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FEMALE UTAH FILMMAKERS MAKING AN IMPACT


This past month, I was incredibly proud to see so many Utah women filmmakers making an impact.

I visited St. George for DocUtah where four female Utah filmmakers screened their films (Jenny Mackenzie's Quiet Heroes, Jennifer Jordan's 3000 Cups of Tea, Erica Cohn's The Judge, and Kelsey Moore's What a Rancher Looks Like).

And today, the first of two Utah-made feature films will be released in the next two weeks with strong women in front of and behind the camera, showcasing complex female characters in prominent roles. Clare Niederpruem and Kristi Shimek are behind a modern adaptation of Little Women, in theaters today, and Melissa Leillani Larson and Chantelle Squires are behind Jane and Emma, opening on October 12th.

We're thrilled to see these women premiere films here and across the country. We were able to support many of these talented filmmakers by reviewing initial scripts, scouring the state for locations and coming to fruition on the big screen.
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FEMME - UVU'S DIGITAL CINEMA PRODUCTION PROGRAM

Utah Valley University has been working with the Utah Film Commission by supporting female students studying film production within the Digital Cinema Production program. The group is called FEMME and consists of 40 female students working with seasoned women in the industry. Recently, FEMME worked with Director Jennifer Reeder and DP Holly Tuckett on a short film shot on location in Provo Canyon.
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NEW GENERATION, SAME SISTERS: LITTLE WOMEN IN 2018

As Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women celebrates its 150th anniversary, we are presented with a new opportunity to revisit the much-loved story. Talented filmmakers, Clare Niederpruem (writer, director) and Kristi Shimek (writer), who both have experience filming in Utah, have created a modern adaptation, reimagining the 1879 novel with a fresh twist. “New generation, same sisters”, as the filmmakers put it.

Having received a Utah state film incentive in 2017, the majority of Little Women was filmed in Salt Lake County, with the iconic March house set in Holladay. The production champions female filmmaking, with hard-working and passionate women writers, producers, director, cinematographer, production designer and more joining forces to tell this story.

Ahead of the feature’s release (September 28), we invite you to take a sneak peek behind the scenes to hear what the cast and crew have to say about filming in Utah. A Q&A with the filmmakers is now live on the blog, with everything from the inspiration behind the production to choosing Utah as a film location and more. Be sure to go and see Little Women in theaters starting Friday, September 28.
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LOCATION OF THE MONTH: THIS IS THE PLACE STATE PARK

This is The Place Heritage Park is an outdoor living history attraction that presents the story of everyday life in a typical Utah settlement from 1847-1897. The landscape is comprised of more than 40 recreated and original buildings from settlements throughout Utah. This film-friendly location has housed multiple productions throughout the years such as In Emma's Footsteps and the soon to be released (October 12th), Jane and Emma. The Heritage Park is available to visit year round and is located 15 minutes from downtown Salt Lake City.
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"Spring 2017 saw Utah’s This Is The Place Heritage Park transform into 1844 Nauvoo, Illinois. Feature film, Jane and Emma, took advantage of the Heritage Park, which encourages visitors to “step back in time and see the west as it was”.

Jane and Emma captures the unlikely friendship between black convert, Jane Manning James, and Emma Smith, wife of LDS church founder, Joseph Smith. There is a strong female presence both behind and in front of the camera, with Melissa Leillani Larson writing, Chantelle Squires directing, and strong female characters cast in prominent roles, starting new conversations. Chantelle Squires, director, producer, and editor of Jane and Emma described her Utah experience by saying, “I will always try and make my films in Utah if I can. The resources we had here were vital in making it come together. The majority of our crew was Utah based and, outside of our lead actors, the cast was also from Utah. Everyone working on this film was invested...incredibly talented and experienced. I couldn’t have asked for a better crew...It’s a really wonderful place to make films.” Jane and Emma will be in theaters October 12th.
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IN THE NEWS

This modern-day 'Little Women' adaptation was filmed in Utah, The Salt Lake Tribune
Creators and fans connect and learn together at CVX live, Daily Herald
The 5 Best Movies to Buy or Stream This Week: 'Damsel', Flavorwire
'Westworld' Star Thandie Newton Has Human Reaction To Emmy Victory, Deadline
'Andi Mack' season 3 premiere date and exclusive clip revealed, Entertainment
Utah Film Center's 'Artist Foundry' provides workshops for filmmakers and screenwriters, Good4Utah
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NOW SHOWING

Little Women: In theaters September 28th
Andi Mack Season 3: Premieres on October 8th
Jane and Emma: In theaters October 12th
Damsel: Available on DVD and Digital

UPCOMING EVENTS

#801CREATIVEWOMEN: Gender In Culture Panel and Training: October 11th
Artist Foundry Screenwriting Workshop Part One: October 2nd, 9th. 16th
MPAU Quarterly Event at Lake Effect: October 25th

Check out the UFC Event Calendar
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