LAST CHANCE to get a discounted VIP TALLPass for just $185 (Regular price is $250)
  • Enjoy complimentary Tallgrass Brewing Company Key Lime Pie (until it runs out) and a Chips & Salsa bar
  • $3 beer specials
  • Music from the Jenny Wood Band

TFA Partners with Orpheum and TKAAM for I AM NOT YOUR NEGRO

"It's unmissable and unforgettable." – Rolling Stone

TFA is proud to be part of Wichita’s theatrical premier of the 2017 Oscar-nominated movie I AM NOT YOUR NEGRO on Thursday, February 26th at 6pm at the Orpheum. Tickets are $10.

The gripping documentary, narrated by Samuel L. Jackson, examines America’s long and harrowing history of race relations, from the civil rights movement to the complicated present, through the eyes of author James Baldwin.

Tallgrass is all about community collaboration in bringing the best movies to Wichita and we are thrilled to once again partner with the Orpheum and TKAAM, responding to the community's request to make this film available here,” said Shan Jabara, Director of Acquisitions and Community Engagement. “I AM NOT YOUR NEGRO is a pivotal film inspired by a giant in American literature and civil rights. During these trying times of civil rights backlash, it seems only right to share the film together on big screen.”

TFA Presents the DoXX Spotlight: Celebrating Women Documentary Filmmakers

This International Women's Day, TFA is proud to announce a new women-driven, documentary competition - the DoXX Spotlight - debuting at the 15th annual Tallgrass Film Festival in October. We look forward to this showcase bringing much warranted attention to women filmmakers from around the globe.

The Women's Media Center notes that over the last 10 years, only about 20% of behind-the-camera Oscar nominations (directing, writing, editing, etc) have gone to women.  When examining the highest-grossing films since 2007, only 4% of the top 1,000 were directed by women.

Every year, many of Tallgrass Film Festival's most timely and challenging films have been made by women, particularly in the realm of documentary filmmaking. These filmmakers have taken oft tough subject matter and strong voices and have made films that tell essential stories from thoughtful perspectives. 

Eligible films will be documentary features directed by a woman, (male/female co-directing teams are not eligible) and will not have any traditional distribution deal (theatrical or VOD) at the time of the festival. Films are not bound by budget or country of origin.

Finalists will be selected by the Tallgrass Film Festival Programming Committee and will then be reviewed by a 3-woman jury of industry professionals including Beth Barrett, Artisitic Director, Seattle International Film Festival; Maisie Crow, Director, JACKSON (2016 Tallgrass Film Festival); and Debra Zimmerman, Excutive Director, Women Make Movies.

The top film, as selected by the jury, will screen as part of an evening spotlight during the festival with a reception, Q&A and special honors, to be announced. All finalists will be screened in regular competition at the festival, as well.

Submit your films online at Film Freeway or Withoutabox. Early bird submission deadline is March 15th. If you have already submitted your film and meet the eligiblity requirements, you will be automatically entered into competition.

Blayne Weaver Cuts to The Chase: It's just way easier to film a kiss than a shoot out.

Filmmaker Blayne Weaver first attended the Tallgrass Film Festival in 2013 to accept the Stubbornly Independent Award for FAVOR. Since then, he’s returned to Wichita several times and will be back again in April…stay tuned for more on that.

In the meantime, pre-order the 2016 TFF official selection Cut To The Chase on iTunes now, and learn more about shooting a feature film outside of Hollywood, tips for a successful kickstarter campaign, how late night filmmaker sessions at Tallgrass can help your casting choices and on how Blayne was blessed with the middle name Nutron.

TFA: Cut to the Chase is your fourth feature, what do you feel like you learned from your previous feature film experiences that you applied to  this film?

BW: That's a tough question because you learn SO MUCH on every job and every day on set. The most important thing for me on Chase was surrounding myself with talent who I trust and who trust me. A micro-budget action thriller definitely has its risks and there was no time for ego or attitude. I've learned to build a team that supports one another.

TFA: You’ve filmed movies all over the country, what was it like filming in your hometown?

BW: Shooting in my hometown of Shreveport, Louisiana was a joy. It sounds corny but the community really pulled together. Almost all the crew, most of the cast and all of the financing came from Shreveport so everyone was pulling for its success. We were offered free locations, picture cars, props... We even had neighbors making lunch for the entire crew.  It was an amazing homecoming.

TFA: Was this your first time using kickstarter? What advice would you give to filmmakers who are thinking of using crowd funding?

BW: This was my first time using Kickstarter for my own film. I helped out when writer/director Paul Osborne raised money for his thriller FAVOR (a past winner of the Stubbornly Independent Award) but this was the first time on my own. Here are my tips:

  • Be realistic about what you can raise. If you have less than 200 friends on Facebook, don't go seeking $20,000. You have to look at what is attainable. 
  • You must be vigilante, posting multiple times daily. Don't fool yourself- it's a job.
  • Toss your ego out. It's hard to ask for money. It just is. And if you want Kickstarter to work for you, you must be shameless about posting and asking for help. Don't worry about it. If you hit your goal and make a film, no one will remember that you were annoying on Facebook. 

TFA: Your first three features were much lighter in genre. What was the impetus for doing an action/thriller film and which  genre do you  prefer?

BW: My first three features were all romantic comedies (feel free to check out 6 Month Rule, Weather Girl and Outside Sales.)  The primary reason for directing Rom-Coms was budget. It's just way easier to film a kiss than a shoot out. My experience on Favor taught me how much can be accomplished on a minimal budget. I love getting to work in multiple genres but, I have to say... I love a good fight scene.

TFA: Can you talk  about your longtime collaboration with Patrick Day and why that works?

BW: Patrick and I met in acting class in Los Angeles when I was just 19 years old. Every week we would watch each other work and I just thought he was great. Paul Osborne wrote our respective roles in Favor for each of us, not knowing we knew each other. It was a really cool reunion and I wrote the role of Travis specifically for him. He's one of the most talented and genuinely kind people I know. I will cast him as long as he lets me.  

TFA: What was the casting process like for Cut to the Chase? Specifically for Lance Henriksen?

BW: Most of the roles in the film were written for specific actors: I worked with Erin Cahill on 6 Month Rule and wanted to write something for us to play siblings, the role of Travis I wrote for Patrick Day, all of the significant roles that were local cast like Patrick Kirton as the D.A and Luke Sexton as the ex boyfriend were written specifically for them.

Lyndie Greenwood was a find. I watched her play Jenny on the Fox Television show Sleepy Hollow and thought she brought forth the toughness and intelligence I wanted to see in Nola Barnes.

"The Man" was the biggest casting challenge. Last time I was at Tallgrass, some other filmmakers and I stayed up late brain storming on who would be ideal. Lance Henriksen was the perfect idea. We went to his agent and he liked the script and BOOM he did it. Lance is a total professional and a hell of a guy.

TFA: What advice would you give to someone  who is an actor,  who is directing themselves, and vice versa?

BW: Directing and acting can be really challenging for some. I've always liked it. It's important to maintain your objectivity and listen to your team. I always have someone I trust watching, whether it's a producer, script supervisor or the director of photography. It's important to put your ego aside and always keep in mind the story you're trying to tell.

TFA: Is there anyone specific who influenced your early film career?

BW: My two biggest influences came from my time on one set: a western called The Good Old Boys. The movie was directed by and starred Tommy Lee Jones. I guess one of the reasons that the director/star combo has always seemed natural to me is that I saw Tommy Lee do it so well when I was a kid. On that same set I played the little brother of Matt Damon. At the time, Matt was working diligently on a screenplay called Good Will Hunting. I responded to his desire to create his own work and it made me want to write.

TFA: Your middle name is “Nutron”…how did that happen?

Ha. My great grandparents were hillbillies. They had twin boys and named them Nutron and Nutree. Both boys hated their names so they went their entire lives being called Cotton and Slick. I was named after Nutron, which I always thought was funny because he hated his name so much. I love it, though. Good conversation piece.

Cut to the Chase hits On Demand, Amazon, Google Play and more on March 7th.

Academy Award Shorts Return to Wichita February 18-25

For the 31st  year, the Wichita Public Library will present free screenings of every 2017 Academy Award-nominated short film, including selections in the Best Live Action Short, Best Documentary Short and Best Animated Short categories. Sing (Mindenki), nominated in the live action short was an official selection of the 14th annual Tallgrass Film Festival.

Tallgrass founder Timothy Gruver was very proud of Wichita’s longstanding tradition of screening these cinematic gems, and always made a point to head to the library every winter to catch up on the films he wouldn’t otherwise be able to see. Tim was especially fond of the foreign films, as it is much more common for those films to receive financial support from the government, leading to exquisitely produced productions.

 “Short films are unique in that a single story is distilled to it’s true essence,” says Jon Gann, founder of the DC Shorts Film Festival and shorts programmer for festivals across the country. “A director's ability to touch, inform, entertain and elicit an emotional response in only a few short minutes is truly an incredible feat — especially since many short films are created by new talents with little or no previous experience.”

Sing (Mindenki), by London-based Hungarian director Kristof Deák, tells the story of young Zsofi, who is having a hard time fitting in at her new school. Her distress grows when the choir director treats her cruelly despite her love of singing. Along with her friend Liza, Zsofi investigates the revered teacher in an attempt to reveal her true nature.

“The music alone will draw you in but it is the immediately identifiable characters and circumstances that endear you to this story of friendship, inclusion and triumph of over repression, says TFA Co-Director of Programming Gretchen Mitchell. “It is an important reminder that your voice makes a difference.”

The free screenigs take place at the Wichita Public Library, the Orpheum and the Warren Theatre. Click here for the full schedule.

Interview with a (VR) Vampiress

We are thrilled to report on a recent collaboration between a few alumni filmmakers who met at the Tallgrass Film Festival and who are now working together on a film project. But not just any film project…take it away Ingrid Serban and Justin Johnson.

TFA: Ingrid, Justin, tell us about the project.

IS: The VR film that Justin, Forest (Sun) and I have been working on this January is the feature documentary, Strigoi, the Real Vampires of Transylvania. With nothing but a camera and the belief that she will go unharmed, a filmmaker returns to her roots in search of real vampires. (Yes, that’s Ingrid.)

TFA: How did you come together on this project?

IS: Justin and I were both on the filmmaker Advisory Board for Tallgrass Film Festival in 2016. I was immediately drawn to his zest for life, creativity and humble attitude. His enthusiasm doesn't stop at film but he genuinely cares for the people in front of his camera.  I had been thinking about doing a VR vampire piece in Transylvania. I've been fascinated with the VR medium and thought that a VR short film with the same theme as our feature would be a great product. When I heard Justin's Tallgrass Filmmaker Lab on VR filmmaking, it became clear to me that he was the best person for the job. 

JJ: It started with my overall obsession with all things VR - showing demos to people at the Tallgrass hotel room, and then doing a workshop on filming 360 video and Ingrid and Forest attended. At some point on one of the last nights of the festival, Ingrid asked if I'd be interested in coming to Romania and filming some 360 stuff, and I said 'of course'! 

TFA: What was it like working together?

IS: It was an absolute joy. I can't think of many people who would have gone through what we had to endure to get the footage for the film and not crack at the seams. Justin was a real trooper. He infused life and excitement into our project with focus and professionalism. Both Forest and I are delighted that we get to work on this project together. 

JJ: It's been great so far! I've loved seeing a new culture, and Ingrid is such a delight to work with. She's got a fantastic locomotion and a steady hand when it comes to directing and producing - methodical and smart. She sets her mind on something and gets it done. Plus, she's super fun to hang out with!

TFA: What were the best and trickiest moments you experienced?

JJ:  Well, we survived an overnight stay in a cabin up in a nearly deserted village in Romania, with no running water (pipes had frozen) and an outhouse…an adventure for sure.

IS: The environment we filmed in was trying to say the least. Without giving away too much, suffice it to say that for a weekend, we lived somewhere at the crossroads of freezing, gagging and sleep deprivation. What made it bearable was our own determination, the sweetness of one of our hosts and the incredible landscape and chilling stories we recorded.

TFA: So we have to ask, did you find any vampires?

Yes. Two. Was I able to film them in the act? Not so much. I have witnesses on tape. Scary stuff.

TFA: What else do you want people to know about the film? And when can we see it?

IS: I am excited to be able to share this land, people and stories with the world in VR form; a truly unique and intimate way to share this experience. The VR short film will accompany the feature documentary where possible or travel on its own. We intend to have it available for the fall of 2017 and 2018 film festival circuit. 

TFA: Anything else you’d like to share?

IS: I am eternally grateful to Tallgrass Film Association for putting on my favorite film festival. Having been there two years in a row, it now feels like home. The life and productivity of filmmakers rests heavily and joyfully in collaboration. It is places like Tallgrass Film Festival that lead the way into a brighter future because we all get to shine together. 

TFA: Aw, shucks. We love you guys too and we can't wait to see the movie(s.) As for whether they found any vampires, guess we'll just have to wait and see...

2016 Tallgrass Official Selections: In The News & Now Streaming

TFA sends hearty congratulations to three films from the 2016 festival that were nominated for Academy Awards, including A Man Called Ove and The Salesman for Best Foreign Language Film; and Sing, for Best Live Action Short. Additionally, Free In Deed was nominated for the 2017 John Cassavetes Award at the Independent Spirit Awards. Wichita will be rooting for you!

In addition, we’re especially excited to share these 2016 Tallgrass Film Festival titles that are now available on Netflix, streaming or on-demand. These films deserve to be seen by the masses and we’re proud of all the blood, sweat and tears that these Stubbornly Independent filmmakers put into their projects. If you saw them at Tallgrass, share them with a friend or watch them again!

A Man Called Ove, 2017 Academy Award Nominee, (Music Box Films): Rent or purchase on VOD platforms

Author: The JT LeRoy Story (Magnolia Pictures: Rent or purchase on VOD platforms

Closet Monster (Strand Releasing): Rent or purchase on VOD platforms

Growing Up Coy: Now on Netflix

Harry Benson: Shoot First (Magnolia Pictures) - Rent or purchase on VOD platforms

Mad Tiger (Film Movement): Now on Netflix

To Be a Miss, U.S. Premiere/14th annual Tallgrass Film Festival (Cargo releasing): Now on Netflix

Underfire: The Untold Story of PFC Tony Vaccaro (Cargo Releasing): Now on HBO Go

Tallgrass TV: Alicia Slimmer

Tallgrass TV Host Naythan Smith sat down with Creedmoria filmmaker Alicia Slimmer at the 14th annual Tallgrass Film Festival. The film was both a 2016 Stubbornly Independent nominee and winner of the Golden Strands Programming Award for Best First Feature. Writer/Director/Producer Slimmer borrowed many elements from her own life growing up in Queens, NY, in the 1980s.

Indie Filmmaking Pro Tips:

  • More money was spent on Munchkins than on any other prop because the crew kept eating the "picture food." (Who can blame them, really?)
  • Alicia personally made all 72 deviled eggs you see in the film.
  • She dodged getting a ticket for doing donuts in a parking lot by putting the cops in her film. (Ingenious!)

Tallgrass TV: Beth Dewey

Tallgrass TV host Aaron Wirtz chats with Director/Co-Writer Beth Dewey about Erasing Eden, a 2016 Stubbornly Independent nominee.

Dewey's filmmaking experiece includes working for the legendary Roger Corman, and as a picture editor for the Oscars, she has been nominated for 3 Primetime Emmys.

To Beth, Stubbornly Indepndent means "not only means taking risks but means blasting through one's own comfort zone to approach storytelling in original and unconventional ways. It means telling uncomfortable stories to shine a light on social issues in an effort to better humanity. It means persisting to make a film when all roads lead to "no" and pushing through to honor the voice inside."

Tallgrass TV: Brad Johnson, Ian Nelms & Eshom Nelms

Meet Producer Brad Johnson and Ian Nelms and Eshom Nelms, three of the filmmakers who participated on the 2016 Filmmaker Advisory Board. The Nelms brothers have screened two feature films at Tallgrass including Lost On Purpose and Waffle Street, both of which starred James Lafferty and the latter of which was produced by Johnson.

Together, they will premiere their new film Small Town Crime, starring John Hawkes and Octavia Spencer, at the 2017 SXSW Film Festival.


This organization received funding for general operational support from the City of Wichita