ST. LOUIS, Mo. - The 19th Annual Whitaker St. Louis Filmmakers Showcase, a presentation of the nonprofit Cinema St. Louis, serves as the area’s primary venue for films made by local artists. The Showcase screens works that were written, directed, edited, or produced by St. Louis residents or films with strong local ties.

  

The 19 film programs that screen at Washington University’s Brown Hall from July 12-14 & 19-21 serve as the Showcase’s centerpiece. The programs range from full-length fiction features and documentaries to multi-film compilations of fiction and documentary shorts. Many programs include post-screening Q&As with filmmakers. There are 106 films in this year’s event.

 

The Showcase also hosts a free closing-night awards party on Sunday, July 21, at Blueberry Hill’s Duck Room. Cinema St. Louis will announce the Showcase films chosen for inclusion in the St. Louis International Film Festival, and juried awards for the best Showcase films will be given.  Complimentary Urban Chestnut beer and a cash bar are available for attendees who are 21 or older.

 

Tickets for film programs from July 12-21 at Brown Hall are $13 each; $10 for students with valid and current photo ID and for Cinema St. Louis members with valid membership cards. No phone sales, but tickets can be purchased online at brownpapertickets.com. Direct ticketing links will be on the Cinema St. Louis website, or search for “St. Louis Filmmakers Showcase” on Brown Paper Tickets. There is a small service charge per ticket for online sales, which are limited to full-price tickets only. The closing-night awards party is free and does not require tickets.

 

Highlights of this year’s Showcase include the following:

 

  • The Ghost Who Walks: Shot in St. Louis by former Showcase award-winner Cody Stokes, “The Ghost Who Walks” is a breathlessly paced ride through the hidden underbelly of the city. After five years in prison, Nolan (Garland Scott) is given his freedom, but his release required that he rat on his former boss — a betrayal that carries a death sentence.
  • A New Leaf: Reimagining Henry Shaw’s Museum: After more than a century of decline, Henry Shaw’s museum is once again open to the public at the Missouri Botanical Garden (MoBOT) following a multi-million-dollar restoration. The film chronicles the painstaking effort to bring Shaw’s museum back to its original glory Directed by Paul Schankman.
  • Road to the Pros: “Road to the Pros” offers an inside look at the St. Louis amateur boxing scene. Providing a lively and informative overview, the film interviews past and current trainers and a host of up-and-coming boxers of all races and ages. Directed by Earl McWilliams Jr.
  • Through the Cracks: In July 2002, Johnny Johnson was arrested and charged with the abduction and murder of 6-year-old Cassandra Williamson in Valley Park, Mo., and the effects of the crime continue to reverberate in the community. Directed by Ben Scholle
  • Path of the Past: The subject’s grandson tells the incredible true story of Pocahontas, Ill.’s Louis “Louch” Baczewski, a tank-crew member who miraculously survived the perilous journey through all five major campaigns of World War II’s European Theater.
  • Documentary Shorts: Three programs of outstanding documentary shorts offer inspiring and intimate portraits of our city and its inhabitants.
  • Experimental Shorts: Seventeen riveting experimental shorts are featured in this annual favorite Showcase program
  • Narrative Shorts: A wide array of filmmakers of all ages present new fiction works.

 

The Whitaker Foundation again serves as the Showcase’s title sponsor. The foundation’s twofold mission is to encourage the preservation and use of parks and to enrich lives through the arts.

 

The event’s other sponsors include the Arts & Education Council, Grizzell & Co., Missouri Arts Council, Missouri Film Office, Regional Arts Commission, St. Louis Convention and Visitors Commission, St. Louis Public Radio, and Urban Chestnut Brewing Co.

 

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