Pecker’s Point: August (Celebrating One Year!)

LETTER FROM THE CEO

Our hearts go out to the victims and their families in Dayton and El Paso and for the incomprehensible loss of life and innocence. We also mourn the passing of the Nobel Laureate Toni Morrison, whose words and actions give voice to the voiceless while inspiring others to do the same. One favorite line underscores the message we strive to impart: “If there is a (film) that you want to (see), but it hasn’t been written yet, you must be the one to write it.”

This past week, we communicated that message to 400 youth with their own unique stories to tell at our fourth annual HBO Summer Kids Camp for LGBTQ-led families co-sponsored by Sesame Street and Family Equality. Back in 2015 when we first launched the program, we did not expect that we would be struggling to meet the demand for this popular program. In fact, with the marriage equality act having just passed weeks earlier, we wondered if the need to carve out this one special place where LGBTQ-led families could revel in community and support would not be taken up by countless communities across the country. However, in a world that is fraught with divisiveness and confusion, overwhelming appreciation for the welcoming and safe haven that Provincetown and Family Week affords has only deepened.

For our part, we were able to screen quality kids programs from HBO and Sesame Street, provide educational activities led by the Cape Code Children’s Place; and entertain with our favorite celebrities including The Voice singer Esera Tuaolo, former MN Vikings player and a gay father of two, and Sesame Street’s very own Abby Cadabby, stopping in from her world tour celebrating the 50th Anniversary of Sesame Street. Thanks to the hardworking team at Family Equality, HBO, Cape Cod Children’s Place, and Sesame Street, we served many wonderful families on the Cape and beyond.

August is whale month in Provincetown, a popular migration spot in the spring and summer for one of the most magnificent mammals on the planet. Yet, we know that they are also the most endangered. Throughout the month of August, we will present daily screenings of Nadine Licostie’s powerful short documentary Spinnaker, about a humpback whale who succumbed to the torture of four entanglements over the course of a decade. The film also focuses on the individuals who have committed their lives to saving Whales like Spinnaker that struggle to exist in our oceans. Spinnaker’s skeleton is on permanent display at the Center for Coastal Studies, whose fine work is also highlighted in the film. For more information, go to www.coastalstudies.org. Daily screenings are at 4 & 7 pm at the Waters Edge Cinema and are free and open to the public. To reserve a spot, visit www.provincetownfilm.org.

Between the inspiration for Spinnaker, remembering the words of Toni Morrison, interacting with the future storytellers of tomorrow, and experiencing the collective grief of communities under attack, I am once again reminded of the role that film can serve in our lives and the importance of continuing the work at PFS. As entertainment, the experience of watching a film allows us to escape if not cope with the inexplicable. Taken to greater heights, stories on film can help us make sense of and even help us heal from our pain. Beyond showcasing these fine works, our mission is to ensure that diverse voices are equally represented.

In the word of Ms. Morrison, ‘…remember that your real job is that if you are free, you need to free somebody else. If you have some power, then your job is to empower somebody else.”

Respectfully,


Christine Kunewa Walker, CEO


MEMBER IN THE NEWS: Maria Lopez

It’s not often that Pecker’s Point “Member in the News” profiles a television personality, a former superior court judge in the Superior Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and a local of Provincetown all in one feature.

Cuban-American with a BA in Government from Smith College and a JD from Boston University, Judge Maria Lopez made legal history as the first Latina appointed to the bench in Massachusetts when she was selected as a District Court Judge by Governor Michael Dukakis. She continued to mark history when she was appointed to the Massachusetts Superior Court in 1993 and an assistant attorney general in civil rights division of the office of the Massachusetts Attorney General.

Last year, Maria Lopez, Honorary Host on the Committee for the Provincetown Film Society’s 20th Anniversary Gala, accepted the Founders Award posthumously on behalf of Stephen Mindich—Maria’s husband, owner of the Boston Phoenix, and inaugural Media Sponsor for the Film Festival in 1998. A woman of initiative and firsts, this past June, Maria further provided her support to kick-off the inaugural year of the PFS Democracy Series featuring a conversation with Former FBI Acting Director, Andrew McCabe.

Diplomatically active, Maria has made more than three dozen visits to Cuba in an effort to lift and illuminate its art community, its people, and its culture to the rest of the world. We are so grateful to Maria for her continued support and contributions to the diverse voice.


Women’s Week 2019

2019 marks the 35th anniversary of Women’s Week in Provincetown! Join PFS for our annual Women’s Week Film Festival at Waters Edge Cinema, featuring special screenings of CLAMBAKE with award-winning director Andrea Meyerson.

Visit our website for more Women’s Week updates and screenings. Follow @ptownfilm on Facebook and Instagram for exclusive content.

October 14–20, 2019

Watch the CLAMBAKE Trailer, directed by Andrea Meyerson

FOR MORE INFO ON WOMEN’S WEEK


Watch the PIFF 2019 Trailer now on Youtube!

Check out this year’s Festival Trailer, now on Youtube for your viewing pleasure!

The 2019 trailer was animated by Provincetown Film Institute Women’s Resident, Emily Hubley. Hubley has been making animated shorts for almost forty years. Her films are in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art, Department of Film and she is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Her feature, The Toe Tactic, was developed at the Sundance Institute’s Screenwriters’ and Filmmakers’ Labs. She was in the first class of Annenberg Film Fellows named by the Sundance Institute.


THE LAUNCH with JULIE ROCKETT

Deanna Cheng

Happy Anniversary to us! We started the Launch last year and in that short time we’ve seen Launch interviewees come to Provincetown as headline performers (AB Cassidy, Danny Franzese), become the breakout star of Pose (Angelica Ross), finish their next projects (Paul Harding, Drew Droege) and begin new ones (Matt Brown, Norah Shapiro).

My dear brother Sean says that I’m always one step ahead of finding the next big personality and trend. Luckily Sean forgot about the time I moaned that I wanted that caterwauling performer to get off stage so I could see the far superior headlining act, Crash Test Dummies. That caterwauler was Sheryl Crow. So, yeah, music isn’t my forte but, I think comedy and film are.

With Sean’s compliments in mind (and with tremendous apologies to Ms. Crow), I’d like to rewind to a year ago. The Launch’s first subject was Kiley Fitzgerald because she was on the precipice of being recognized for her great talent. True to form, she’s now performing with Second City and The Annoyance Theater in Chicago (I called it!).

I’m returning to this theme for this month’s Launch. I’ve got the feeling that if you haven’t yet heard of the talented actor and writer, Deanna Cheng, then you’re about to. She was one of the stars and writers of the re-boot of Heathers. She can also be seen on the shows, Black Monday and GLOW. Deanna and I got to spend the afternoon dissecting the ending of season 2 of Big Little Liars, and discussing her next projects, and, of course, her favorite films.

Julie Rockett: What was your first favorite film?

Deanna Cheng: What comes to mind first is our neighbors had Grease 2 on VHS. My sisters and I would go over their house and I don’t think there’s a number you could put on how many times we saw that movie.

JR: I like that it’s specifically Grease 2 and not Grease that you loved.

DC: Yeah, they actually had Grease 1 but we weren’t interested… I think that the Michelle Pfeiffer character was so cool and bad ass with her bangs and the way she chewed gum. She was pushing away the nerdy guy, who was actually not nerdy but gorgeous, around. She was just way cooler than Olivia Newton-John.

JR: Like she was your feminist icon?

DC: Kind of! Yeah! She worked at an auto shop and set boundaries with the T-Birds. She was amazing.

JR: Have you binged any shows lately?

DC: I binged When They See Us all in one sitting. Have you seen it?

JR: I haven’t. I know this sounds awful but I have two young sons and I get really triggered by injustice and racial inequality and I get really down. So I know that I’m not in a place where I can watch it and not be devastated at the present time. But maybe later.

DC: I understand. I feel the same way about The Handmaid’s Tale. But I have to say what Ava DuVarnay did was spectacular. You can see that she made it her job to see that so many angles of this story were told. She dug in. To be able to create something so completely and with so much heart and passion… that’s the goal. And she did it. She crushed it!

JR: Is there a dream subject that you want to work?

DC: It’s funny. My reason for wanting to become an actor and my favorite films were Woody Allen films. I loved the pacing, the dialogue, the acting…

JR: Was there a favorite Woody Allen film?

DC: Sweet and Lowdown was it for a long time… it’s hard because I can’t support his films…I don’t have my parents anymore and I have these wonderful memories of them laughing so hard at his films and that’s something special to me that now takes on a different meaning.

JR: Is there someone else you would love to work with?

DC: Lemme take from Woody Allen and move her somewhere else, I just saw Dianne Wiest in a play and she was phenomenal. I would love to work with her on something.

JR: Is there a hidden gem that you feel you discovered?

DC: I remember I used to watch this movie that my Grandpa loved, The In-Laws with Alan Arkin and Peter Falk. That movie is a comedy all-timer for me. There’s one scene where they’ve just been dropped off in a foreign country and Peter Falk is this CIA agent. They’re being shot at and he yells at Alan Arkin, “Serpentine!” so they don’t get hit. That scene gets me laughing so hard and if I think I’m ever in an active shooter situation, I know to run serpentine, just in case.

JR: What are you working on now?

DC: I’m writing a comedy with my longtime friend, Brandon Keener, about an old man who accidentally becomes an Instagram influencer. We’re finalizing the pilot now and hope to shoot it soon.

JR: Does it have a title?

DC: The working title right now is ‘For The Gram’.

JR: I love that!

DC: And the show I created with Matt McConkey and Paul Scheer is living on comedycentral.com. It’s called UNSEND. Hosted by comedians Patti Harrison and Joel Kim Booster.

JR: I can’t wait to do a deep dive on that. Thank you so much for your time Deanna!


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A non-profit arthouse cinema, operating year-round, and contributing to Provincetown’s tradition as America’s oldest and most vital art colony. Located on the mezzanine between the 2nd and 3rd floor of Whalers Wharf.