Local filmmakers tackle Magic: The Gathering in Planeswalkers documentary

Planeswalkers aims to illuminate the Magic: The Gathering subculture.
With more than ten million players worldwide, a twenty-year history and a tournament circuit that awards hundreds of thousands of dollars annually to the top players, it's fair to say that Magic: The Gathering is a juggernaut in the gaming industry. Despite that, it's never garnered the same kind of attention lavished on other gaming phenomenons like World of Warcraft, perhaps due to the complex nature of the game and the insularity of its community. Local production company Broken Science Productions aims to change that with Planeswalkers, a feature-length documentary that digs deep into the game and the people who play it. Before the film premieres in May, we sat down to talk about the film with producers Ray and Vince Cruz and director Karen Cruz.

See also: I'm a sports nut for Magic: The Gathering

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One Day in Denver invites filmmakers to document the city for a collective film

On April 26, filmmakers across the city are invited to take part in One Day in Denver. Novice camera-phone auteurs and skilled movie-makers alike will be capturing their unique perspectives on Denver and then submitting the footage to the multi-faceted documentary project. The project is a spin-off of One Day on Earth, a 2010 project involving films from thousands of participants around the world; Denver is one of eleven U.S. cities putting together its own metro version of One Day.

See also: Filmmakers race through Denver this weekend in 48 Hour Film Project

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Women + Film Voices Film Festival showcases four films with a Colorado connection

Work from photographer Suzanne Heintz's documentary short Playing House.
The fourth annual Women + Film Voices Film Festival opens tonight at the Sie FilmCenter with a diverse array of documentaries, comedies, features and short films all centered on women. This fest has grown in both scope and attendance over its run at the Sie, becoming known as a showcase of stories about women and told by women from all over the world. And for the first time ever, four of the films in this year's lineup involve subjects and filmmakers with Colorado ties. In advance of the festival opening, founder and event producer Tammy Brislin sat down with Westword to give the inside story on these Colorado-proud works.

See also: Suzanne Heintz and her plastic love in Life Once Removed

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Scary! Second annual Stanley Film Festival coming to Estes Park in April

The most notorious haunted hotel in the world, the Stanley Hotel, inspiration for The Shining, will host the second annual Stanley Film Festival, April 24-27. Organized by the Denver Film Society, the festival fits right into the historic hotel, with a theme -- presented by NBC Universal's Chiller TV -- that celebrates the best in independent horror cinema.

See also: Murder by Death at the Stanley Hotel

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Sam Spina on developing an animated short for Nickelodeon and how you can do the same

For a cartoonist, having a show on Nickelodeon seems as far-fetched as becoming an astronaut, says Sam Spina. But for the former Denverite who's currently based in Atlanta, that dream just became a reality through the Nickelodeon Shorts Program. The Xeric award-winning Spina (whose diary comic Spinadoodles was recognized in the Best of Denver 2012 as Best Comic Strip) pitched a concept about three friends who dig a hole in their backyard to Nickelodeon, and it was accepted to be developed into an animated short. We caught up with Spina to talk about the nine-month process of working with Nickelodeon, his upcoming projects and how you, too, can submit to be a part of Nick's shorts program. .

See also: Cartoonist Sam Spina on winning a Xeric grant and his daily comic strip, Spinadoodles

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The Denver Actor Project showcases local talent through short films

Categories: Colorado Film

Photos courtesy of Brad Stabio
The Denver Actor Project is an ongoing showcase of local talent.
Local filmmaker Brad Stabio created the Denver Actor Project, an ongoing showcase of local actors, to demonstrate the talent that can be found in the Mile High City. The project premiered at the Starz Denver Film Festival last November with a series of six short films, and Stabio hopes to create more for this year's festival.

See also: Denver's Cinema Geeks competing in the International AR.Drone Film Festival

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Sex Shop Cinema: Puppet porn, butter-for-lube and more (NSFW)

Whether you are a raincoat-wearing heavy-breather, an academic seeking fodder for educational frottage or a run-of-the-mill cineaste, beware: You had better be of age and hope the city authorities do not bust up this festival. The Denver Film Society has curated a lineup of erotic films sure to fan your flames of desire and debate -- so grab your favorite lube and check out our handy guide to the eleven films in the DFS Sex Shop Cinema.

See also: The best BDSM movies: Five more options for your viewing pleasure (Iimages are NSFW)

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Festivus Film and Laugh Track festivals call it quits

Tim Sorensen
Two bastions of Denver's DIY scene won't be back in 2014. The Festivus Film Festival, which was founded in 2007, and the Laugh Track Comedy Festival, which spun off the FFF, both ceased operation at the end of last year. Beyond providing many local comedians and filmmakers with a valuable opportunity to network and hone their craft for a hip audience, the festivals also helped grow that audience, paving the way for other ambitious events, such as last August's High Plains Comedy Festival. We reached out to the founders and organizers of both festivals for their thoughts on the end of their brainchild; read on for their quotes and clips of highlights throughout the years.

See also: Eleven memorable lines from the Laugh Track Comedy Festival

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Celebrate legalization with the Tokeasy DVD release party

Wally Wallace
Chaz Grundy as Tyrell in Tokeasy.
While the impact that legalizing cannabis will have on Colorado life has been analyzed from economic, political and demographic standpoints, its influence on our creative community has received much less attention. With films like Tokeasy, however, that may be starting to change. Heretofore discreet stoners have been coming out of the woodwork and ganjapreneurs are emerging as the area's most significant patrons of the arts. While as little as ten years ago, an event like this Saturday's Tokeasy DVD release party would seem like a literal pipe dream, now it just seems like the most appropriate way to honor a film with a unique perspective on a transformative time in our history.
See also: Keith Garcia and Theresa Mercado join forces for new film series Channel Z

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Climb to Glory: The Legacy of the 10th Mountain Ski Troopers to screen at Vilar Center

Colorado Ski & Snowboard History Museum
10th Mountain Division soldiers trained in Colorado before fighting in Italy during World War II.
On Thursday, January 9, the Colorado Ski & Snowboard Museum will present a special screening of Chris Anthony's documentary Climb to Glory: The Legacy of the 10th Mountain Ski Troopers at Vilar Performing Arts Center at Beaver Creek. Anthony's film featuring interviews with 10th Mountain Division veterans and re-creating some of their most famous adventures was produced in partnership with the museum and Warren Miller Entertainment, and won the Audience Choice Award when it premiered at the Vail Film Festival in March 2013.

See also: Get the Edge on winter fun in Colorado!

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