Inaugural Uptown Film Festival A Success
By: Mark Winter
Two-day festival draws more than 3,300 attendees and three major Michigan premieres
BIRMINGHAM, Mich., March 22, 2011 – Leaders in Michigan’s growing film industry joined together to launch the Uptown Film Festival (UFF), an annual celebration of Michigan-made movies and the productions created by Michigan filmmakers on March 11-12, 2011 in Birmingham, Mich. UFF Co-Executive Director Jeffrey Spilman made the announcement.
The festival attracted more than 3,300 attendees during its two-day run, and premiered three Michigan-made films, including Kill the Irishman, starring Christopher Walken, Val Kilmer and Ray Stevenson, Demoted, starring David Astin, David Cross and Michael Vartan and Things Fall Apart, starring Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson and Ray Liotta, in addition to nearly 100 films that appeared as part of the Detroit Independent Film Festival (DIFF). Warren Zide, producer of Demoted, and Randall Emmett, co-producer of Things Fall Apart, were also in attendance to introduce their films and discuss the future of the Michigan film industry. Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson also received an award from the festival on Friday for his support of the film industry in Oakland County.
The event, which began with a VIP charity gala on Friday, March 11th benefitting The Arthritis Foundation, Detroit Institute of Arts and Gleaners Food Bank of Southeastern Michigan, also played host to the “Making Movies in Michigan” film panel, as well as the 2nd Annual Michigan Film Awards, which was presented in association with DIFF. VIP ticket holders were also invited to attend the festival’s Afterglow party on Saturday, March 12th, to celebrate the festivals culmination.
“On behalf of everyone who had a part in this festival, we are extremely proud of its resounding success,” said Spilman. “The hard work of each filmmaker and the support shown to them by the community has only reaffirmed our commitment to this industry in our great state.”
Click here to view and download photos from the Uptown Film Festival
About the Uptown Film Festival
Established in Birmingham, Michigan in 2011, the Uptown Film Festival (UFF) is a celebration of the Michigan film industry and, in particular, productions created entirely, or in part, within the state. It was established by leaders in the Michigan film industry and will be held annually to recognize the industry and individuals’ accomplishments within the state. Since the Michigan Film Incentives were adopted in 2008, over 7,000 production jobs have been created in addition to the 4,000 acting jobs for extras and day players. The film industry is one of the fastest growing sectors of Michigan’s economy. For more information on the UFF, please visit www.uptownfilmfestival.com.
Meghan O’Brien Edwards